Las Vegas...after trying to come to terms with my emotions of three (yes, three) hurricanes that hit our citizens and devastated islands we called paradise, aren't we all just overwhelmed? Emotionally and maybe physically, as well, out of gas.
Would a more compassionate and more uniting leader have made any difference? Who knows, we don't have that option.
But today I am hearing and thinking about gun control, again.
For the umpteenth time in the past few years we are talking about why we have so many more gun deaths than any other civilized country. The only difference seems to be that we have comparatively fewer restrictions and a cultural love of the all mighty gun. And it can be all mighty because the only defense of a gun wielder is another gun wielder. So why do we have this love of the gun? Why don't other countries?
Why does every gun discussion come down to hunters and home defense?
For me...I was raised in a house with some guns. I was married many years ago to a hunter who owned a few guns. I never liked them. I shot a gun a couple times. I didn't like it. Having said that, I didn't care if they were in my home as long as they were safely stored and used appropriately. They were.
Today however, I do not want one in my home and I do care if anyone who wants one can buy one legally. I do care that many people do not safely store guns in homes where toddlers and teenagers alike could, and now and then do, kill themselves or siblings or friends with one which was stored unloaded and high away where they were thought to be safe.
I have watched experiments on TV with kids of all ages "finding" a planted gun to see what they will do. Every time the kid will pick up that gun! Sometimes while saying they shouldn't touch it and they need to tell someone. They WILL pick it up. You cannot trust any child of any age to be in close proximity to a gun and not touch it.
I have no issue with hunters owning hunting guns. Give them a background check, put them through a training coarse, nationally register them and their guns, and renew those registrations annually or at least every two years. Just like your car. You can't drive without a training session, a license and a renewable registration.
Handguns are okay, too. Training, background checks and nationally registered with renewals...sure.
I would love to see limits on how many you can own. Like animals, you have to prove you have the right situation to own a bazillion animals. You'll lose them to rescues if you don't. You have to be inspected now and then for these situations and they don't kill people.
I agree that we have a gun culture in the United States, but I'm not sure why except that the NRA created it and our hunters loved it. Guns for guns sake...collectors...sure, but really, how many are there? And how much of this culture developed because Obama was going to confiscate everyone's guns? Or so said the NRA. Again, background, training, registration.
My boys all have guns and think I'm crazy and a flaming liberal. They are entitled to their beliefs. I am entitled to mine.The biggest difference is that my wishes might save a few hundred lives in the next few years and their's will only save them having to get background checks, training courses and registration. It will not change anything else.
Gun shows? No. Gun stores? Yes. Internet sales? No.
I've never proposed people shouldn't be allowed to own guns. I propose that some people should not have guns and that often we could sort them out BEFORE they kill a group of innocent humans for sport or out of pure hate for someone or something they perceive.
I don't think all shooters are mentally ill. I think many are hare filled for a variety of reasons. I think our liberal gun laws allow them to fully execute their barbaric killing sprees. Remember none of the shooters used illegally purchased guns. That is an important factor.
So...it's a hot topic today. It's been a hot topic before. It'll likely be no topic in a few weeks because Americans have short attention spans. Congress has no interest even though two of them have been shot, seriously wounded with permanent injuries by legally obtained guns in the hands of haters with no value for human life, including their own, apparently.
I guess I just don't understand...empathy is non-existent in much of my country. The ability to be in someone else's pain is beyond the grasp of too many Americans. It just can't always be about "me" at the cost of innocent lives. Can it?
Back to that leadership question above. Maybe if we had that empathetic leader who could see the pain, feel the pain these shooters cause, maybe it might help sway Congress to act on our best interest, once. To find a compromise that would sit well with both sides can't be that difficult. Can it?