Tuesday, December 18, 2012
I would like to start this post off by saying that it is not about the tragedy in Connecticut. This is in no way aimed at that or making a statement about that. It is, however, in response to the mass flooding of anti-gun law support I've seen on social networking sites. I wish people would stop using tragedies to use them as platforms to voice their opinions or make the event about an issue. The shooting at that school - at any school, for that matter - did not happen because the shooter was against guns so don't make this a gun issue. This is a human issue.
Guns can be good things, just as they can be bad.
Okay, let's start here. People have used axes to chop down trees to build homes, wagons, roads, or to heat their homes. Axes have also been used to kill people. Same with chain saws. Other utensils we use daily that are vital to our every day lives are in the same boat. Cars? Yep. Knives? Yep. Hammers? Yep. Bath tubs and their water? Yep. Electricity? Yep. Food? Yep. Household cleaners? Yep. Fertilizer? Yep. Gasoline? Yep. Swimming pools? Yep. Peanuts? Yep. Shrimp? Yep. Fish? Yep. Chocolate? YEP.
My point is, nearly anything can be used to kill people - if we're looking at it this way. Things that we use every day that are harmless when used the proper way can be turned in a negative light and used to kill someone. I don't see laws against using or owning knives, cars, or bottles of Clorox. Know why? Because majority of people use these things the CORRECT way. And these things don't kill people on their own. When they kill people, it is because SOMEONE misused them and did bad things with them.
Aren't guns the same?
While you could argue their vitality to life, they, as long as used properly, are harmless. If the owner has common sense and doesn't keep the gun lying around the house loaded or the safeties off, no child is going to accidentally set it off. The owner isn't going to accidentally shoot someone of his or herself if they know what they're doing. It is when someone comes along and misuses the object that guns become a problem.
Guns can be used for hunting and providing food that you eat daily. Not only on a local scale, but corporately. How do you think they kill cows before they're butchered? Guns. It's morbid, but it's true. Guns are used to protect you. Cops use them all the time and I don't see anyone complaining about law enforcement using them to protect you law-abiding citizens (who are doing absolutely nothing wrong) from being attacked on a daily basis. And I DEFINITELY do not see anyone complaining about our military men and women having guns and other weapons to protect our country and themselves.
So why is it such an issue if citizens have guns? Police officers are just normal citizens in uniform with some extra training that other people don't necessarily have and so are military personnel.
Wanting to pass laws against guns will accomplish nothing. The people that do this kind of stuff are not law abiding citizens. What on earth makes someone think that they'll see a gun law or a gun-free zone and think "Oh, right. Darn. Can't bring that here." if they couldn't care less about breaking laws?
I do understand the point that if guns were not allowed, people would be less likely to use them improperly. But I want to bring up a similar circumstance. Prohibition. When alcohol was banned in the United States of America.
Prohibition originated when a group of Christian women decided that if alcohol wasn't consumed by men, women and children would not be abused. They gained so much support that eventually, prohibition became law. This, like doing away with guns, appeared to be a noble cause. It'd make people safer, healthier, etc. But only when taken at surface level. It's a fine idea, in theory.
But as a result of Prohibition, an underground market of bootleggers came about. Organized crime grew ridiculously. People got hurt because of it. Because it was suddenly a crime to have and/or consume alcohol, people got hurt keeping it a secret. But the main point?
People. Still. Got. It.
Making ownership of guns illegal is not going to take guns off the streets anymore than making drugs or prostitutes illegal has kept them off the street. People will always find a way to get what they want. Period. And making them illegal will only cause more problems. Black markets are sure to arise and crime rates will sky-rocket. It's worth noting that in countries without gun laws, crime rates are way lower than they are here.
People are more likely to go against something if they're told that they cannot do something.
But this isn't a gun issue. This is a human issue. There are, unfortunately, always going to be broken, messed up people in this world. It's a sad reality. But what I fail to understand is how in light of recent events, people are wanting to disarm our citizens completely. I don't know about you, but if I was in a position where my life, my co-workers'/family members' lives, or children's lives were in danger I would not want to be left defenseless and hoping that law enforcement would show up in time.
Having citizens who carry is a good thing. Less people will get hurt if A) an intruder or criminal knows that certain groups of people (i.e. school faculty members) carry guns and B) if there are armed citizens who can defend themselves and the people around them and take down the gunman before the police arrive.
To me? That's worth it. Saving lives is worth allowing Americans to exercise their 2nd Amendment rights. If you don't like guns, don't carry one. But don't take that right from others. Who knows, one of those concealed carry certified citizens might just save your life.
And on a smaller scale, as a woman I would like to have some sort of defense against a male attacker. You can argue all you want that women can be just as strong as men, but, honey, I'm 4ft 10.5in. I'm not going to be able to take down a man on my own. Especially if he's attacking me. Either having a gun of my own or having a passerby having one could save me (my life, among other things).
Guns can provide safety and security. Sometimes you don't have time to call the police. And if you do, it could take awhile for them to get there - more time than you have if someone is breaking into your house.
I don't think that anyone could look me in the eye and tell me that they would prefer to be defenseless if their family was in danger. I know that I wouldn't want that. I'd do everything in my power to save as many people as I could. I think allowing citizens to carry guns (after proper training) is a good place to start.
But, as always, that's just my two cents.
Comments? Leave 'em below. Just be nice. I won't attack you or your opinions, so don't attack me or mine.
p.s. Just a side note. Can we please stop releasing the names and photographs of killers? They do not deserve the media attention and "fame." Let's focus on the victims and those left behind. I refuse to give a murderer any of my time or attention - he or she does not deserve it. The innocent people deprived of the chance to live. . . those are the people I will focus on. Their stories, their faces, their names, their memory. Not that of the one who took that from them.