July 22, 2012

Updated: The Second Amendment: 27 simple words

I originally posted this back in July, at the time of the movie theater shooting in Aurora Colorado.  Since then, we can add the temple in Wisconsin, and the shopping mall in Oregon, and the most horrific of all, Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown Colorado, where twenty children died, along with several adults. 
Some now say the answer is to have guns in schools; others say we need God in schools.  Some say the answer is to take all guns away, some say it's to arm everyone.
Will we ever come to terms on this? 
Another horrible gun tragedy in America, and another heated debate will kick up about whether we need more gun control in the US.

We've been talking about this for years.  We talk and talk and talk. People chime in from the left and from the right; from the NRA and the Brady Center and everywhere in between. Money flows fast and furious from both sides, to both side. The Supreme Court has chimed in.

We all chime in.

Everyone chimed in when Gabby Giffords was shot a year ago, and when the Virginia Tech shootings happened, and when the Fort Hood shootings happened, and when the Binghamton shootings happened, and the Columbine shootings happened, and lots of other times. 

MotherJones.com put together a map of dozens of cases since the 1980s that are considered 'mass murders' (at least four victims, generally a lone gunman  public place).  I counted over 300 people murdered, with the number of injured much higher.

Movie theaters. Restaurants. Army bases. Universities. Cultural Centers. High Schools. Shopping malls. Sadly, if we build it, people will be murdered there.  We even came up with the slang term 'going postal' after several incidents in 1986, 1991, 1993, and 2006 involving US Postal Service workers. 

I've heard the argument that guns don't kill people, people kill people, and of course I get that a person pulls the trigger. I've heard the argument that if we ban or restrict guns, we have to ban or restrict silverware, and rope, and cars, and everything else that could be used to kill someone. I've heard it from friends, and from family members, and from total strangers.

But here's what I don't get: did the Founding Fathers really intend that a person should be able to legally purchase thousands of rounds of ammunition and an assault rifle?  

27 simple words:
A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.