Well, it’s been exactly two weeks since the senseless tragedy in Newtown, Connecticut. I said to myself as that day unfolded, I would not be a part of the problem anymore. Regardless of how small my voice may be, regardless of how much impact media has or has not on events such as this… I decided that day, no mas.
As a fellow human, you cannot grasp the horror those kids and teachers faced on that morning. As a father, I will not even allow myself to even attempt to fathom the emotion of the loss of a child, sitting innocently in a kindergarten class room, counting down the days to Christmas. My heart truly goes out to those families involved. Only a small percentage of us have to bury our own children and for these families to have to do it because of something like this, is truly unspeakable, so I won’t even waste my words to do so any longer.
As soon as this happened everyone (and rightfully so) are looking for answers. Its human nature, we are creatures so dependent on emotion. However, with human nature and emotion come mistakes. The media fans the flames with its inaccurate reporting, hyperbole and this desire to beat the other guy to the punch. It wasn’t even 15 minutes into the breaking news report, not even into the three minutes of rolling ads for boner pills, Forever Lazy’s & Pepsi commercials before we seen the graphics up.
Straddled across the screen like some stripper who is about to perform her 17th lap dance of the night (with 24 more to go) the slogan and graphic were dawned. “Tragedy in Newtown” – “Tragedy in Sandy Hook” - “Connecticut school massacre” etc etc etc. Hurricanes, school shootings, dead celebrities, Presidential speeches, court verdicts… yhea, we got a graphic for that.
Who can get there first? Who can take the best photos of the kids coming out, who can get the most exclusive interview with the person closest to the massacre? Get the Aunt of a dead teacher… or how about the step-mother of a child? A survivor?? Now, that is a real prize.
From media sensationalizing comes the blame game. Blame the guns (as if you need a link or a cite for this). Blame the games and the movies. Blame the mental health community or the lack thereof. Blame the devil. Blame Marylin Manson. Oh, wait I’m getting ahead of myself. Nobody listens to Manson’ anymore… gonna have to find a new whipping boy in music I suppose. Can we use Eminem? Even the conspirators have officially claimed the attack never happened. In fact “them” are said to be all in bed together to take over the world and all of the “dead” must be living happily ever after at the north pole. Lots of blame – but no solutions.
The truth of the matter will not require a retro fit band-aide that we as Americans like to use for everything. The wound is much larger than that but yet so small at the same time. That’s because the wound is us. We as a people are the problem. Individual responsibility is the best cure for any problem we might encounter from mounting fiscal national debt to education failures in our schools to school shootings.
Individual responsibility is hard in this case because we depend on the schools to keep our children safe. And unless your child just so happens to be attending the one school of a sitting Presidents children, no school is safe from this type of act, as it is, right now.
But do we have to settle for how things are right now? Or should we demand more? Buzzing people in and out of locked schools is a nice idea, but all someone has to do is smash the doors or windows to gain access to hundreds if not thousands of unarmed innocent people. That’s how these turn into bloody massacres. If we can’t turn back the hands of time and (un) invent the gun, the only solution is to fight fire with fire. And do it in every school in America. It’s done in many inner cities already and it’s obviously done for the President. If it’s good for the goose, it’s good for the gander.
This however isn’t the topic for those in mass media; instead their focus seems to be centered on the weapons and motives of past killers instead of focusing on protecting future victims. Making guns illegal in any way shape or form will not keep guns out of criminal’s hands. Don’t believe me? Tell me…. how’s that “war” on drugs working out for you? A law or ban or restriction only creates a bigger black market and thus only supports more crime and senseless deaths. This is simply supply and demand. Yet all we hear is #guncontrolnow. Puzzling, it is, the inability for so many to not grasp simplistic approaches like cause and effect.
Switzerland has some of the highest gun ownership in the world with 45.7 guns per 100 residents yet their gun related crimes are so low they don’t even keep records according to a piece written in the BBC last year. And many of these guns are fully automatic military grade rifles (M-57 Assault rifle pictured below). Those type of weapons are already ILLEGAL here and were not used in this case… yet we have a gun problem, and the Swiss do not?
Again, restricting certain guns or outlawing guns all together even will not stop senseless gun violence or school shootings. Only a gun can stop a gun. Kids in a school are locked up sitting ducks, thus security in the form of a regular beat cop should be in place at every school in the country. We put a man on the moon, invented the automobile, invented the computer… yet we cannot protect our children while at school getting their shitty education? And for those of you who say: “what are we supposed to do, put cops in the mall as well”?
The answer is simply, no. Because if we focus on individual responsibility (including but not limited to) on things like more concealed weapons permits for those that qualify; the coverage and overlap would police itself. If you put a gun in every school office in the country it would save more lives than it would ever take by just their presence alone. Not to mention, probably foil many attacks from happening in the first place. As time goes on, we are seeing battle lines drawn between people who want choice and freedom while others want to be directed and told what to think, what to believe and when to do it. Lets not let the second amendment be another victim when in reality its the only solution. We have too many Indians, we need more chiefs.