Yesterday was October 1st. I love October. October is my favorite month of the year. We had tickets to see the "Rise of the Jack-O-Lanterns" at Desconso Gardens to kick off the Halloween season. I was looking forward to writing about the amazingly artistic and creative ways artists had carved Jack-O-Lanterns. They truly are works of art. But something else happened yesterday that tainted my will to write about art. Yesterday there was another shooting at another school. It's a scary time to be alive. Even before the body count was official, newscasters and police were saying, "We don't know what the shooter's motive might have been." and "We'll have to wait and try to learn why the shooter did such a horrible thing." When the shooter was killed in a final shoot out with police, they said, "We may never know what his true motive was."
Motive? Reason? Why did he do it? WTF and why does it matter. It's as if there is some motive we can discover through our research that would justify his rationale. Is there any reason that would make us say, "Well those students had it coming. I mean it was the first week of class. They knew education was dangerous when they decided to get a degree." No, there is no reason, there is no idea that could ever justify mass murder.
One unsuccessful mass murder tries to blow up a plane with a shoe bomb and instantly everyone flying on an airplane has to take off their shoes before boarding. One unsuccessful bomber tries to take down a a plane with and underwear bomb and now everyone is X-rayed before getting on a plane. Several rumors circulated that terrorist might be bringing explosives on board planes as liquids, and everyone has to declare their toothpaste.
According to CNN from 2004-2013 a total of 313 people have been killed by violence associated with terrorism. During that same time 316,545 people have been killed by fire arms. Where is our outrage? Why is it that I need to provide more information about myself to get on an airplane than I do to buy a gun? There are lots of people who are on "no fly" lists, where are the "no gun" lists?
Since 1950 there have been 339 shootings at schools around the country. That's only schools not post offices, liquor stores, movie theaters or churches, and the only thing that has been done is well, nothing. I assumed that after Sandy Hook when children were slaughtered the country would finally address the situation. We were outraged, we set up teddy bear memorials, we said never again, we were all agreed that none of those children "had it coming" at Sandy Hook. Yet the sale of guns increased.
I know that there are some NRA supporters who will now quote the second amendment to me and say that more not less guns are needed. If those students had been armed then, By God, there wouldn't have been a mass killing. They will also say that we already have laws that keep some people from buying guns. And if you keep good people from having guns then only the "bad" guys will have them.
So the solution is to regress to the Wild West where everyone openly carries a gun. Two guys can get into a fight in a Saloon and take it out to the street where the fastest draw will prevail. Well, I can guarantee that if it comes to that, the "bad" guys will be the fastest draw.
Oh yeah, but we have the second amendment so that we can protect ourselves from a government take over. Believe me if the government wants to take over, your 9 millimeter is not going to be a lot of protection against a Bradley Fighting vehicle and trained soldiers with rocket propelled grenades. I suppose you could use that pea shooter to kill your wife and kids so they won't have to suffer, or better yet shoot yourself in the head and just avoid all of it.
This morning I heard someone criticize President Obama for taking a stance against guns before the facts of this case were known. Facts? Motive? Reason? How about 316,545 deaths in nine years as a fact? How about 316,545 shootings as a motive? How about 316,545 deaths because someone one had a gun as a reason? If 316,545 American deaths occurred in nine years from any other reason than shootings it would be considered an emergency epidemic and Americans we would be screaming for a vaccine.
At one time the fact that thousands of people were dying from smoking was covered up in the name of making money for the tobacco industry. These huge companies did not care that they were making a product that was killing people, they just wanted more money.
The military Industrial complex that General Dwight Eisenhower warned against is here. From small hand gun manufacturers to the government contractors providing nuclear missiles, it is a multi-Trillion dollar industry that feeds on fear. They make us afraid so they can sell us "their" solution. They tell us the bad guys have guns so we need bigger guns. They then sell the bigger guns to the bad guys and tell us to be more afraid so they can keep the escalation going. They convince the public that the NRA is protecting our American rights, when the truth is the Military Industrial Complex is actually using them. They think they are being patriotic, when instead they are helping weapon manufactures continue to make trillions of dollars. As of this writing it has been determined the college shooter in Oregon had 6 guns with him and another 7 at home.
Do not be afraid of a government taking our guns, but be very afraid of the immoral capitalistic manufactures that are selling them. Money trumps everything in a capitalistic economy. Money trumps ethics, morality and truth. Money even trumps the lives of the 10 people killed in Oregon yesterday just like it did three years when 20 elementary school children in and 6 of their teachers were shot.
It is October, Halloween season. It's a scary time to be alive.
As you were,