The argument for not implementing gun control is a safe one from a political standpoint; gun advocates are gingerly saying that we need to slow down and not act in haste in response to the Connecticut tragedy. It is the safe position, one that pretends they’re going to listen to both sides now. But it is nothing more than a tactic to let time pass to lower the emotion of the moment. It is a common political tack when one side in an issue is backed into a corner. The cornered side argues that rushing to action is a mistake, that bad laws are written out of haste, that we must deliberate long, debate long, and long-weigh-out the options. We must convene commissions to study the issue, commission research, engage in a vigorous public debate – and thereby, give lobbyists and their marketing firms time to fine tune their opposition to action.
We must not act they argue, because it is important to avoid doing the wrong thing in haste.
But to my mind, we have had this gun control debate for years and years and the evidence for one side of the argument is crushing and overwhelming. We must act because continued provision of the instruments (guns) for killing little children should not be up for debate.
Real changes must be made. Something must be done. Continuing the argument for decades has not resolved the problem. People are dying from lack of action.
It is not debatable that guns are central to the problem. These are military grade guns with killing bullets in large clips that enable crazy people to shoot many times in a short span of time to kill large numbers of people without regard for age or innocence.
Guns are only one part of the violence, but in a multi-part problem, each part may be addressed separately or in an omnibus solution. Gun advocates are coming out of hiding now to say that we should WAIT!!! because guns are only part of the problem.
Yet we’re told by the paranoid that we have to arm ourselves against our government. They tell us that we should be able to keep guns, big guns, small guns, lots of guns, and thousands of bullets. They believe it’s the only way our democracy can be secured.
I don’t believe that a bunch of people with assault rifles are what secures our democracy. I believe it is citizens who are committed to working together to keep it going, who are committed to protecting its values and principles. I don’t think guns secure us against tyranny.
I’ve seen air shows showcasing military capabilities. I’ve seen the wars on television. I’ve seen the movies about the Green Berets and the Navy Seals. All of this tells me that you can’t have enough guns to protect yourself from our military. We’re vulnerable to our government no matter how many AK 47’s are sold. If our military turns on us, the death toll in the Civil War will be miniscule by comparison.
So if you must be paranoid, you will be – with or without a gun – and with good reason. Our military is lethal, just as we intend it to be.
But guns do not solve the threat of someone taking control of our government and turning these weapons of mass destruction inwardly. That could happen, as could Russia or China drop a nuke on us. Things could take an ugly turn on many fronts.
But paranoid fantasies of extreme conservative beliefs should not limit our children’s ability to go to school without fear of some lunatic walking in with a military rifle to kill them.
For me it is that simple. If our government turns on us, all of these stupid assault rifles may stop it but our pop guns are not going to stop all our tanks, drones, cruise missiles, Navy Seals, etc.
All we’re really protecting – by protecting the right to bear insane levels of guns and ammo – is the right of companies to make money selling them. Simple weapons do not make anyone safer against a military that its citizens have armed to be the best in the world.
I believe it is the active involvement and conscience of the citizens inside and outside the military that keeps this democracy going, not the guns.
It is clear to me that crazy lunatics with guns pose a much more direct threat to our safety than our government. We need to control how much access is given to these weapons.