We are faced with the awful tragedy of 17 school children who lost their lives in Florida, and another shooting just today in Maryland. America’s preoccupation with guns to defend ourselves has led to a repeat of this tragedy too many times. Whether this happens in Columbine, or Las Vegas, or Chicago, this loss of life is senseless and can be avoided. In America, you can have a gun if you want one - even if you have to purchase it illegally. Our second amendment rights, we are told, guarantee it.
It doesn’t seem to matter if you are mentally deranged, on the do not fly registry, or even a teenager - you can get an AR-15 Assault Rifle by simply ordering one or if you have the money, buying one. And, there seems little or nothing that can be done about it - or, so we are told by our congressmen and women, who seem beguiled by the money of the National Rifle Association (NRA).
Current laws that are meant to protect us are putting our children more at risk. The proposal to arm teachers to prevent these types of occurrences at schools is ridiculous on the face of it. Even teachers are not immune to mental illness. Who will protect us then? Can we rely on the law enforcement presence that is already there? Recent examples teach us not to put much stock in that. Even if every student at the school had a weapon and a concealed carry permit, we may be arming the person who is the most dangerous. And if our child is the one killed, it would still be one too many.
We must pass sensible gun laws. This must be a national change. Assault Rifles such as the AR-15 should be illegal to purchase. Manufacturers have to be held liable. A reasonable waiting period and background checks must be required. Not only teenagers - but every person must prove his or her worthiness to own a weapon. Possession of an unregistered handgun should be a felony. You can’t be on the no-fly list and buy any weapon. Arm shows should be strictly regulated and any dealer who sells guns to a person who commits a crime can be considered an accomplice. I believe people who accept NRA money should be defeated.
We must get a grip on our belief that all things can be solved by the use of force. Our gangs, our policemen, our politicians, and many in our country have this false belief. The Revolutionary War is over. The cowboy days are gone. We hold on to antiquated policies and practices that put us in peril. It is time for a change. Let’s put an end to this foolishness.
This gun thing has gotten out of hand. It seems to be a problem too big to solve. But solve it we must. Our very society depends on us coming up with solutions, not to mention our safety and the safety of our children. Let’s put an end to this foolishness.