Sunday, December 6, 2015

It's becoming too common

For the second Sunday in three, during the "Prayers of the Faithful" at mass, we prayed for victims of something. Two weeks ago, it was the Paris attack. Today it was for the shooting in San Bernadino. Each time, I find my eyes welling with tears.

When will it stop? Pretty sure not in my lifetime, unfortunately.

As with so many other arguments, I get both sides of the gun debate. But at this point, shouldn't we at least try to have stricter gun control? A gun can kill. I don't think it should be a big deal if someone has to wait in line for a couple of hours, take some tests (like a driver's license), and have their background looked into. As I write this, I think it is pretty clear that I have no idea what is involved in getting a gun. I realize my suggestion would make buying a gun at a gun show a little challenging and maybe impossible, but whatever we are doing now is not working.

I also don't understand (and I have said this before, in this very blog) why people need to have assault weapons. If you want a handgun or a rifle for protection or because you like to hunt, fine. But why does some regular Joe or regular Jane need a semiautomatic weapon? Again, I realize I don't know much about guns, and maybe someone will come here and explain to me the different types and why I might want one of those guns.

I admit, I am scared of guns. I have no desire to hold one. I most definitely do not want to use one. And no one will ever get me to their side of the argument that says "if one person would have had a gun on his person, he could have shot the mass shooter." Maybe that regular Joe could have stopped a shooter in that situation, but innocent people could also be shot by the regular Joe. The police could shoot the regular Joe, not realizing he is trying to stop the shooter. There are so many variables. Advocating for teachers in classrooms and students on campus to carry concealed weapons is so scary a thought to me. But, at the same time, I am pretty sure that every week I am in the presence of someone who is legally packing heat, and, so far, nothing has happened.

Someone said this so much better than I can or will. But the larger problem is that something is so wrong with someone who shoots multiple people, particularly in a more public setting. I can understand (though I am certain I would never do it) someone who shoots someone else in anger. But to actually plan for an attack, carry it out, and keep shooting (or stabbing) multiple people? There is something so broken in that person. That is scary. How do we solve that?

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