Saturday, April 1, 2023

An Assault on Our Nation

I don't hate guns. As a kid my Dad let us shoot bb-guns and even his 22-shotgun. So I get the rush. I get the fun of shooting a can off a fence and for those into hunting I get that it can be a family tradition and a bonding experience. I know several humane and decent people who eat what they shoot and though not my thing I understand the primordial urge to hunt for prey.  

What I don't get is how we went from the NRA and gun owners wanting to encourage firearm education and responsibility to a free-for-all of anyone under any circumstance owning weapons of war? 

I loved lawn jarts but we don't sell those anymore because they caused a lot of injuries and took out many an eye. Three children died from lawn jarts so they were banned, can't be resold and also can't be used in public spaces. So for fucks sake, how are we allowing our kids to be slaughtered and terrorized at school and not at least agreeing on the basics of gun safety? How can anyone look at this girl on a school bus fleeing horror and not think we have a problem?

Firearms are the #1 cause of death for children and teens. It used to be auto accidents but we made cars safer, enacted seatbelt laws and did other things to focus on the issue. In contrast, we have put more guns out in the country and have numbed ourselves into accepting that school shootings are a way of life. That active shooter drills aren't causing anxiety in our kids. That politics is us against them when it should be all hands on deck to save lives. Children's lives!

This is not even touching on the suicide and homicide and violence that more guns have brought to our streets. Those stats might be overlook-able to gun lovers since they think it won't affect them. But how can we sit by and let someone's hobby and fun become the number one killer of our kids?

And for those who like to cite the 2nd Amendment I ask if they have indeed read it:
A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

WELL-REGULATED!! That's how it starts. And the right is tied to being part of the militia to secure the state you reside in. Not to mention this was ratified in musket times. It in no way implies that anyone can own weapons of war for their own fun and pleasure. As a matter of fact it reads to me as this right comes with the responsibility to protect your own state and the citizens within it. 

So here is my solution: anyone who wants to own an automatic/semi-automatic/war-like gun needs to be trained, licensed (the regulated part) and on call for state emergencies (the security of the State part). 
I think this is not only grammatically aligned with the Constitution but is in the spirit of what our Founders had in mind.
Our military and police are not just handed weapons- they are trained in their use, when to use them, how to store them and the consequences of firing them. There is a reverence for what they can do and the responsibility for caring one on your person. They pledge to protect the public/country from harm. That is what we need from gun owners now. 

If you won't defend your State and the children that reside in it, you have forfeited this right.