Carnes: Fewer (or more) guns not the answer, but common-sense regulations could be (column)
February 19, 2018
Lonely white boy legally purchases a gun and kills innocent people.
Pro- and anti-gun fanatics hold a field day of blame games while those in the middle use social media to project the tragically redundant "thoughts and prayers" to help them sleep better that night. Within a few days, extreme weather and/or a major sporting event occur and we all move forward with rose-colored memories.
It's Groundhog Day all over again: wash, rinse, repeat.
The latest school shooting is no different from the rest, except for the thousands directly affected.
And there are those already — in the first few sentences of this column — who have taken offense to the term "lonely white boy."
Some are upset over the phrase "legally purchases a gun."
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Still others I guarantee are troubled because I had the audacity to mention the sanctimonious futility of wishing between one's own ears.
Please, everyone, calm down, get a grip and face reality that the preferred weapon of choice for a killer is merely his tool, not the cause.
I do not care what his T-shirt says or the acronym on his hat or how insanely non-cryptic his Facebook posts were.
I don't care what party he is registered with, who he voted for, which deity he pretends to believe in or whether or not he drives an electric car.
Video games, Hollywood movies, pornography and music lyrics are prevalent around the globe, but repeated school massacres are almost exclusive to citizens of the United States.
So the true blame falls squarely on the trigger finger of the American psycho holding the weapon.
You want to blame the FBI or some other level of law enforcement, fine, go ahead, if that's what makes you feel better, by all means, protest away.
You wish to tie the brutal murders of 17 innocent individuals to a particular political mindset, fine, go ahead, paint yourself into an exit-free corner.
So am I saying guns are not the problem?
Of course not. Guns are certainly a major part of the problem, only the inanimate objects are not alone in their complicity.
Remember all the mindless cheering when senate candidate Roy Moore raised his pistol in a limp-wristed fashion to show what a manly-man he was?
If you were appalled by that, then welcome to the club.
If you cheered, then look in a mirror to help understand the root of the problem.
No, you did not cause this deranged individual to pull the trigger, but you helped support the national mindset for such acts.
With more guns in the hands of Americans than there are Americans, attempting to disarm a select few will not make a difference. Besides, purchasing a gun is your right, but health care for anyone you shoot is a privilege, I suppose.
And yes, a deranged individual intent on killing will find a weapon one way or the other, whether it's a gun, a truck or a fork.
I freely admit to not having any easy answers, but I do know we should be questioning the total reluctance on both sides to accept common sense regulations designed to keep firearms away from the criminal/mentally deranged minority without infringing on the rights of the law-abiding/sane majority.
If dead children do not motivate us as a nation to make changes, then nothing will.
Richard Carnes, of Edwards, writes weekly. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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