My insides are jumbled. My stomach has been churning with an acidic vengeance since the Colorado massacre. I’m days removed from it, and still I have this nebulous feeling of dread and depression, anger and angst.
I’ve fought online and in person with as many people as I care to anymore over gun laws. If I hear one more person say that if everyone had a gun that night, and we had some kind of showdown at the OK Corral, lives might have been saved, I’m going to wretch. Beyond the stupidly obvious points that it was a dark theater where a young man set off tear gas in a surprise attack and was covered from head to toe with Kevlar, the basic idea that piling more guns into the mix smacks of a sad and ridiculous solution to a disturbing problem.
I know, I know, everyone who owns a gun thinks they are a combination of John Wayne and a SWAT team member. As I write, there are crazy people who have stockpiled enough weapons and ammunition and Lord knows what else in their mother’s basement, just waiting for Obama to knock on their door and take away their Second Amendment rights.
There are also a lot of decent people who feel the need to have guns in their home to protect their families. Fair enough. I have no problem with them. There are people who feel the need to walk around with guns strapped to their sides. That one, I don’t like. I know there are people who think it’s a great idea to allow guns in bars. Now you’ve lost me. I’ve bartended. I’ve been to plenty of bars in my life. If you think it’s a dandy idea to have a loaded gun strapped to some dude who likes to pound Jack and Cokes all night, and he is the type that sometimes has an issue when someone innocuously bumps into him on their way to the bathroom, you need to reassess.
Yes. I am typical liberal scum. I hate the NRA. I know the NRA has bought and paid for our cowardly politicians who won’t say “boo” against them, even though they have wielded massive power that allows for a lessening of gun restrictions, which directly results in massacres with assault rifles. They spent almost 3 million dollars on lobbying last year, and most of the money they give to politicians goes to the Republicans. That buys a lot of “do nothing about gun violence” votes in D.C.
The NRA and the oil cartels and the Wall Street wizards run our country. I think many of you understand that basic, sick, twisted fact. We don’t have continued subsides to billionaire profiteering oil companies, less regulations for the financial industry that destroyed our economy in 2008, and no restrictions on assault killing machines for nothing. President Obama, although the Tea Party crazies have said from day one that he will “take yer guns!”, has said nothing…DONE nothing…to take away your right to hug your guns at night. As a matter of fact, he gets “F’s” from the group who scores politicians on their actions or words to enact stricter gun control laws. Watch them all scurry away from any “controversy” on the matter. Mayor Bloomberg, however you feel about the issue, has been one of the few politicians with balls enough to go up against the NRA. Yeah, he wants to take away your right to chug a 100 ounce Pepsi AND your right to buy 6000 rounds of ammo over the internet so you can walk into a theater and kill 6 year-old little girls without so much as an eyebrow being raised. Get over it.
By the way, I wonder if this shooter was a Muslim, if any red flags would have gone up? Profiling anyone? Doesn’t always work, does it?
Why is it that the argument only gets framed as an either/or? Why can’t we regulate guns as we do lots of dangerous things in this country? In order for the privilege of driving in this country, you must take a written test, a practical test and have to license and insure your vehicle. How the hell is a gun any less dangerous than a car? Why shouldn’t you have to be tested to own one? I really don’t get it.
We regulate tobacco and alcohol. When I was a kid, you could smoke anywhere the hell you wanted to. Let me ask a parent today, would you like it if your kid had cigarette smoke blown in their face all day at a school or in a movie theater? Goodness gracious no. Somehow that seems reasonable to prohibit that. And please remember the tobacco industry and their lies and “studies” done by outfits they bought and paid for which tried like hell to stop people from putting restrictions in place. Smoking doesn’t hurt anyone. Second hand smoke is harmless. Don’t take away our “right” to smoke wherever the hell we want to. Freedom! Uh-huh.
Remember when people would drink and drive with very little penalty, and when stricter laws were enacted, how drunken driving rates went down, and less people were maimed or killed in accidents due to impaired driving? Many people were up in arms over that one too. Would you ever think it was a good idea to loosen up THOSE laws today? Didn’t think so.
But just let some panty-waist politico try to pry those assault rifles with 100 round clips outta your hands, and THEN we are gonna tussle. Second Amendment! Second Amendment! Oh brother. Get a grip. The Founding Fathers could never have foreseen the type of destruction and mayhem a rapid firing weapon could engender. Remember, these were the same guys who passed the buck for 20 years by maintaining the status quo of slavery; they weren’t exactly perfect and unfailing. I also maintain that while the First Amendment gives us the right to free speech, we still have restrictions on that right. The ultimate irony that you cannot yell fire in a crowded theater as part of the restrictions on free speech, yet a madman should be “allowed” to purchase an assault rifle without limits, which is ultimately used to mow down innocents in a theater because that particular weapon is protected by the NRA, is sickening and wrong.
No one is taking your guns, but many would like to see weaponry designed to kill as many people as possible within a minute stay in the hands of law enforcement or a real “well- regulated militia” and out of the hands of psychopaths and suicidal maniacs. Too much to ask? Really?
We live in very violent country. We heart our guns. We kill more people with guns than any other wealthy and industrialized nation in the world. We cry for the solution to that problem to be more guns…more guns…MORE GUNS!
No. If we get to a point where we only feel safe if we are packing, then the crazies win and civilization loses. America loses.
End the gun-show loopholes. Put in place the assault weapons ban like we had in the 90’s. Crap, remember the 90’s? A time when we had enough politicians who would actually put aside their own agendas long enough to work with the other party and compromise for the common good? Damn I miss that time. Did I really just say that?
End the NRA grip over Washington D.C. Let’s let reasonable people come together to fix a horrendous problem. Assault weapons and ammunition sold in bulk to people with mental health issues should never be tolerated in civil society. Gun ownership is a right, but it is also a responsibility.
Yes, criminals will get their guns and people will die. Sick, angry people will go on shooting sprees. However, if you require strict testing, close the loopholes, and if you make it illegal to own certain weaponry, the chances are greater that law enforcement will be able to stop and track and arrest people who wish to do harm by using them.
Where are the reasonable people? Where are the reasonable solutions? Where are the brave politicians?
Why is this so hard? Where is our common sense? Gun ownership is a right but does that preclude having any moral responsibilties where gun ownership is concerned? I hope not.
My deepest sympathies go out to the victims families in this awful and tragic time.