Where There is Death, There is Concern
In 2012 during the LAPD gun buyback two rocket launchers surfaced. That is when I truly understood the scope of America’s firearm issue. Not one, but two rocket launchers were turned in that were previously in the possession of an assumed average citizen of America. I tried thinking about what kind of situation would call for an average citizen to find him or herself in need of a rocket launcher. No realistic situation came to mind.
It is after hearing about the kind of firearms that were collected during the buyback that I realized that the possession of firearms in America is in fact a big fucking problem. It’s not just about safety. It wanders into power, authority, and ego. For too long American citizens have gotten away with toting their firearms with them to go to Wal-Mart or strapping up before dropping their daughter off at the airport. Yes, everyone has his or her right to safety and protection. And by everyone I mean even those without firearms in the presence of those with firearms. They have a right to safety and protection, which is threatened by the presence of a firearm. Because the fact of the matter is firearms do inflict injury. Even when using a firearm correctly there is a chance that an innocent bystander can be struck by a bullet.
Times have changed from when the second amendment was written. Also written in the constitution are “The Abolition of Slavery” (13th Amendment), “Prohibition of Liquor” (18th Amendment), and “Women’s Right to Vote” (19th Amendment). Just to give some context to what exactly was going on in America during 1787. I understand that gun owners want their right to carry. It’s written in the constitution. It’s a family tradition. It’s fun. I get it. I used to think that eliminating guns all together was the answer. My opinion has evolved. You can have your guns, America. But we need reform.
Recently I got into friendly debate with a friend about gun ownership in America. He is a gun owner. I am not. He loves guns. I will never love guns. The best way I could explain to him my views on why we need reform was by comparing guns to cars.
In order to even be able to drive, in most states I believe, you need a provisional license. After holding your provisional license for a certain amount of time and after practice makes almost perfect you then must go back to the Department of Motor Vehicles and then take an actual driving test in which you must prove your driving skills. At that point you are harshly judged on how to parallel park and you either pass or fail. Plus there’s a whole bunch of paper work and extra requirements. And if your parents haven’t already bought you a car you can now go enjoy the process of buying a car and applying for car insurance and all that fun stuff. Now imagine if in order to drive a car all you needed to do was get in a car and go. No license, no practice, no test, no car insurance. Just go pick out a car (make sure it has an AUX cord though) hop in the drivers seat and take off. Imagine how hazardous our roads would be. Now I know you can’t just pay for a gun like you would pay for an iPhone and it’s yours, you’re good to go. But the process is too quick and simple for an item that could change the course of someone’s life.
You can be killed by a car, and you can be killed by a gun. But which one can be accessed quicker?