What a sad Friday. My thoughts and prayers go out to the victims and witnesses of the Newtown, Connecticut Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings today. In light of the events of the day, it is time to talk about gun control.
Talking about gun control is not politicizing a tragedy. If I fell off of a bridge and died, you wouldn’t be politicizing my death to talk about putting up a guardrail. The Second Amendment grants the right to all American Citizens to bear arms. I understand that we have never, ever changed or modified the Constitution ever, at all, even once, other than the 27 amendments attached to it that provide for our society’s ever-evolving perspectives on what is right and just and who actually counts as a citizen. And other than the first ten amendments which make up the Bill of Rights which were added a year after the Constitution was officially passed through Congress, of which the Second Amendment is a part. Though, apparently, those additions are ok because they happened in Olden Times. (The most recent Constitutional Amendment was in 1992.)
I digress. The Second Amendment, which allows individuals to bear arms for individual use or in militia work should the government become tyrannical, was written before semi-automatic weapons came into being. A single shot musket is a lot different than a 9mm handgun or a .233 caliber rifle. I would be thrilled if personal guns were outlawed and each gun pried from its civilian owner’s hand to be melted down into crude material so we could have gun metal Coke and Diet Coke cans for the rest of time. “What about the sport of hunting?!” If you really want to make hunting a sport, use a blow dart. Seriously.
My dream of collecting all the guns is not only impractical, but potentially not for the common good in the United States*. Some people use their guns for real things, like food or….? I don’t know what else people think their guns are for. Guns rarely protect homes in home invasions. For every asshole who has seen Taken and has thought, “If I was at [9/11, Columbine, The Empire State Building, Virginia Tech], shit would not have gone down that way,” you are incorrect. I have never been on a crowded New York City street and thought, “You know what would make me feel safer? If everyone around me was carrying a weapon.” And I have never thought that at an elementary school.
Gun control is a great example of how our country’s partisan attitude is out of control. As it stands now, if I talk about gun control as a Democrat, and then legislation gets passed, I “win” and Republicans “lose”. That is dumb. Pitting parties against each other over issues that affect American Safety is selfish and insane. Party pride should never be a factor when innocent lives are at risk. Neither should campaign contributions.
*Some things that would be productive for America are a mandatory Federalized waiting period before purchasing a gun, a letter from a licensed mental health professional before you are allowed to purchase a firearm, a ban on any convicted felon owning a gun, a ban on firearms in or around any place of education or worship, and mandatory license renewals complete with psychological examinations. These things should be taxed. Owning a gun should be expensive and inconvenient. Sorry.