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My Thoughts On The Gun Control Debate

listenI’ve waited more than a week to respond to the horrific events that occurred at Sandy Hook Elementary School. I’ve always tried to be one of those people who don’t immediately jump to conclusions and come running with pitch forks and torches.

Having said that, I must say that I am a bit disgusted by the rhetoric being used by those folks who DO like to use tragedies like this to advance their own personal (and political) agendas.

It seems like whenever there is a tragedy like this there are certain individuals from both sides of the political spectrum who go rushing to the first FOX, CNN or NBC camera they see to bloviate what the answer to the problem is.

In keeping with my motto of letting cooler heads prevail, I’ve decided to list a few things I believe are important to bring to the discussion. What follows is not my own solution but simply a point/counterpoint scenario where I also play a little “Devil’s Advocate” to some of the solutions already being recommended by others.

Tighten Gun Laws / Take Away The Guns

Pro:

  • Would make it much harder for people (especially ones who’d like to use them on innocent citizens) to obtain them.
  • No one needs a weapon that shoots that many rounds. How many times does a person have to die?

Con:

  • Second Amendment to the US Constitution: 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.

Devils’ Advocate:

  • But when the second amendment was written, the weapon of choice was a musket. We didn’t have AK-47’s, tanks and nuclear weapons that could destroy the world a hundred times over.

Upgrade security systems and/or put an armed teacher (or select group) at every school

Pro:

  • Would make any would be attacker think twice before entering a school.

Con:

  • Where is the money for this going to come from?
  • If a malcontent student can break into a locker or hack into a computer, what’s to say he can’t just break into a gun-room or teachers desk where a firearm is?

Devil’s Advocate:

  • A lot of the people who recommend this solution are ones who don’t care for public school teachers as is ( a whole other story).

More funding for mental health

Pros:

  • Would raise red flag on those troubled people who are predisposed to hurting others in such a manner.

Cons:

  • Again, how is this going to be paid for people who are unable to afford it?

What about taking a look at harsher penalties (and dare I open a new can of worms and say bring back the death penalty) for those convicted of such heinous acts? Would this discourage an attacker who might get cold feet at the thought of what awaited him? I don’t know. But deeper discussion on these and other issues is desperately needed.

This is a problem that goes much deeper than merely taking away everyone’s guns or adjusting college curriculum’s to include a semester of “How To Use A Firearm” for perspective teachers (neither of which would or should ever happen). Rather, this is going to take a collective group of rational adults, congressmen and a President to resolve responsibly. We owe as much to every law-abiding citizen, battered wife and defenseless child.

The real intent of this article isn’t to point fingers or say that only one side is correct. It merely emphasizes that the best thing for us all to do as human beings is to stop bitching and start listening.

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