‘The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.’ ~Edmund Burke
Another senseless massacre of innocent children, again at a school, this time in Connecticut. When is enough enough?
I have been reading the blogs and articles from those who send their prayers and condolences and those thoughts are much-needed by the community of Newtown at this tragic time. But prayers won’t change laws, but activism can.
We can react by turning our schools into fortresses and arm the teachers, as some propose, or we can get real and come together as a nation to pass sensible gun control laws. It’s choice time people, unless we want to wait until it’s one of our own children, and by then it’s definitely too late.
Current gun laws are too lax and we can’t wait for the politicians to muster up their courage, or create watered-down compromises. It’s time the majority made their voice known loud enough to drown out the special interest lobby groups and their piles of PAC money. Otherwise we will continue to have the tyranny of the few and the pain of the many.
Let me be clear. I firmly believe in the right of responsible citizens to bear arms for hunting and self-defense, but being able to purchase Uzis, M-1 military rifles, AK-47s, Glocks and other weapons only designed for war and killing other people is, to me, stretching our rights and responsibilities too far. Growing up I hunted quail, doves, pheasant, goose with shotguns and as an adult belonged to a gun club where we shot clay targets. But the thought of owning, or even wanting, an arsenal of military weapons at home never even crossed our minds. And I am certain the majority in the country agree.
And gun ownership is currently all too easy. Today extremely dangerous weapons are available over the counter, from street gangs, and even over the internet. And the consequences are catastrophic when disturbed teens and irresponsible adults acquire guns and kill innocent people in schools and movie theatres. This is no longer a public right, but a public problem. And the public must act. We need more sensible gun control laws.
On the other hand, I also know there are people in the world who hate and wish to inflict harm on others. Learning to protect one’s self, through martial arts training, boxing training, and learning to shoot a gun are some of the life skills I believe are important to possess, and hopefully never need to use.
Some people believe that the solution is to arm themselves to the hilt. But I see another option. A good community, working together with community officials, is a much better way to protect our freedoms from burglars and others who mean to do harm, than hiding behind barred windows with an arsenal of heavy weapons. With more community involvement and saner gun control laws, we can turn the tide on this deadly epidemic.
Our Choice: Either change it or ignore it! Both have consequences.
John R Childress