Yesterday Senator Diane Feinstein (D-CA) opened a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on Senate Bill 150, or “how I learned to stop living rationally and hate the semi-automatic firearm,” also known as “assault weapons ban of 2013.” Seven months have passed since the shooting in an Aurora, CO movie theater. Two months have passed since the shooting in an elementary school in Newtown, CT. The debate has heated up in these last two months. The politicians are making their cases for and against stricter gun control laws. Those arguing for stricter laws think that controlling an object that can be used as an implement of destruction will change the destructive tendencies of some people. The opponent view is that this is not the case, and in fact, by increasing control over what weapons law abiding citizens can have will do nothing but limit access to guns for responsible non-criminals and do nothing to stop guns from getting into the hands of those who would use them to commit murder.
We can’t get away from the propaganda. Both sides of this issue are spewing it forth. In my opinion the bottom line is that guns are property, Congress shouldn’t interfere with the pursuit of property and as a general rule guns are protected under the 2nd Amendment to the Constitution. Sure, the whole militia argument can take place, but then give us a definition of a militia. I will be happy to gather with a group of friends once a month, wear t-shirts with our militia name on them and train in firearm safety and marksmanship. I don’t agree with the gun control/gun ban side of the argument. I don’t think we’ll see a change in murderous behavior simply because certain guns are illegal. Murder is old school. It can be dressed in modern garb like “mass shooting” and “drone strike” but killing that isn’t done in defense of family or self and only in the last resort, is murder. That’s how I see it. I support the U.S. Military, but I wish the people in command would choose better ways to call our soldiers, Marines, sailors and airmen to action. But that’s another issue.
I see a lot of propaganda in the current gun ban initiative. The use of the Newtown shooting borders on exploitation. Twenty children were killed and now their pictures are organized on large posters that sit behind politicians as they push their agenda on the country. I don’t know if that agenda is simply a hatred of guns, a total distrust of the American people to take care of themselves or some conspiracy fueled possibility that there is a faction in the government intent on creating a total control government over this land. Whatever the agenda, the victims in Newtown are being paraded and used as propaganda. The killing of children isn’t worse than the killing of adults. The killing of any person who isn’t actively trying to kill you is awful.
Vice President Joe Biden is trying to convince people that AR-15 style rifles are not easier to use than a 12 gauge shotgun. I disagree. I was in the Army and therefore have been professionally trained on the M-16 rifle. [The difference between the M-16 and the AR-15 is selective fire, meaning that the M-16 can fire more than one bullet with every trigger pull in a specific setting, and the AR-15 can only fire one bullet per trigger pull while simultaneously loading the next round, what is known as semi-automatic.] The M-16/Ar-15 rifle system is very easy to use. It is a relatively small caliber and is built to absorb the recoil from firing a round. I’ve also fired a 12 gauge shotgun. Those hurt and are much more difficult to shoot because of the anticipation of it kicking into your shoulder. At least for me, and I’m 5’10”, 175 lbs. I can still hit what I’m aiming at, but I could get a second shot on target faster with the AR-15. I’ve never been bruised by a .223 caliber rifel, but I have been bruised by a 12 gauge shotgun. Someone has submitted a video to YouTube contradicting VP Biden:
All of this is just opinion and preference, however, taking attention away from the underlying problems. The idea that dangerous things must be outlawed because a small portion of the population, I mean really small, decides to use those things to harm others is irrational. The only way these gun laws will work is if they eventually include taking all guns away and never creating new ones. This won’t happen because police and military personnel need them. So there will always be guns somewhere in the country, and if there are guns there will be people to steal them and use them to kill. But even if it were possible to eliminate all guns it still wouldn’t serve the purpose of reducing violent crime. War and murder existed for a long time before guns were created. Guns just make it easier in some cases.
Intent usually precedes an act. I’d say always but there are accidental actions and so forth so I’ll leave it at usually. I think in the case of these public shootings we see that intent did precede the act. The shooters didn’t find themselves in public with guns and then just started shooting, not to realize what they were doing until after the fact, no, they intended to do what they did. This is the target issue: intent. The question we need to answer is how and why these people develop the intent to kill. Not how as in what method they use to carry out their plan, but how could they even come up with the plan in the first place. We need to discuss what is going on in homes and school and church and wherever kids gather and address the issues that are leading to violence and destructive behavior.
For now we have the gun control debate. However you may feel about the topic, call your State representatives for congress and let them know. If we don’t tell our representatives how we feel about an issue then they will follow their party or the biggest lobby or their personal preference. If we want to maintain our government of the people then the people need to be involved. We all need to tell our representatives how to represent us. If we don’t then they won’t be able to do their job correctly. To find e-mail addresses or the number for the Capitol switchboard, click here.
What do you think? Will tighter laws concerning gun ownership lead to a safer America?