Aftermath

It is less than a week after the shooting in Aurora, Colorado; the first victims are being buried, some wounded are leaving hospitals and gun sales are up over 40% since the murders. It seems, since this was such a high profile shooting, some people feel this will cause the Obama administration and other politicians go after their guns and since time maybe running out on their free access to weapons of mass destruction they are buying as many guns as they can. The same thing happened after Representative Gabby Giffords was shot in January of 2011.

I suspect some out there probable agree with Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) who reportedly said that the tragedy was a result of “ongoing attacks on Judeo-Christian beliefs” and questioned why nobody else in the theater had a gun to take down the shooter in a state where concealed gun carry is allowed.

Can you imagine the carnage if someone watching the movie in Aurora started a fire fight in that smoke-filled darkened theater? I am sure some of those buying up all those guns believe they will stop the next mass murderer if the occasion should happen.

There are 4.5 million small arms sold in the USA every year. There are an estimated 875 million known guns in the world and 270 million are in America. There are 90 guns for every 100 people in America. This is the problem in a nutshell: there are just too many guns in the USA and they are obtained way too easily.

Being armed to the teeth is not the answer in a civilized society. Like many issues facing Americans in the 21 century, Americans will have to decide what type of country they want to live in. The NRA has used fear and misinformation about gun control and the safety of Americans to boost their power and institutional wealth.

In 1959, even before the assassination of President JFK, 60% of Americans wanted handguns banned outright for all but police officers.

Mayor Bloomberg of New York City stated that gun violence in rural areas has now matched gun violence in the inner city. The gun problem in the USA is now a nationwide problem and mayors all over America are dealing with this life and death problem with diminished police and emergency service position because of budget cuts at both the federal and state level. The city of Aurora was about to vote on whether or not to layoff both police and EMT service positions. Having fewer police and other first responders on the street, with more and more guns in those same towns and cities, is a disaster waiting to happen — and last Friday was proof of that.

There are common sense gun control regulations that will not infringe on any ones 2nd Amendment rights.

  • First, shut down internet sites that sell guns and ammunition online with little or no background checks.
  • Second, all gun sales must go through a licensed gun dealer — and the unregulated sale and purchase of guns at trade shows by individuals should be halted.
  • Third, waiting periods must be in any common sense plans to limit the number of guns on the streets of America.
  • Fourth, limit the number of guns that can be purchased within a period of time.
  • And, finally, identify every gun owner and the guns he owns.

This subject is not new. Each time the country goes through a Columbine, Virginia Tech or Aurora, some people begin to wake up and see that more guns are not the right answer. Yesterday, President Obama stated:

“I also believe that a lot of gun owners would agree that AK-47s belong in the hands of soldiers, not in the hands of criminals. That they belong on the battlefield of war, not on the streets of our cities. I believe the majority of gun owners would agree we should do everything possible to prevent criminals and fugitives from purchasing weapons, and we should check someone’s criminal record before they can check out a gun seller.”

It will take more than Mayor Bloomberg and President Obama’s words to stop the flow and accesses to these weapons of mass destruction; it will take other politicians of all persuasions to find their backbones and stand up to the NRA and its money.