Yesterday a mixed up young man was convicted of mass murder in a Colorado movie theatre and on that same day an angry young man shot to death four Marines in Chattanooga, Tennessee, and a few weeks ago another angry white racist young man murdered several people in a black church in South Carolina, and not long ago another misfit of a young man murdered a class full of little school children — and the list of atrocities goes on and on in this modern age.
There are some commonalities in all of these incidents. All the atrocities were committed by young impressionable men. Also in some of them twisted views of religion (or maybe twisted religion) plays a part.
And then in some of the mass murders, 9-11 being the big one, fanatical Islam plays the major role. It seems to have in this most recent one.
But the biggest commonality is that in most of these murders easy access to high-powered automatic weapons plays a major role. I guess that is not the case in the 9-11 attack since as I recall the weapons used were box cutters — so yes for you die-hard fans of everyone packing weapons, if you outlaw guns then either the criminals will not follow the law or they will just use another kind of weapon.
But seriously, because of our inability to shake or deal with the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, we are hamstrung when it comes to sensible gun control. I thought that when that class full of school children was gunned downed that the public would be so horrified that for sure stricter controls on high-powered automatic weapons would be enacted.
But the right of everyone to possess deadly weapons seems ingrained into the American psyche, even though admittedly not everyone supports the notion that there is such a right. I myself have an ambivalent attitude toward the perceived right of every man woman and child having the right to pack a weapon, to include a military assault rifle. I have always felt that I support the Second Amendment because there is something unique about being a United States citizen in that our own government must contend with the fact that it faces an armed public — that might give some would-be dictators or plotters of a military coup some pause. In addition, it says that the individual is responsible to himself (or herself) and does not totally depend upon the government for protection.
But I know that in my visit to Spain last year some of the people I met there could not comprehend our fascination with guns or the right of every citizen to have them.
I know that if you can outlaw one kind of fire arm then the door is open to a ban on all, but I still cannot comprehend why we must guarantee the right or at least tolerate citizens carrying around military assault weapons that are meant for only one thing: to kill a whole bunch of people at once.
And go ahead and read the actual Second Amendment and try to decipher what the connection or meaning is concerning a well-regulated militia. From what I have read on the subject it may have been a bit ambiguous when it was enacted and it certainly is now.