Reader disputes Mike’s figures – ‘gun control needed’
To the Editor
Mike! I was amazed at your not so amusing musings that gun control won’t solve crime. Your rather simplistic rant ignored some rather basic truths. In the first place your statistic on English crime rates more than doubling, failed to indicate what the actual rise amounted to and more importantly how much of the rise was connected in some way to violent death by gunfire; causing even one inexcusable death of school children or an adult in a situation similar to that at New Town. I am certain that you will agree that you misinformed by omission in that statement. I am also certain that you do have some of the factually correct information on the subject so I won’t bore you with that here. I do believe that your wacko statement that “Obama and the federal government should be putting their collective IQ’s together to solve mental illness” is the scariest part of that article. It might just be that you should study up on German initiatives prior to and during WWII. They sure thought they had the solution to mental illness and a number of other problems that resulted in certain citizens being judged less than desirable. It is also worthy of note here that, in fact, the Constitution guarantees the right of the mentally ill to own and bear arms just like the rest of us. As they too are individuals and this position has been supported by the federal court system.
As for Darrell Scott. I can’t argue with some of his basic premise. I can state that the proliferation and availability of guns and ammunition make it extremely easy for any individual, wacko, mentally deranged or not, to obtain guns and use them improperly. The next question that comes to mind is your definition of ‘wacko’ and how it relates to those found to be mentally ill. This brings us to the question of gun ownership of recently returned service men. As you may be aware a large number of these valiant men and women suffer from PTSD. Should they, due to the potential future problem of post traumatic stress syndrome, be denied the right to own arms? Suicides and violent death in the military has shown a significant rise of late, probably due to PTSD or other stress related illness. The “collective IQ’s” you mentioned earlier might decide that it is in our best interest to no longer have a standing army or army of any type and thereby make real inroads on the treatment of mental illness. That of course would lead to the extended ownership of guns because the need of a militia mentioned in the Constitution would become an immediate reality!
As the discussion continues it becomes obvious there is no easy solution. As you stated you “don’t want some federal agency” telling you what to do. At the same time I am certain you will scream bloody murder when some terrorist walks into a bus or train station and opens fire with the guns you support and kills and maims. He probably would however fall under your selective wacko definition and “the government IQ’s should have done something about HIM”.
I would propose that we consider what the Constitution framers were dealing with when they developed the Second Amendment, so vigorously supported by the “cold dead hands” people of the NRA. They might have been looking forward to a time when this country would take this land from the indigenous peoples, they foresaw doing it with single shot, cap and ball rifles. No assault rifles capable of firing 100’s of rounds per minute. Just one shot every 30 seconds or so. So why can’t we protect that inalienable right? Give anyone who wants one what the Constitution supported when it was written. Nothing more
nothing less and at the end of the distribution let’s ask the remaining indigenous people how fair and equitable they saw that action and then let’s ask THEM who the “wackos” might have been in another time.
To conclude: I own a gun! I shoot a gun! I don’t support those ‘Wacko” NRA people! More importantly I DO NOT believe that I should be allowed to own an assault rifle capable of killing hundreds of people in a “New York” minute! Due entirely to the fact that at some point in my life I might be judged a “wacko” and I would not want you to feel compelled to rise to my defense…The freedom of speech is a glorious right!