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Sunday, December 16, 2012

those people

SE PEOPLE

Some people won't like this. Oh well.

As the hours go on since the shooting of 20 babies, I find myself feeling ashamed.  I am ashamed of living in a country, of being part of a society where this has happened. It is the latest of a series of  mass shootings.  There is something very wrong with a country where this is starting to occur on a regular basis, now affecting babies. 

I am hearing the same thing that always happens: This guy was a nut, blah blah blah.  Nuts shouldn't have access to guns blah blah blah.  If we could have everybody who bought a gun be psychologically profiled this wouldn't happen blah blah blah.  When are we going to stop fooling ourselves? 

We live in a culture in which violence is acceptable.  It is celebrated in movies, on TV, in music.  Its entertainment. We think it is okay for our children to play video games in which they "pretend" to shoot people.  We have become immune to violence. We don't really care that there are 30 shootings a day in the country, 1,000 shooting a month, 100,000 shootings a year.  It doesn't affect us personally, so whatever. If affects "those" people. They aren't like "us". 
There are 300 million guns in a country with a population of 350 million. Why do we need all these guns? I hear the answers: for hunting, for self protection.  Guns are rarely used for self protection.  They are mostly kept in lock boxes.  I guess its the psychological idea that we have a gun in the house that makes us feel better.   It protects us from "those people" out there, the ones that would harm us if they could. 

Why are automatic weapons that are mostly designed to be used in war, available for purchase to the average person? Why can you buy as many bullets as you want?  Under what circumstances would you, personally, need to use an automatic weapon? 

We hold ourselves up as this great country, always bragging about how great we are.  Number one, etc.  Best in the world. Others should aspire to be like us. There is nothing great about a country in which 20 babies are killed and it is the third incidence of mass killings in the last 6 months.  Our culture is twisted. It is sick in so many different ways. If the killing of these babies does not cause a massive national examination of where we are headed, what we are about,  then    it is only a matter of time before this country ceases to exist.

20 comments:

~inês said...

Hello, I am portuguese, live in Lisbon. You are absolutely right. I admire USA so much, the spirit of the comunities and so on, but weapons? The entire world is in shock with you all. You don´t need weapons to be a great country with wonderfull people!!

~inês, Lisboa, Portugal.

girlvet said...

ines

I appreciate your thoughts.

Anonymous said...

I totally agree with your shock and pain, but have to add that the cause was not the weapon, but the very disturbed young man with his hand on the trigger. We as a country do not handle the problem of mental illness very well at all, and such a disturbed person could kill with a vast number of weapons.

My heart cries for these little ones, and the adults who tried to protect them at the cost of their own lives.

I am a nurse, but also a former Army officer, daughter of a Normandy landing WW II vet, and mother of a soldier. I completely believe that it is our mental health system, not our gun laws, that need re-vamping.

Prayers to all of the bereaved....

Pattie, RN

girlvet said...

Patti

You keep believing that bullshit.

girlvet said...

By the way, as a FORMER MILITARY OFFICER who has been in a war zone and seen what guns can do to people, cared for people who have been shot up, I KNOW what guns can do, so don't give me that bullshit.

Rantmaster Rich said...

I am so tired of the old worn out arguments. They all boil down to "We don't care how many children die, we won't give up our guns."

man'sinhumanity said...

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/15/world/asia/man-stabs-22-children-in-china.html?_r=0

Anonymous said...

This is nothing new. In the 1970's there was a school shooting by a young girl in California. Every time someone shoots a group of people, everyone is enraged for a few days, and talks about what can be done. Then they go back to their own lives and forget about it. Mental illness and gun restrictions need to be addressed.

R. May said...

man'sinhumanity - And tell me how many of those children died?

Guns make killing faster, easier and less personal.

Criminals wont' obey gun laws? Yup. And criminals aren't the ones walking into public places and shooting them up. Prior to that heinous violent act, they are all just people, like you and I.

~inês said...

A very disturbed person couldn´t have done such a thing without a gun. A very powerfull gun that was there for him to use, easy to buy. I understand that civilians are not at war in the USA, so why do they need to have so terrific guns at home? Why don´t they limit its use?
~inês

Ivan Ilyich said...

I think you are absolutely right in saying that it is not merely the general availability of guns, but the increasing level of violence in so much of our available entertainment.

Anonymous said...

Very well said, Girlvet.

Ally said...

My question is, what would you change? CT has pretty strict gun laws. Apparently the shooter tried to buy one prior to the shooting and couldn't due to a 14-day waiting period. The guns he used belonged to his mom, who bought them legally, and they were two handguns and a rifle used for varmint hunting (despite the media calling it a "military-style assault rifle"...its caliber isn't even used by hunters to kill deer, it's used to kill squirrels and the like). I get what you're saying about why would people need automatic assault weapons, but that's not what was used in this case. So what changes could realistically be made that would've prevented this shooting from happening?

I think there needs to be a specially trained, armed person in so-called gun free zones such as schools. Like a Federal Air Marshal...they put those guys on airplanes because all the passengers (except maybe possible terrorists) don't have weapons and on on the off chance a terrorist is on board the passengers will be helpless to stop him. So you put a good guy with a gun on board to defend everyone else. Why should things be any different in schools?

Ivan Ilyich said...

Ally is repeating the standard NRA line here. Gun nuts like to call this weapon a "varmint" gun as a way of justifying it, but it isn't necessary to have such a rifle for any "varmint" you are legitimately allowed to kill. While not a true "assault" weapon (which would be fully automatic), it is a derivative of a military rifle which is capable of rapid semi-automatic fire, which fires a high energy bullet, and which takes a large magazine. These are features optimized to kill multiples of large creatures (people) in a short time.

Legitimate hunters use bolt-action rifles, which take a second or two to reload and which typically are heavier than military-style rifles. These differences are crucial. Two or three people have a reasonable chance of overpowering a person armed with a bolt-action rifle when it would be very difficult to do so against a lightweight rapid-fire rifle.

As for the ammunition, it is much more than is required to kill a rat, suitable only for a "varmint" the size of a coyote or larger. I doubt the woman who owned this gun had a coyote problem, but if she did, a bolt-action .223 would have been a better choice of rifle.

And finally, with regard to Connecticut gun laws, the problem with the proliferation of military-style weapons obviously cannot be solved at the state level. This is a national problem.

girlvet said...

With calling for armed guards who will be volunteers, the NRA has proved what a bunch of nuts they really are.

Consider this fact: The US has 5$ of the worlds population and 50% of the guns in the world. This country is nuts.

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Anonymous said...

I really appreciate your. ummmm, thoughtful response to my earlier comment. It pains me that someone of your intelligence and wit goes to this sort of ad hominm attack, especially to a long time reader and supporter. "Keep believing that bullshit"....really, your finest response?? You are better than this.

If you hate guns, that is your right and opinion. I never suggested that automatic weapons be sold at Walmart, but please tell me why you think that weapons are the issue, instead of mentally ill people who are untreated and often undiagnosed? LBJ got rid of inpatient centers, but the community centers were never built or funded.....and I think I have a decade or two of memory of this on you.

Yes, my son is fifth generation military, and I am proud of this fact. He and his brother learned about firearms and safety at a young age, and our guns were under lock and key, especially during the teen years. When I am threatened by a preditor, four or two legged, I have no chance as a fifty-something chubby grandmother unless I am armed.

All the "gun-free zones" have produced is an area where fish in a barrel are readily available to the crazeee folks. And yes, I have seen what guns can do to humans....as well as knives, bombs, and blunt objects. I am very sad at your knee-jerk reaction, and would have said so earlier, but I was out of the country on a mission trip.

Can we please look at the cause, and not the method? It seems that you are confusing the two.

Pattie, RN (since 1979)

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

"Why are automatic weapons that are mostly designed to be used in war, available for purchase to the average person?"

They aren't really.

Automatic weapons are highly regulated, extremely expensive ($15,000+) and VERY difficult to acquire. You may only own a machine gun that was manufactured and registered with the BATF before May 19, 1986. Weapons manufactured after that date are restricted for Military and Law Enforcement use only. They're also extremely rare and have NEVER been used in any school shooting in America.

Just to acquire an "automatic weapon," you must go through extensive background checks and fingerprinting. You must apply to the federal government (ATF) for permission, then wait six months or longer to be "approved" by the ATF.

Seriously, look up the requirements for purchasing an automatic weapon under the National Firearms Act. This level of misinformation as in your blog post is not helpful.