I am so horrified, as is the rest of the United States, with the latest terrorist attack in San Bernardino. The pain and suffering and grief that the victims’ families and friends are going through are unimaginable. I have been sending many thoughts of love and support to them since I first heard about this atrocious tragedy.
With each new attack that seem to be escalating more and more in the past few years, everyone asks the same question over and over. How can we stop these attacks?
From newscasters, journalists, politicians, Facebook followers, bloggers on many sites and from ordinary people all over the United States, there have been many different opinions on where do we go as a nation from this latest attack? How can we prevent these tragedies?
So please allow me to add my two-cents.
First of all, we have to stop the bullying and the brow-beating from the NRA (the National Rifle Association), most especially from its executive vice-president, Wayne LaPierre.
The NRA has proven time and time again how inflexible and illogical their principles are regarding any kind of gun controls. They have perverted the meaning of the Second Amendment and have consequently twisted the thinking of too many politicians and judges into believing their perverted interpretation of that amendment.
By no stretch of the imagination does the Second Amendment mean individual gun owners. Militia is plural, in every dictionary and encyclopedia and in every traditional usage, and the term militia does not, and has never, referred to an individual. The right of the people to keep and bear arms is also plural. The term people in the context of the Second Amendment is also plural, and also does not refer to any individual.
And I disagree completely with the Supreme Court’s ruling in the case of District of Columbia v. Heller in 2008 that decreed, 217 years after that Amendment was ratified, that the Second Amendment applied to individuals. I am positive that the five Republican-allied judges who voted for that law put their own political agendas on the table.
And look what has been happening to our nation since then! Well done, Supreme Court, well done! We are so less safer now.
However, as the Supreme Court has made that erroneous decision and that is now the definition of the Second Amendment, there still has to be common sense about where to go from there.
Having the individual right to bear arms now does not mean that EVERY weapon should be made freely available to all. Would any sane and logical person believe that an individual should have a nuclear bomb? Or a rocket launcher? Where exactly does the NRA draw their line?
Congress needs to get their heads out of their asses and pass sensible, logical, common sense laws that regulates the purchasing of any kind of gun, pistol, rifle, shotgun, assault weapons, etc., so that the most radical Americans, as well as the NRA, can finally begin to loosen their insane obsession with guns and weapons.
No individual’s claims to a right should impose on the greater safety and welfare of the people.
I do not want to limit the millions of hunters in our country but they do know, whether they will admit it or not, that no one hunts with automatic weapons. Those types of weapons are meant to do one thing and one thing only: kill as many people as possible in a quick and rapid manner.
Since when do hunters mow down dozens of deer or moose or elk? They can’t because every state has limits on the number of animal kills each hunter can make. So how is outlawing the owning and using of such weapons an imposition?
And why does the NRA and its members automatically scream in fury that if one weapon is limited or banned, that that means that ALL weapons will be regulated? That all or nothing attitude is idiotic.
That is the bullying and brow-beating and illogical thinking that they do with their inflammatory rhetoric. And then they use their political donations to unduly influence Congress and state legislatures as well as use their threats of political retaliation of anybody who doesn’t kowtow to them. That is why it is so important to break their disastrous clout.
Hunters in America for over 200 years have been able to hunt game with rifles and shotguns. Outlawing automatic weapons and their ammunition would not in any way interfere with their hunting.
The inflammatory and illogical reasoning of the NRA and many Republicans is HOW they think people have the right to protect themselves should go about trying to do that.
True, we all have a right to protect ourselves. However, there have been too many studies that have shown that people who keep guns in their homes, cars or on themselves are more than likely to have those guns used, NOT in defense of themselves or their families and homes, but in accidental gun deaths and injuries.
We are the only country that has such a proliferation of weapons in the general population. Most other countries have very strict gun control laws and their crime statistics are nowhere near as high as ours.
The NRA’s contentions that having more people armed and locked and loaded will help those people protect themselves is as ludicrous as a person saying that they will eat and eat and eat to keep from getting fat.
The vast majority of Americans have never had a crime inflicted on themselves, have not had their homes broken into, and have never had somebody else point a weapon at them. So where is the logic behind the NRA’s illogical blusterings?
If we took the NRA’s asinine desires to the maximum level and had everybody in the United States over the age of 18 packing heat, what would we end up with? A nation-wide, never-ending version of the OK Corral. Oh yeah, that scenario really makes me feel oh so much safer!
A complete ban on automatic weapons and their ammunition, making on-line gun and ammunition sales illegal and outlawing all sales from gun shows are logical and would go a long way toward making the United States much safer for all.
It would also help break the obscene obsession of the few radical Americans since the NRA began to push its inflammatory rhetoric in the 1960’s.
If a rifle, shotgun or a pistol and their ammunition needs to be purchased, then have the purchase be made in person in a licensed and inspected gun shop after a reasonable waiting period for verification of the pending purchaser’s background check and mental health check.
I cannot fathom how that waiting period or a requirement that weapons and ammunition be made in person can be construed as “too restrictive.” Why would any law-abiding citizen ever need a gun RIGHT NOW?
If you are a hunter who is afraid that he/she will miss out on that year’s hunting season because they did not plan ahead, then tough shit, get yourself better organized.
We also need to tighten up and/or create much better laws that regulate lobbyists in general to reduce their influence on our legislatures on city, state and national levels.
Congress also needs to somehow collectively find a way to pass laws that tighten up election campaign donations to do an end-run against that disastrous Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission ruling by the Supreme Court in 2010.They have to better consider the greater good of all the American people over their own individual situations.
It is ludicrous that corporations, labor unions, the NRA and other non-profit groups are allowed such broad campaign donations definitions.
Our political races since that horrendous Supreme Court decision have been unduly influenced by just a few people. Our elected officials and elected judges are now being bought and sold to the highest bidder.
And the NRA’s immense money influences in local, state and national elections is the perfect example of why tighter campaign donation laws need to be passed.
I have firmly believed since the 1980’s that there is a much better way to fund campaign races at the local, state and national levels.
I think that all campaigns on all levels should be funded by the taxpayers into highly regulated funds. Any potential candidates for any election or race will be able to draw a specified amount from that fund and only those funds can be used for their campaign.
The candidate will be able to disburse his allotted funds in any way chosen and would have to strictly stay within that budget. The candidate would have to continue to file detailed campaign reports that would show how much was spent on what. Best of all, no other monies, from PACs, individual donations or corporate donations, would be allowed.
This situation would thus perfectly highlight the fiscal capabilities of each candidate. And fiscal responsibility is an all-important duty of every politician.
This campaign financing system would also eliminate undue influences by wealthy individuals, lobbyists or corporations. It would also eliminate the necessity of political patronage after the election.
And in this way every tax-paying American will have a vital, important and larger role and responsibility in the election of all officials. They will feel more connected and involved in the most important function of our country. They won’t feel so angry or helpless or pushed into the gutter by the current way our elections are bought and sold by the highest bidder.
All I know is that we need stricter gun control laws to prevent more tragedies like what just occurred in San Bernardino and in the other senseless violent gun attacks all across the United States.
And if that means stricter gun laws, changing campaign financing laws, severely limiting the undue influences of organizations, lobbyists and PACs and/or standing up and challenging the irrational attitudes towards owning automatic weapons, then let’s do that!
We just cannot go on doing nothing but talk and question anymore.