Sunday, October 4, 2015

Guns don't kill people, they just make it quicker and more effective

I will admit, this is a subject I'm not super knowledgeable about, but I'm very opinionated about.

I am 100% for gun control.

One of my favorite movies growing up, don't laugh, was The American President. Call me sentimental, but something about old people romance is just incredibly cute and sweet to me, even as a 12-16 year old girl. But there was always a speech that stood out to me, and when he says "I'm going to get the guns" it was so powerful. And I kept thinking, why don't we do that now? Granted, media coverage of mass shootings wasn't as avid as it is now, and violence was a little less glorified when I was a kid, than it is now. And video games are a lot more visually graphic now than when I was a kid.

But yes, I always loved the president's speech about gun control, we have real problems and we need real people to solve them. Its wonderful.

So why can't we as a nation realize we have problems and solve them? It seems like the answers are so simple, so why can't the solutions be that simple as well? I realize having a cohesive society is complicated, and new policy takes time. But this seems to be a matter of great importance, and maybe we should declare a state of national emergency. How many children need to be senselessly murdered before we make a change?

I have a friend. Wonderful person. Very kind, very sweet, very selfless. She was in a bad marriage, and eventually got a divorce. The man was literally insane, she had a restraining order against him, and she pleaded with the courts to take away his ability to own firearms. Eventually, my friend remarried. A man she loved, and felt safe with, and had a very happy marriage with. She went out one night with her granddaughter, her new husband stayed at home. Her ex-husband entered her home looking to kill her, and when he discovered she wasn't there, shot and killed her new husband.

They had been married for about two years.

There was an autistic boy, nonverbal and living in a group home. One night, he snuck out to presumably go home. He got lost, and tried entering the wrong home on his street. The neighbor, without calling the police or trying to find out who the boy was, shot and killed him.

He knew the boy as a child.

There was a little boy who was playing with his little brother. The two found their parents guns and decided to play cops and robbers. The older brother shot and killed his little brother.

How is he going to grow up knowing he murdered his brother?

There was a woman who got a gun purse for her birthday from her husband. A cute little purse she could keep her concealed weapon in. She was shopping for groceries with her two year old little boy. The little boy, somehow, was able to get into the compartment of the purse that held the gun, and shot and killed his mother in the store.

How will that father explain the boy's mother's death to him?

There have been movie theaters, malls, schools, recruitment centers, post offices, and places of worship that have been turned into scenes of mass murder, because some one used a gun.

But it's the person that kills, not the gun right?

Imagine just for a moment if in any of those instances, the murderer was using a knife, instead of a gun.

Taking away gun rights won't solve the problem. People who want them will still get them.

I can't disagree with that. But would it be more difficult? Yes. I believe so.

The second amendment was created in a different time. It was for the purpose of the people being able to form a militia in the event that the government over step their bounds. In a time when the general population could easily overthrow the government. Let's be honest, that is not possible now. Anyone who thinks their hand guns, rifles or shotguns could protect them against drones, tanks, bombs are deluded.

Then comes the self defense argument. I need a gun in case someone assaults me, or enters my home. Let's imagine for a moment, could we, if our nation had stricter gun ownership laws. Making it more difficult for people without sound mind to obtain a gun. There may be less instance of violence at gun point. As a woman, I'd carry mace or pepper spray before I ever carried a gun because if you're not a good shot, it's not going to be effective. If mace can bring down a bear, it can bring down an intruder.

But guns can kill from a distance. Yes! They can! And they do!

We have allowed our gun problem to get out of hand. Everyone and their dog owns a gun. And everyone and their dog is trigger happy. Kill or be killed. You come on my property you will be shot. Why? Why have we cultivated and allowed this mentality to grow? Why have we allowed savage video games that glorify gun violence be played by impressionable children? You can regenerate in a game, you can't regenerate in life.

Why have we allowed the media to make such enormous deals out of mass shootings? Why have we inversely created gun violence hero worship?

It's a plague on our society. It's a scourge. It is a virus. It's deadly. And you've got a bunch of rich wing conservatives clinging to their rifles on their porches asserting it's them against the world and they'll be damned if the distrustful government ever take their guns away.

I'm not calling for a complete removal of firearms. That would be impossible. Not to mention my dad hunted for our meat growing up. Guns have a time and a place. But just having a handgun in your nightstand on the off chance an intruder might enter your home is ridiculous. It's unnecessary. We need better control. We need to license ownership. We need regulations on purchasing and registering. Not anyone SHOULD be able to own a gun. It should not be a right. It should be a privilege, that should come after education, certification and licensing. We need to stop the insanity.

I am much less worried about an intruder in my home who may want to steal my TV or rape me, than I am about an insane man entering my child's school and killing everyone in the class. I am less worries about someone holding me at gun point in a back alley than I am of shopping in a mall and being shot to death by a religious radical.

I don't know the exact or the best solution. But I know that it needs to be a topic of political discussion, and that our legislators need to work towards a solution, and do it quickly before another mother has to burry her child because some insane person decided to shoot them to death.

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