Greg Lance – Watkins
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Each and every time we are subjected to the same arguments, a circular merry-go-round of desperate anger from families and mainstream Americans, shocking bad faith by those who want to preserve the status quo, and callous opportunism by those trying to shoehorn their own separate issue advocacy into the discussion. The cycle of violence and reaction is a mandala of pain and futility.
And every time the bottom line is and remains the same: if you want to end gun violence, reduce the number of guns. It’s that simple. There is no other answer. The simple reason is that the only difference between America and other industrialized nations on the issues so often blamed for gun violence is access to guns.
It’s not mental health. While American underfunded treatment of mental health issues is terrible, mental illness is also often stigmatized and underfunded in other countries. Nor is there any reason to believe that Americans are, per capita, suffering from greater mental illness than Japanese or Swedes or Peruvians.
It’s not violent movies or video games. Every industrialized culture across the world consumes these entertainments. The French, the Kenyans and the South Koreans watch The Matrix and play Halo, but they don’t have a school shooting every week.
It’s not politics or policing. Sure, the baleful forces that produced Trumpism have given a rise to violent white supremacist groups, of which the latest shooter was one. But as the shooting of Congressman Scalise last year demonstrated, gun violence doesn’t have a single political origin and conservatives can also be its victims. Violent and racist cops kill the dangerous and innocent alike without repercussions, but it’s also true that other countries don’t have prejudice-free police forces. The reality is that other nations’ police are less frequently armed and don’t have itchy trigger fingers–in large part because they’re not expecting that any random civilian might pull out a gun against them in a moment’s notice.
It’s not diversity, as racist conservatives like to claim. Ethno-nationalists obsess constantly over how large immigrant populations have planted roots in Europe, with predictable political and social conflicts born of nativism and bigotry. But while there have been flashpoints, none of it has led to a significant statistical increase in gun violence.
It’s not toxic masculinity, either. To be more accurate: it is to a large extent as the overwhelming percentage of male shooters and the insecurities behind most of their motives attest, but America is not unique in its toxic masculinity, as anyone who has ever stepped foot in any other country and experienced their own takes on misogyny and male puffery can attest. The Italian people elected Silvio Berlusconi and are famous for their buffoonish machismo, but their communities don’t suffer from paroxysms of gunfire.
There is only one common denominator: the guns. There is no cultural solution to this problem. There is no funding solution to this problem. There is no other, easy way out.
Either we reduce access to guns (and particularly to semi-automatic rifles), or we are going to see this again. And again. And again. And again.
But if we must continue to endure the killings, at least let’s stop going through the cycle of the same garbage arguments. Let’s just concede that we are choosing to place the right of people to own weapons of death, over the lives of thousands–including schoolchildren.
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Just ask yourself a few relevant questions, starting with:
- First ask yourself how on earth a society pretending to being civilised can justify arming its citizens in a manner that can lead to a shooting in a school every 60 hours with multiple deaths of upto 17 per incident 01-Jan-2018 > 15-Feb-2018 equivalent to appx. 150 school shootings a year!
- If killers didn’t have firearms howmany school children could they kill on a solo rampage?
- What percentage of killers & serial killers in America are found not to be mentally adequate to stand trial?
- What is the claimed use citizens could use military assault weapons for either logicaly or legitimately?
- If the society is unprepared to protect its children just who is it designed to protect? Maybe just the NRA & corrupt politicians and police?
- Noting that almost every firearms attrocity, including the many unprosecuted Police murders, are committed by men, why are American men so inadequate that they need firearms to prop up their pathetic egos?
- In a society that retains the death penalty when was the last time a police officer was executed for killing an innocent citizen, (one not provably involved in a capital crime)?
- Even if the Constitution’s Second Amendment “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” drawn up when the musket was the most sofisticated weapon & the amendment was never intended as a weapon of attack but of defence, nowhere does it speak of weapons of mass destruction or holding an armoury of weapons, nor ammunition!
- Surely it is an act of total political irresponsibility that the politicians fail to protect citizens from death and injury of its citizens?
- Can anyone with any intelligence believe that the intention of the Founding Fathers was to include the 2nd. Amendment to result in the mass murder of innocent citizens. Further can anyone name a single firearms death within the aims of the 2nd. Amendment as pertaining to ‘a well regulated Militia’ since 15-Dec-1791?
- How can a society pretending to civilised standards accept the death of 34,000 citizens per annum from firearms, 1,000 of which are at the hands of Police with 74,000 non fatal injuries inflicted by firearms – without introducing more effective firearms controls?
I would therefore contend that every single death resulting from ownership of firearms is the direct responsibility of incompetent Politicians, failing in their duty of care for innocent citizens, aided and abetted by a clearly corrupt Supreme Court’s obdurate refusal to consider intent in matters relative to the 2nd. Amendment of 15-Dec-1791.
Therefore in a just society there is no possible defence against claims of damages & compensation against those who culpably, by abrogation of duty, for arming the killers.
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