Friday, March 23, 2012

More Guns

More on guns from the Christian Science Monitor 3/12/12 issue by John Yemma: Since the last Supreme Court decision, “a slew of state laws have expanded access to firearms and the freedom to carry them in public.” This scares me, very much; makes me think violence and danger are increasing, and the ‘law,’ not only can’t stop it, but is enabling it.

Though he wasn’t speaking of guns, but of Bruce Springsteen’s new album, on Wednesday, Leonard Pitts said something that enhances this scary sense of out of control danger for me: “In a nation where corporations are people and fetuses are people, actual people could not catch a break, nor even much in the way of empathy. It is from the heart of this disconnection, this chasm between America that is and America that ought to be, that Springsteen issues his report.”

“In years to come,” Yemma says, “it appears there will be even more guns in more hands in more places than ever before. No one can say for sure if that will make society more, or less, safe.” Well, to me, given the flowering of anger and rage and extremism, it’s a no brainer – more guns equal less safety. “The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence argues that easy access to firearms is the reason almost 100,000 people are shot or killed in the US each year,” Yemma says.

Then goes on to say, “But do we blame the gun or the person?” Even Yemma does that silly, false moral equivalence that passes for good journalism – the over-simplified, wrong-headed ideal that there are only two sides to a story, both of equal validity, when in reality there are many sides, and stories are more complex than the so-called journalists want to or care to explain.

Hard to believe the same guy that wrote, “Guns have one purpose. They don’t cut rope, drive nails or propels baseballs. They are built to kill or maim,” also wrote,
“do we blame the gun or the person!” Duh!! The so called ‘objectivity’ inherent in the “do we blame the gun or the person,” statement is a huge part of the difficulties Americans are facing as a society.

Things are often very complex and grey and there are often no easy answers, but when there are easy answers and things are not so complex and grey, we need to say so. The easy access to guns is dangerous; just as the lack of civility is dangerous. Period! “With more and more citizens armed, and alienated,” Joy-Ann Reid wrote in yesterday’s Herald about the Trayvon Martin case, “the ordinary prejudices that sadly still afflict our society can become deadly.”

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