The recent events in Newtown, Conn. have astounded, and then saddened, everyone in the world. It has caused all of us to ask ourselves "why?"... "Who would do such a thing?", and "What can be done about it?"
The shootings that have happened in the recent past and farther back all garner the same questions and stir up arguments and controversies.
I don't know what the answers are.
Those who are saying that controlling gun laws to prevent shootings are like saying drug laws won't keep drug dealers from dealing drugs; or that regulating marijuana laws will keep people from using it or selling it. It's saying you don't know how to deal with the problem but you don't want YOUR right to have a gun to be regulated.
I agree to some degree - it probably won't keep everyone from buying a gun. It won't keep the criminals who really want a gun and really want to kill from buying one. But, it will keep SOME people from getting guns. And with the current regulations, all of those people who are currently getting and using guns will still be able to get them.
In Europe, gun laws are stricter in some places, but that doesn't always solve the problem. In Norway, where policemen don't even wear guns in the streets, the recent shooting in Norway by mass murderer Anders Breivik was surprising, to say the least.
I don't know what needs to be done.
Instead of looking at the control, or non-control of guns, let's look at the motives behind the shootings. Are they more prevalent now than they were in the past? Have children or teen activities become different now than 25 or 50 years ago? I see the onset of violent video games, a more sedentary lifestyle and less activities that inspire the imagination to be the root causes.
One doesn't need statistics or numbers to tell them that when a child is exposed to hours and hours of violence and gun use, whether it's real or not, he or she will become inured to that violence. Parents who don't want their child to own or play with a toy gun, but will let them play a video game that encourages violence is asking for trouble down the line, when that child gets older.
What have these kids - from kindergarten on up to their 20s - been exposed to?
Is it any wonder that their answer to any kind of hurt or confusion is to massively turn on someone - anyone - with an assault rifle?
Mancos Times editor