Originally Posted by Mad About Drums
It's not the guns that are problem, I agree, but guns in the wrong hands are a disaster waiting to happen, you need to find a solution for the hands, not for the guns.Which bring us back to the point raised by Mary...
I agree with this and although I do believe in the right to bear arms, there are still many areas of improvement that can be made to the gun control laws we already have.
In addition to gun control reform and or improvement, this tragedy should also invoke the issues of improving awareness, security to vulnerable public places, crisis training, etc..
Larry touched on an interesting aspect to all of this. Our culture and history have a lot to do with this. The USA was born of rebellion and violence. Our country celebrates it in a way with film, TV and literature as entertainment. The media contributes to the incessant exposure to violence. We are becoming more and more desensitized to it even by our increased awareness of it.
In our modern world today, just our incredible access to information and current events offers up more possibilities that we could be putting more ideas into the heads of the truly insane people that would do these things.
Back in 1927, I'll bet that a very small percentage of the population would have heard about the school massacre in Bath, Michigan.
Even in a firearms abolitionists perfect world of zero firearms in anyone's hands (if they just didn't exist) crazy people will find a way to do crazy things. It doesn't mean we shouldn't try to improve our situation but accepting the fact that a "no weapons world" does not exist should prompt us to look more closely at the realistic things we can do.
I am always amazed at how almost all of the people that are so anti-gun don't really concern themselves at all with their personal security.
Except for those that are truly pacifists and would rather die than defend themselves violently, I think many of the no-gun crowd would probably prove to be hypocrites if this issue hit closer to home.
I remember when I used to live in DC, there was a Washington Post columnist that was very anti-gun. Carl Rowan was extremely outspoken about restricting the sale of hand guns.
A Wiki excerpt: Rowan gained public notoriety on June 14, 1988, when he shot an unarmed teenage trespasser, Neil Smith, who was on his property illegally. "The interloper was a near-naked teenager who had been skinny-dipping with friends in Rowan's pool, and the columnist's weapon was an unregistered, and thus very illegal, .22 caliber pistol." ..
.. Rowen was charged for firing a gun that he did not legally own. Rowan was arrested and tried. During the trial, he argued that he had the right to use whatever means necessary to protect himself and his family. He also said the pistol he used was exempt from the District's handgun prohibition law because it belonged to his older son, a former FBI agent. Critics charged hypocrisy, since Rowan was a strict gun control advocate. In a 1981 column, he advocated "a law that says anyone found in possession of a handgun except a legitimate officer of the law goes to jail—period." In 1985, he called for "A complete and universal federal ban on the sale, manufacture, importation and possession of handguns (except for authorized police and military personnel).]</ref>--> Private gun ownership had been illegal in the District of Columbia since 1976 and the facts of the case were the talk of the town for many days.
Rowan was tried but the jury was deadlocked; the judge declared a mistrial and he was never retried. In his autobiography, Rowan said he still favors gun control, but admits being vulnerable to a charge of hypocrisy.
I offer this story in hopes that we might spend the rest of this thread, for however long it lasts, in IMO, on the more important issues of improving school security, training and any other ways we can find to stop this kind of thing from happening in the future.
Ultimately, there is no complete solution to avoiding another tragedy. One day, we're going to read a story about a soccer mom that notices a perp in her kids school parking lot. When she sees him take out a weapon and approach the school, she runs him over with her mini-van averting a disaster.
In an unfortunate way, this will be some of the progress that we are looking for.
Sorry for the long rant. I keep thinking about those poor kids and I get so bothered by it all.