Monday, February 19, 2018

This Isn't The Blog I Wanted To Write

I wanted to write about the Olympics this week. I can't. I wanted to do an uplifting piece about the world coming together in the spirit of good sportsmanship. I can't.

Title: Arms | Date: 12/31/2007 | Photographer: Hrs | This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.
At least 17 people were killed, and 14 others were injured, when 19 year old Nikolas Cruz opened fire at a high school in Parkland, Florida, last Wednesday afternoon, Morning Joe reported.

I could give you details about the life of Cruz and where he went after the shooting, but this is not a news blog. If you want those details you can go to MSNBC for those facts. The best I can do is try to put things into some kind of perspective.

Since the murders, our lawmakers have been debating gun control. This may look like a step in the right direction, until you take into account that they have had the exact same debates after every mass killing. They will rattle sabres for about three weeks.  Then, once the news trucks are gone, it will be business as usual in Washington.

On October 1st of last year a gunman shot up a country music concert in Las Vegas killing 58 people and wounding 851 more. In order to rack up these numbers the gunman used a bump stock to modify his semi-automatic rifles so they would fire at the rate automatic rifles do.

For a few weeks after the slaughter, Democrats proposed legislation to ban the bump stock. Our lawmakers were so bum-fuzzled scared of second amendment advocates that they couldn't even agree to outlaw the bump stock. We weren't even talking about outlawing a gun. We were talking about outlawing an adaptation, which allows legal guns to work as illegal guns.

The second amendment guarantees our right to bear arms. It says nothing about our right to own bump stocks. For that matter, most scholars believe it allows citizens to own hand guns for self defense and rifles for hunting, but the right does not extend to owning assault weapons.  George Washington and the gang had no concept of weapons expelling ammo at 90 rounds per minute. Even if you don't agree, and you believe semi-automatic assault weapons are protected by law, can't we at least agree to ban the bump stock?

I know what you're thinking. You're thinking, "If our leaders are not willing to do something, what can I do?" My answer to that is, we can all be vigilant. According to CNN, a grandmother in Everett, Washington called the police when she perused her grandson's journal and learned he was going to shoot up his school.  She saved lives.

Now don't start quoting George Orwell to me. Yes, I read 1984 too. I'm not advocating for turning in our neighbors for thinking wrong thoughts about the state. However, when somebody posts on Facebook, "I want to be a professional school shooter," it's probably a good idea to ask some questions and alert authorities.

The following video from the Miami Herald lists those who had there lives cut short because our society can't differentiate between the right to carry a handgun for protection or a rifle for hunting, and the desire to own military grade weapons which can kill 60 people a minute.

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