Friday, July 20, 2012

My rant for today...

I don't talk about politics outside my home EVER, and I refuse to engage a friend when the conversation somehow moves in that direction. My political opinions are just that...opinions that belong to me that I will never expect anyone to share or understand.  But not today.  I guess you could say that the straw has broken this camel's back.

I come from a family of cops and hunters.  Both of whom carry weapons for very good reasons.  The former, to keep the bad guys in check and the later to hunt food for the family.  I believe in our second amendment right to bare arms.  However, I think it's time that we take another look at the second amendment and maybe update it to be more applicable to the twenty-first century.

Our enemies should never be better or "more" armed than our police officers.  And I can think of NO reason that a civilian would need a multitude of weapons...especially of the automatic variety.

Today we slept in (on accident) and woke up to dozens of emails asking about what happened.  We quickly turned on the local news to learn that our wonderful city and its suburbs had suffered yet another massacre.  A "very deranged" gunman walked into a theater and opened fire, injuring 59 and killing 12.  My list of reasons for being so upset about this is long (why was a 4 month old baby at a movie...let alone at midnight!), but I will try and stay on topic.

This guy walked in with tear gas, two 40-caliber Glock handguns, a single-barrel shot gun and an AR-15 assault rifle and opened fire.  Surely, and ironically, he must have had a screw or two loose.  I don't care if he was getting his PhD in neuroscience...the guy was a little "off" to say the least.

I will never object to walking through a metal detector, anywhere, anytime.  But it is increasingly providing a false sense of security.  This yahoo was in the theater, slipped out the emergency exit and managed to reenter through that door wearing a gas mask and Kevlar vest and carrying more artillery than the Denver PD, Aurora PD or any other agency carries at one time.

I understand the argument that some have for carrying handguns.  I can't tell you how many times I've heard someone say, "when that a-hole opens fire, if I have a licence and a concealed handgun, I can take him down."  I never respond, but today I will finally say what's on my mind when I hear that.

Here's my response:  "Really?  Because in the Saturday afternoon class you took that gives you the right to have that gun, did they teach you about staying calm in a crisis situation?  Is your aim so spot-on perfect that in a crisis you could be guaranteed 100% to only hit your target, and would need only a single shot to do so?  And because you are allowed to carry that handgun, that a-hole who just opened fire that you are planning on taking out is also allowed to carry weapons but his are bigger, better, faster and stronger than yours.  The only difference between you and him is the size of the gun, a Kevlar protective vest and a few brain cells."

Whew.  I feel slightly better.  Handguns aren't our problem, nor are hunting riflfes.  It's the availability and legality of bigger, more powerful weapons I have a problem with.  I am not an activist.  I won't start a march or a protest or even write a congressman or senator.  It just bugs me.  A lot.

The only thing I will do is raise my son to be a good man.  To understand right from wrong and respect the life we are each given.  That every person he meets will be someone's son or daughter, sister or brother, niece or nephew.  And that everyone deserves to be loved.  That sometimes good people do bad things.  And very rarely is a person a truly bad person.  I will raise my son to have educated opinions and know it's always OK to have an opinion as long as he can articulate why he feels that way.  That there is NEVER a good reason for taking the life of another person.  I will teach my son about stranger danger, how to be aware of his surroundings and what to do if he sees something suspicious...all without making him afraid of everything.  And God willing, I will never have to explain to him why some a-hole walked into a place my son feels safe and opened fire.

And that's all I have to say about that.  Because this is my blog and today I am just ranting, I have turned off the comments for this post.  I am sure you can do a simple Google search and find far more passionate and educated stances on this issue than I have made here.  I am also certain you could dig up just as many with differing opinions that are far more passionate and educated.  But this is just one humble woman's cursory opinion on a very politically charged issue.

I am noting here in very fine print that I am pretty sure most of my family disagrees with gun control legislation and that if this blog were to fall in the hands of SOME of my family members, I may be stripped of maiden name.  But hey, what's a family gathering without a good heated discussion where there is no absolute right or wrong?  Just a whole lotta Mac-opinions! 

Also note, that I don't advocate for so much regulation that we aren't allowed target practice, skeet shooting recreation, hunting and a little red-rider fun.  I just don't see the need for automatic weapons to be allowed in civilian hands.