Over the past five years I've made it a policy to hold my tongue on highly publicized firearm tragedies in the U.S. until after seeing which direction the President has taken his remarks. In the recent UCC Oregon shooting, as well as most other shootings in the U.S. lately, it seems, sadly, to be taking an increasingly shortened time for the President as well as other politicians and anti-gun individuals to again turn lives lost in a highly emotional shooting tragedy into a political issue. Further, this President has failed to mention that the shooter targeted a group he arguably has shown little respect for – Christians. The irony is that he's quick to call to the nation's attention when a Muslim, for example, is the target of violence by quickly calling it a hate crime. Yet there is no mention that Christians were singled out in the recent UCC Oregon shooting, raising the obvious question – why not? I'm not suggesting that everything should be called a hate crime, just that clear consistency would be nice.
Between the President, other politicians and anti-gun individuals among us we will again be hearing about "common sense gun laws" yet never hearing specifically which new laws will magically make criminals stand up and take note of any laws at all. We again hear that other countries don't have mass shooting problems like the U.S. (a blatant lie). And we hear that the solution to gun crime is to add even more restrictions on law-abiding gun owners.
This call for more restrictive gun control laws is akin to forcing the "weapon free zones" (as was again the case in the most recent shooting) to hang even larger signs stating no weapons are allowed. The apparent hope behind such notification is that if criminals know guns aren't allowed, they'll likely walk past a "gun free" zone in favor of opening fire where they know they'll receive return fire. Clearly one can see the shear ludicrousness of that proposition, but for some reason there continues to be a call for more laws that criminals will never adhere to, just as they pay no attention to "no weapons" signs.
Automatic weapons such as militry rifles have been illegal for the public to own for many decades now without stringent licensing requiremnts. Yet, politicians will again be portraying guns that shoot one bullet per trigger pull as automatic weapons with their strategic choice of words. They will call the weapons "military weapons" (completely false - and, no military person would choose a civilan rifle over their military issue, just ask) and they'll talk about how the shooter can pull the trigger and "just mow people down." Michael Bloombeg and others are notorious for this type of rhetoric, convincing the uninformed public that sporting rifles are somehow similar to military weapons when, if one has any clue about guns, it is easy to see they are not. The uninformed public then goes spewing similar emotional language by saying we don't need guns that "spray bullets" and some make the comparison to grenades and bombs and even weapons of mass destruction as if this has anything to do with sporting rifles. Our current Vice President has even stated that a couple good ideas are to shoot people through your door and to fire bullets into the air in your back yard - two actions that are illegal and could land you in jail. People who have never shot a gun or don't know that the first rule of gun safety is to "know your target and beyond" should not be telling others anything at all about guns. Still, these are the people the uniformed public chooses to listen to.
But shooting shouldn't be about any politicians or the dangerous and inappropriate spread of misinformation by the uninformed. The attention before, during and after such tragedies should focus on prevention and at the same time call for meaningful solutions to prevent future, similar situations instead of blindly following calls for "action" that do nothing.
One solution is simple, and you will hear about this nowhere else. We need to start filing class action lawsuits against the entities that fail to protect the children and young adults. When tragedies such as the UCC shooting or Sandy Hook or Columbine or Virginia Tech take place, the victim's parents should sue the school for not protecting their children. If required fire safety equipment such as alarms and sprinklers were not working properly and if injury or death were to occur due to this neglect, certainly the school would suffer enormous lawsuits. Even more crazy is the degree of safety now taken with the new playground equipment. Plastic caps over exposed fasteners and plastic rounded edges are now requied merely for the elimination of cuts and scrapes to the students. Yet, when these entities knowingly and erroneously provide no security or defense whatsoever against willful horrendous shootings, then act as if a "no weapons" sign posted at the school entrance provides a fairy tale force field of protection around the students, the schools are blindly exonerated of all neglect.
The term "common sense gun laws" is used for one reason...no sane person can look another in the eye and say they aren't for "common sense" anything. This term was created in a marketing department and it's absolutely brilliant because it forces everyone to either agree, or look like a lunitic. But we never hear what these "common sense gun laws" really are. Why? Because those pushing such vague generalities generally know nothing about guns. They're afraid to talk too much about guns because it will show their ignorance, and they know the laws they propose have only a feel-good effect, much like "gun free zone" signs, and provide no increased safety for the citizens of the country.
For those who still think criminals are going to follow laws, and the next time you catch yourself agreeing to vague unattainable "solutions" based on how you feel or what you "hope" for, I ask you to consider specifically (not emotionally) WHICH new laws will, if passed, keep criminals from these horrendous acts? Force your politician to name just one and have them explain how that law would have prevented any of the past tragedies. Additionally, since criminals are cowards by nature, preying on the weak and unarmed, and almost always giving up or taking their own life when confronted by an armed individual, how do we justify the elimination of firearms from responsible gun owners as a proposed method to make students safer? Now ask yourself where the majority of these acts take place. The answer to that question leads to the self-evident question; how have the "gun free zones" worked so far?
For those who blame the NRA for the problem with the tired argument that they have so much lobbying influence with their "deep" pockets, the truth is that individual anti gun advocates like Bloomberg and Soros could easily carry around the total NRA annual budget as pocket change. There is way more money on the anti gun side than there is on the pro gun side and the reason the pro gun advocates have been able to prevent ludicrous restrictive laws from being passed is not because of "NRA money"...it's because, unlike what you hear in the media, the majority of citizens are NOT for more strict gun laws. The "most Americans support tighter gun control laws" is also developed in a marketing department. It's meant to sway the sheeple into believing that they are an outcast if they don't support more gun control.
One of the current methods of protection offered by schools during active shooter situations is to hide in a corner until the good guys with guns show up. Another is to run, and another is to pray. That might be 10, 12, or 15 minutes from when the shooting starts. A mere second seems like an eternity to those suffering this unimaginable situation...probably more so at the point the victims realize that the "gun free" zone they are in is actually what has made them more vulnerable to said attacks. Yet, the proposed "solution" is always a regurgitation of the same easily digestible non-solution that put the victims in these positions in the first place...and for some reason, a certain segment of the population continues to believe it.
Why do we needlessly subject our children and young adults to such sheer terror while a deranged killer goes about his business unencumbered for such long periods of time? Why do we allow students to be so vulnerable and make them wait so long for help when it's possible and practical and also the responsible thing to give them the protection they need in just a few short seconds after the shooting begins? Why?!