Another school shooting

Another school shooting…my heart hurts so bad. I still cry when I see things about it on the news or on social media. And it makes me sad and angry at the same time.

I really do not want to be one of the people who becomes so hardened on one side or the other of the issue, but it is getting harder and harder for me. I know good, responsible people who own and use guns, and I try hard not to lump all gun owners into a group of people who don’t care about anything but their right to own a gun, but it is getting harder and harder.

I have a thought – perhaps we could have a conversation about guns, and not invite the NRA to participate. They seem to be the ones who are making this into an “if you want to put any controls on guns whatsoever that is taking my rights away” conversation.

I do not claim to speak for anyone but myself here, but I am willing to put money on the fact that there are more people out there who think along similar lines that I do. Why is enforcing decent background checks on ALL gun purchases a bad thing? I am not saying that you cannot own a gun; I am just saying that if you want to own a gun, you should be willing to wait a decent amount of time to get it. Society should have a right to make sure that there is nothing in your background that points to the fact that you shouldn’t have a gun. I can’t for the life of me figure out why you need a gun right now this very minute, unless it is for something bad. You say you have a hunting trip coming up tomorrow? Then you should be able to plan ahead and give yourself enough time to pass the background check and get your gun in time for the trip. You can’t get a passport in a 1/2 hour so that you can take a spontaneous trip to Europe – you need to either have a passport or give yourself enough time to get one. If you have had restraining orders taken out on you because you have hurt or threatened to hurt  someone in the past, then I understand why you don’t want to have to pass a background check – and to my mind that is exactly why you should have to.

As I said, I don’t want to take your guns away, but I do think that there are weapons that do not need to be out on the streets in civilian hands. Why do you need an automatic weapon? Where does it stop – do you also need a bazooka? An atomic weapon? Why do you need a weapon that was created solely for the purpose of hunting down other people?

So maybe you, personally, are not the type who would ever let your weapon get into the hands of someone who should not have it. Are you willing to let all these mass shootings go on just so that you can still have your guns? What is the limit for you? Do 100 people have to die in a mass shooting before you are willing to to let real background checks happen? Does it have to be a certain number of people per day? What exactly is your limit? Does it have to be a relative of yours that dies in one of these shootings before we can talk about sane and sensible rules about gun ownership? Would that be a close relative, or even a distant relative? Does your cousin count, or does it have to be a sister or brother? Does an in-law count, or do they have to be related by blood?

Oops – I am starting to get to the “you don’t need any gun at all” stage. You know, there are some gun owners out there who are not doing you reasonable gun owners any favors. Because I am at the point, and I think there are many like me, who are close to saying screw it. If you are going to be stupid about it and pretend that people are coming for your guns, then let’s put you all together somewhere and let you shoot yourselves, and leave the rest of us, including our children, alone. And if you insist on saying that people are coming for your guns, since you won’t believe anything else anyway, let’s just go ahead and take all the guns.

And to the many, many people who say it’s not a gun problem, it’s a people problem – listen closely. It is a people with guns problem. Yes, if people couldn’t get guns, they might use something else – say a knife or a baseball bat. And while they could do damage with either, they couldn’t do as much damage as quickly as they could with a gun. No, we can’t make everything 100% safe for everyone 100% of the time. But shouldn’t we at least attempt to keep our children safe?

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