Shooting Incident

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Predictably, the incident in Connecticut has brought the usual suspects forward to demand gun control. We have 15,000 homicides in the US every year, year after year, decade after decade. Multiple or mass homicides average 150 per year, year after year, decade after decade. That is only 1% of the annual homicides. The huge difference in these two numbers would suggest that the focus needs to be on the larger problem rather than the smaller, but more visible one.

The problem isn’t the weapons. To address that is a cheap and politically easy way to pretend we are dealing with what is really a public health issue. Addressing mental health in a comprehensive way that insures that people can and do obtain treatment for psychological disorders such as the extreme paranoia that propels these incidents is complicated and costly, which is why the pols prefer “gun control.” The problem with it is that it doesn’t address the pathologies that cause the killing sprees in the first place and consequently doesn’t work. The other countries often cited as examples of successful gun control have such public health systems in place. That is why they didn’t have the high homicide rates even before outlawing guns.

We had an assault weapons ban for 10 years and it had no effect at all on the statistics cited above: none. Outlawing AR-15’s will not even touch the issue of homicide, but it will step all over our Second Amendment. I do not trust government, any government, not to abuse a disarmed public. Those who want power over others always clamor for more. This incident simply gives them an excuse. I like all of the Amendments to the Constitution and believe they were put there for valid reasons. All governments should fear their citizenry to a certain degree. It is healthy and Thomas Jefferson agreed. They won’t fear a disarmed rabble, they will simply exploit them.

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