In the wake of the most recent school shooting, some are calling for tighter gun control laws, which seems to make some sense (at least on an emotional level)—though I believe it would do little or nothing to actually prevent another mass killing. And surprisingly, many are actually calling for the banning of ALL guns. On a purely emotional basis, that may seem like a valid and logical “solution,” but it’s not, in my opinion.
Granted, if there were no guns, there would be no more shootings (mass or otherwise); but remember… Timothy McVeigh didn’t use a gun. I’m not pro or con gun. I could care less, because I choose not to own one. But I am pro-solutions, and to actually solve a problem, one must understand the problem—and then cure it at its root. The use of guns in these types of attacks is merely a “symptom” of the real problem, in my opinion. The actual problem exists largely in the psychology of certain individuals, and in the changing psychology and evolving values-systems within our society. It’s primarily a combination social, values-system, and mental health issue rather than a weapons issue, I think. Don’t forget that:
- Just a few hours before the Newtown, Connecticut massacre, a man stabbed 23 children in a Chinese elementary school—with a KNIFE.
- In March 2010, eight children were murdered in China, by a 41-year-old KNIFE-wielding man.
- The attacker from the March 2010 murders was executed one month later—just hours before a 33-year-old man injured 16 students and a teacher at a primary school in China—with a KNIFE.
- On April 29, 2010, 28 school children (mostly four-year-olds) were stabbed alongside two teachers and a security guard in China—with a KNIFE.
- The next day, a man committed suicide after using a HAMMER to attack preschool children in China.
There are probably many other similar incidents around the world, too. My point is that the guns are not the real problem—it’s the people; and if guns aren’t the real problem, then how can banning them be the real solution?. Sure, taking away guns would definitely stop mass shootings. There is no questioning that, but the problems I see with that “solution” are that:
- The second amendment to our constitution would have to be amended or repealed first (to allow it)—technically possible, but very hard. As a people, we would have to be much more united to make that happen, and our politicians make their living dividing us and pitting us against one another. We would have to unite in spite of them—which is also hard, because many are slaves to a political party or a predefined, cookie-cutter ideology and they don’t like to think for themselves.
- The availability of guns is not really the problem, as evidenced by the fact that guns have always been widely available in our country, but this mass-shooting thing is really pretty new. Something has changed in the people—in our collective psychology—and thus, the psychopaths have begun to reveal themselves in new and horrifying ways (most frequently with the guns that were already available).
- Even if guns were completely removed from the equation, then the angry, predatory psychopaths would probably turn to knives or hammers (as they apparently have in China), or explosives (as Timothy McVeigh did in OKC), or chainsaws (as depicted in several movies), or something else, and still we would have the exact same problem on our hands—because we didn’t choose to actually solve it at its root.
So I believe we need to address and solve the actual problem(s)—at the root(s). But, in typical fashion, our “brilliant” politicians will likely spend lots of our money, make a boat-load of self-aggrandizing speeches about the obvious and about so-called “sweeping changes” and “solutions,” and then do all the wrong things so that the problem is still not solved.
And while the politicians are busy making speeches for the television cameras; and taking polls, and doing demographic research, and rallying their bases; and banning “pistol grips” with great resolve, somewhere out there, the next killer is watching… and waiting… and planning…
How horrifying will the next one be?
“There are a thousand hacking at the branches of evil, for each one who is striking at the root.” — Henry David Thoreau