ON GUN CONTROL
It is difficult to write about the ongoing shootings at schools, malls and other places this Christmas season. I do not understand people who murder other people in cold blood. I do not want to understand people who do this. What I want is for the situation to be dealt with. I do not see that happening any time soon.
The reasons for this ongoing violence are complex. One of them relates to the total collapse of the US mental health system. The other one relates to the culture of violence within our society today. Teenagers are now exposed to violent movies, video games and a popular culture which worships mindless violence. If we are serious about reducing gun violence, we must deal with drugs, mental illness, and violent video games and movies. Gun control is like swatting individual insects. You must drain the swamp first.
My first suggestion is an absolute age ban of 21 for all violent video games and movies. People wonder why 20-year-old young men go on shooting rampages. The reason is they have been going to horror movies pandering to mindless violence for several years. The reason is they play violent video games on a routine basis. Hollyweird and the game producers will say with a straight face there is no connection between horror films, violent video games and gun violence. This is a self-serving lie to maintain their healthy profits off of these products. In direct response to the Newton shootings, I would impose an X-21 rating on all violent video games and horror movies. Nobody under the age of 21 would be allowed to see horror movies, or play these violent computer games.
The second thing I would do is actually do something about the mentally ill people among us. The shooters who do these massacres have always left a trail of mental illness signs along the way. The system usually ignores these signs until the bullets are flying. It is a matter of funding more than anything else.
The third thing I would do is deal with the violence causing drugs always involved in these shootings. The Clackamas Town Center shooter was a user of methamphetamine. The Newton shooter was also on drugs as far as I can tell. A robust national effort to deal with the types of drugs involved in violence will bear results in dealing with these ticking time bombs living among us.
Finally, all the effort regarding more gun control laws is pathetic. Newton is in a state that has some of the most restrictive gun laws in the USA. If gun control laws actually reduced criminal acts, then they would have done so several decades ago. Gun control laws have no impact on criminal behavior for the simple reasons criminals don’t care about potential penalties for using a weapon in a crime. They are criminals after all! My only thought about this would be for what I call the “Oregon plan.” I would trade a national two-week waiting period, with the closing of the so-called private sale loophole, for a national concealed carry permit. This means that any US citizen could get a state concealed weapon permit that would be valid in all 50 states. They would have a background check, as well as take a gun safety course and prove the ability to use the handgun safely. I have no problem with this at all. We are now living in 2013, and not 1780, or 1870, and our gun laws need to reflect that. I do not think it is a bad thing to know that people who get a concealed weapon permit, or own personal weapons, are not drug users, mentally ill, or criminals. I do think we need to create a national concealed weapon permit system that will allow citizens to be armed everywhere they go. Society has collapsed to the point we need to be armed for self-protection at all times.
More gun control will have no impact on violent criminal acts. We are going to have to create a situation where the armed crazies are dealt with before they start shooting people. We are going to have to create a situation where when they do start shooting a concealed weapon permit holder takes them down. The only rational response to Newton is to arm teachers in every single school in the USA. We will have to go armed to the mall; we will have to go armed to the movie theater as well. This is the kind of society America has now become.