So. Hi. It's...been a while. Lots has happened: a hotly contest election, a horrific massacre of schoolchildren, the holidays, the Redskins and the Ravens both in the NFL playoffs (well, not anymore. Godspeed RGIII.) And today I was able to use some of my lunch hour to watch the President's gun control press conference.
Full disclosure: I tuned in about 3 minutes late so I missed the opening pieces but what I heard was fair, balanced and reasonable. Background checks for anyone buying a gun? How is this possibly a bad idea. I would take it one step further: we have to license and register dogs and cars, why not guns? When used for their intended purpose they have but one use: to kill whatever is being targeted at that time. Limits on magazine capacity? Again, why is this a bad idea? If you are using your gun for hunting and it takes more than 10 bullets to kill a deer, well, then you might want to consider a new hobby. Banning military-style 'assault' weapons? Again, a no brainer. Why are they needed? For hunting? Good luck getting any useful meat out of that carcass. They exist in the civilian world for one reason: to give people who have nothing else to hold onto that they have a measure of control, that they are powerful. Very few gun enthusiasts have come out and declared the white elephant in the room that I have seen but the few who have, the admission is: it's fun. It's fun to shoot and you feel powerful and in control. God-like almost. You have the power to decide if another (human or animal) lives or dies. Heady heady power indeed.
The President took great pains to remind folks that he is not talking about hunting rifles, handguns, sport guns (whatever that means). No one's 'rights' are being infringed upon. You can still have guns, what you can't have are military style weapons that are designed to deliver bullets as fast as possible into as many objects as possible and you can't have unlimited ammunition with which to do this. But you know whose rights have been infringed upon? Those who have been cut down by assholes wielding these weapons. What about their inalienable right to LIFE, LIBERTY and the pursuit of HAPPINESS? Kind of hard to do that when you are dead, don't you think?
But this won't work, then only criminals will have guns, etc. etc. and so forth. Guess what? Doing the right thing isn't easy and banning the sale of certain types of weapons and ammunition and requiring stringent background checks for any and all guns purchased from anywhere is the right thing. Twenty first graders paid the ultimate price for the gun lobby's 'rights' while theirs were dismissed without pause.
Maybe all guns should be banned. With great power comes great responsibility and if adults in this country aren't willing to bear the heavy weight of responsibility, then maybe they shouldn't have the power either.