Thursday, April 18, 2013

No Top Gun

I have a problem with guns. I’ve never particularly liked them, even though I was quite a good shot with both the air pistol and rifle during my active time at pentathlon. My love is more for traditional weapons like swords, knives, and traditional Eastern martial arts weapons; basically weapons that dated back to an age when war still meant man against man in close combat, when it was still bloody, dirty, grisly business, before killing was de-humanized to be only a move of a finger to pull a trigger or push a button. Nowadays, war and killing has even become little more than a computer game, where kids, who have grown up with joy-sticks or controllers in hand, steer unmanned drones on a screen to deliver the blow.

I do have a problem with the Second Amendment and public gun ownership. I hope that most of you will agree with me that there are some people out there that simply should not own a weapon, no matter what the Constitution says. I don’t think that introducing gun control would decrease gun crime, since most crimes are committed with stolen or illegally-acquired weapons. But there is definitely a pattern of carelessness among gun owners.

Two very sad incidences during this last week show that: a little 4-year old boy shoots and kills the wife of a Tennessee deputy. According to preliminary investigations, the owner had shown his weapons to his friends as the woman and child joined them. At some point, the boy must have picked up a weapon and shot the woman
Another tragic accident happened just days apart when another 4-year old boy shoots his 6-year old friend with a .22 rifle; the 6-year old dies a day later from the head shot.
These tragedies show clearly, that a change of mind has to take place. Everyone is talking about the RIGHT to own firearms, no-one about the responsibility that comes with it. I have no problem if a person buys a gun, takes the proper training classes to be able to handle the weapon safely and stores it in an appropriate safety closet, unloaded and saved. Responsible gun owners keep their weapons out of reach of children and teach them the responsible handle of weapons once they are old enough. I cannot understand why people see their need to keep loaded weapons lying around. Is there any sense in owning semi-automatic weapons in a private household, as happened in the elementary school shooting in Newtown, Connecticut last December? Spontaneously, besides the mere right to do so, I don’t see any reason why.

In Germany, we have very strict gun laws. We still have gun crime, but much fewer spontaneous shootings, because it is very difficult to legally obtain a gun. I do fell safer here. I don’t think I would feel safe and comfortable in my house if I knew that there was a gun. I have knives that are well out-of reach of the girls. I have been trained in martial arts, and even though I am more than rusty, I know I would be able to use it should there ever be the need. 
Why only is the weapon lobby in the US so adamant against more gun control? Law-abiding citizens would have little to nothing to fear. Why not introducing a limitation on the number of functioning weapons one can buy? Why not limiting the type of weapons one can own without special permits? Is the arguments still about freedom or has it become fanaticism? 
I would love to hear your opinions on that matter!


  1. I agree with you completely. The gun laws in Australia are incredibly strict too, and as a direct result, the rates of gun crimes are relatively low. That's not to say they are nonexistent, but it is still definitely safer here than in America. What makes me mad is in the face of such damming evidence, the gun lobbyists still refuse to admit that their gun laws may need some tweaking. (Or a lot of tweaking)

    1. I'm not so much focusing on the crime; those weapons are often illegal anyways, and illegal weapons cannot be controlled. It's how irresponsible people handle the weapons they legally acquired that irks me. They do not store them safely out of reach of children, they sometimes don't know how to handle them safely and maintain them. That's a danger not only to them but also to others. I'm not in favor of completely abolishing the 2nd Amendment but to update it to include rules and regulations in order for the right to bear arms is followed by clear responsibilities.

  2. I don't think taking away anyones gun rights is going to change anything. We own a weapon but it is solely for protection purposes and it's locked up.

    1. Thanks for sharing your opinion, Jen. I would not have a problem if the people who fight any stricter gun regulations weren't often the ones who are incredibly careless with the weapons they own. My brother-in-law recently took his daughter to the gun range. She's 14 and Autistic; putting a loaded weapon in our nieces hands was such an incredible stupid and irresponsible thing to do. She could not only hurt herself but also others. That is the reason why I think there should be regulations, mandatory safety courses, etc.