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Guns don't bother me; it’s whose finger is on the trigger

Sunday, February 24, 2013 - 12:01 am

OK, as I understand it, the main argument promoted by those described as gun control advocates is the “availability” factor. In other words, if I or anyone else wishes to purchase let’s say a Heckler & Koch MR556 legally, then take it home and lock it in a secure gun case, we may find ourselves on a future most-wanted list simply because it now becomes available to someone who would break into our house and take it from us illegally.

For example, as explained to us by MSNBC, “A tough weapons ban might have blocked the sale of the Bushmaster XM-15 that Adam Lanza’s mother bought legally and which police say he used to kill his victims in the school.”

It may be true that, in fact, Adam Lanza would not have had that particular gun to use in his killing spree. But I wonder if it would have stopped him from totally going on his rampage, which included murdering his mother while she slept.

On the other hand, perhaps he would have used a weapon of another sort. Say for example the type used by 14 year-old Michael Carneal. On Dec. 1, 1997, Carneal walked into Heath High School in West Paducah, Ky. Then, pulling out a .22-caliber pistol, he proceeded to fire all eight shots the gun held into a group of students who had gathered for prayer in school. In all, three students died and five more were wounded. Keep in mind that a .22 pistol is not on anybody’s list to have banned, at least not yet.

Growing up in the ’60s and on an Indiana farm I certainly had guns available to me. They were kept in order to stave off varmints or stray dogs that were apt to kill off livestock. No, I did not have an AR-15 at my disposal, but we did have high-caliber hunting rifles and .22-caliber semi-automatics, which had a capacity of 19 rounds and could fire a round just as fast as you could pull the trigger. This was true as well for almost all those kids I grew up with.

I’m sure some of you are thinking, “But Bob, President Obama and his fellow gun-control advocates aren’t suggesting we take away those types of guns used for hunting.”

But that’s not my point. No matter how angry at my parents, or my teachers I got (and I got mad on plenty of occasions), it never ever entered my mind to get back at my perceived antagonists by taking one of the available firearms and delivering a message to the world by gunning them down. Maybe those repeated “Golden Rule” sermons I heard over and over again in church and back in those days, even in school, left an impact.

Not so long ago I was made aware of a group of middle school girls who had taunted another girl whom they did not know who had been walking by a school minding her own business. When the girl responded to the group saying only, “Leave me alone,” the group of girls surrounded her, pulled her down to the ground by her hair and then savagely beat her. The girl who was beaten posed no threat to the group. Later on, when being interviewed, the attackers admitted that they had never laid eyes on their victim prior to the confrontation.

Then there is the local student who not so long ago approached another student in the school cafeteria and shoved a knife into his neck. Why such violent attitudes? Why did the attackers derive such enjoyment/satisfaction in seeing a helpless victim suffer so?

Interestingly, following the killings at West Puducah, one of the parents of a murdered student filed a lawsuit against several media outlets for what was claimed to have inspired Michael Carneal. Among the defendants were the producers of popular teenage killer movies “Natural Born Killers” and “The Basketball Diaries.” Eventually, the case was dismissed by the arrogance of the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. The justices would simply say it was “too far a leap from shooting characters on a video screen to shooting people in a classroom.”

Keep in mind this statement when considering that before Carneal shot eight students with eight shots, a feat that even amazed professional marksmen, he had never shot a real gun prior to his pulling the trigger of that .22 pistol that morning. But he did develop his skills and his attitude toward life by practicing hours on end by playing gun simulation video games. You know, the kind that is popular with today’s youth culture by showing massive blood spills and brains being blown all over.

We feed our children graphic violence daily. We have irreverently destroyed our traditions and culture, which, in turn, leads our children on paths of uncertian character development. Guns and weapons of all sorts have been with us forever; this New Age way of thinking promoted by a liberally biased media just a little over 40 years.

If we ban guns, even if we ban all guns irrespective to the vast majority of gun owners whose weapons will never be used in any kind of heinous act, do we really believe that in today’s world, this unimaginable violence will end. The gun is nothing more than a tool. Take away a man’s shovel, and if a ditch needs to be dug, I gurantee you he will find another way. Will we stop being concerned when those such as Dylan Kleibold and Eric Harris of Columbine fame continue to kill with homemade bombs instead of MAC 10s?

Life doesn’t mean much anymore, marriage has more to do with sex than the raising of a family, criminals are to be understood instead of receiving punishment equal to the crime they committed and legalization of drugs and their impact on the young means little as long as daddy can get high without feeling any guilt.

What do you expect in a society where the likes of Lindsay Lohan gets more media attention than Jesus Christ? It’s the culture, stupid!

I’ve said it before, the gun doesn’t bother me. It’s whose finger is on the trigger.

Bob Rinearson is a resident of Fort Wayne.