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Today

I’m finally better. It only took three weeks to finally wake up and have some energy. The best part is I have to go to work tomorrow. So glad that I’m awake to do that. Nothing worse than going to work and falling asleep at my desk. (Not that I’ve done that, but boy it was hard to stay awake the last week or so.)

So today is another protest day. And, of course, social media is ablaze with it. It’s impossible to avoid it, which gets me thinking…

I can see why some people want to ban guns. Guns are weapons that can be used for some awful things. It might make a person feel safer if they know that the person next door doesn’t have a gun. But I’ve also lived in a place where police and ambulances were more than an hour away, and we had rattle snakes and wild pigs that would sometimes come in our yard. My parents had guns, and killed a few rattlers that were hiding in the play set where my sisters and I played every day. My dog was gored by a wild pig, stuck by a porcupine, and bitten by a rattle snake trying to protect us. Not to mention the humans out in the country with less than stellar performance.

But the part that really bothers me about this situation, that completely saddens me, is that everyone is ignoring the fact that the police dropped the ball so hard in that shooting. The boy was reported to police and the FBI more than 20 times, and no one did anything about it. Police didn’t go in when they got to the school. It was requested that he be institutionalized in 2016 and they didn’t do that. And none of this information was on his report when he bought a gun, legally. Why aren’t the protesters out there demanding the police be held accountable?

How can banning anything help if there is no one enforcing the laws we already have?

I’ve seen a lot of people who say there are problems with “gun enthusiasts.” That a collector who shoots guns for fun at a gun range is perpetrating the problem. They aren’t gun enthusiast, most of them have had family and friends who said ‘they were never interested in guns.” Actual enthusiasts are collectors, and sportsmen. They aren’t the problem.

How about hunters? No, they are in it for hunting deer.

How about depressed teenagers, or angry men? Well, it’s a place to start looking but even that has it’s problems.

So why is it happening? What is driving them? What’s in their life that isn’t being taken care of? Why aren’t they able to get help from councilors, teachers, bosses, family, or friends? All good questions that we are only beginning to ask.

Banning all the things never solved anything. Maybe it would be a start, maybe fewer people would have guns (at least legal ones), but the underlying problem wouldn’t be fixed. Who knows, maybe without guns the next perpetrator will take their own life instead of a lot of people, or maybe they will just grab a knife and use it instead like in this, this, or any of these. Or arson, like the man who killed 87 people. Or the bombings in Texas.

Yes, some reform could be used, and might be good. Having some sort of insurance on gun owners just like there is on car owners, or forcing all states to require gun safety classes, and actually enforce laws already on the books. Any of those things, and a few other things might help. But that doesn’t stop the underlying problem.

Maybe we could cut down on copycat killings by keeping the media from naming shooters, or giving them any press. Focus on the families, and people effected. Having better mental health access, and perhaps something more geared to men. Maybe we could find out why men are failing in schools, or why they are more prone to depression and suicide. All of these could be a start.

What is the problem? I don’t know. There are 7 billion people on this planet, and a lot of them are feeling a little hopeless. A lot of them have been taught some pretty terrible things. Others are just not mentally stable and can’t get the help they need. But “ban all the things” doesn’t stop the problem, it just covers it up for a little while till it happens in a different way.

But that’s my 2-cents about it. Sadly very few people are listening to the “other side” right now. They believe what they believe, and ignore everything else. Again, it doesn’t solve the problem.

I wonder when humanity will start listening to each other.

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Posted by on March 25, 2018 in On Writing

 

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