I'm all for sensible, reasonable gun control laws (automatic weapons should be banned), but let's be honest. We can't even get people to wear their seat belts or not text and drive. How are we going to enforce a law that deals with a subject that is mostly hidden from public view? Guns used for crime purposes are not bought in a store. Their owners don't apply for licenses.
The NRA is a powerful lobby, but it isn't responsible for most of the crimes committed. We have to stop blaming them for EVERYTHING gun related. Greed and insanity contribute to killing sprees. Figure out a way to eliminate both from the human genome and you might have a solution.
As with all positive and negative acts, it's never a question of tens of millions of people. It is the small, the few, the unnoticed, who are responsible for the most beneficial and the most horrific of occurrences. When discussing mental illness, we must accept that the best we can hope for is control through medication. There is no cure.
Most Americans who own guns are law abiding citizens. They have no intention of hurting anyone. Criminals are another story. Laws are only good if we have the manpower to enforce them. With all the cutbacks to police departments necessitated by our dwindling economy, who is going to patrol the back alleys and deserted buildings where illegal gun sales are made? Tweaking existing guns laws is a good idea, but it isn’t enough. What we really need is to become harder on crime. We also need to remember atrocities like Newtown long after the headlines move on to another story. We forget far too quickly!
Here’s an example of how fast ugliness fades: One day after 9/11, my husband & I drove cross country. Everywhere we went, billboards proclaimed Americans loyalty for their country. Cars sported the flag flying from antennae. Bumper stickers professed “Love the USA!” Strangers greeted each. We actually looked into each other's eyes as we held open doors or said “Hello.”
Two months later, we made the trip again. The billboards were ripped and tattered. Tennis balls had replaced the flags on cars. People had gone back to their surly ways. I remember feeling intensely sad. Shortly thereafter, images of the World Trade Center were removed from films, logos, advertisements and photos. Again, I was sad. I didn't want to forget. We should never forget tragedies like 9/11 and Newtown least they repeat themselves. And… repeat themselves they will. The sad truth is that this will happen again because there is no way to prepare for every possible scenario in which evil rears its ugly head.
To a certain extent I blame the media. Almost immediately after Adam Lanza’s deeds became known, a neighbor spoke to a reporter attesting to Mrs. Lanza's controlling nature at home. When pressed for facts, she admitted she didn’t know Mrs. Lanza, had never been inside the house and only surmised that was the situation. Then, we had the hair salon employees proving Andy Warhol's 15 minute pronouncement. We already knew Adam Lanza was a troubled young man. What further proof do we need than the fact that he killed innocent children? He didn't speak? So, what? Mute is not an indication of anything but, maybe, the good sense not to share your life with strangers.
As intelligent beings, we have to stop believing everything that is reported. Sensationalism drives the media... not facts! The only person who knows why Adam Lanza acted as he did is Adam Lanza... and he can't tell us. Why can't people take the high road and keep their comments to themselves unless they are giving an eye witness account to the police. The Martin/Zimmerman case in Florida suffers from the same need for people to hear themselves talk and see their name in print.
Rather than being fooled into thinking that more gun control laws will protect us, we should demand that violent crimes where death occurs be punished by life in prison without parole or lethal injection.
For the mentally ill, "By reason of mental defect" is not a reason for leniency. Insanity is not curable! Throw those keys away! One of our greatest needs as a nation is to provide health insurance and permanent residence care for the mentally ill.
We all have opinions -- and you know what they say about that! Too much information, especially erroneous information, is detrimental to the police doing their jobs in an effective manner and, occasionally, inspires other lunatics to prove they can do a better job of killing people.
Let’s all advocate for the money and manpower to enforce existing laws. Let’s prosecute those who break the law to the fullest extent possible. Let’s assume responsibility for our actions and let’s make common sense a little more common in the way we live our lives.