Tag Archives: gun control

Just This Once, a Good Person With a Gun Stopped a Bad Person With a Gun

Gun control is one of those issues with the potential to tear this country apart. Among the many arguments against gun control is the following: “a good person with a gun can stop a bad person with a gun”.

On Sunday, at a small church in Texas, a man walked in and started firing. It could have been a massacre. But it was stopped by members of the church security team, two of whom gave their lives to save the lives of their fellow parishioners.

In this case, the fact that the security team was armed saved lives. That much is true and not up for debate. However, I still believe that this country needs common sense gun laws. It does not take a genius to understand to put two and two together. Lax and varied gun laws lead to mass shootings. A national gun law that mandates universal background checks is absolutely necessary.

Too many in this country have been lost to mass shootings. Until we take action, we will continue mourn for those who were taken by gun violence.

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Thoughts On the Anniversary of the Sandy Hook School Shooting

Seven years ago, the students and staff entered Sandy Hook elementary school as they would any school day. By the time the school day ended, 26 people, mostly six and seven-year-old students were dead.

If these children were alive today, these children would either be twelve or thirteen years old. They would be on the brink of teenage-hood and everything that comes with being a teenager. But they will never experience what it is like to be a teenager or anything else for that matter.

If I had a time machine, I would go back in time and try to stop the massacre of innocent life. But time machines do not exist. The only thing we can do is move forward and remember the lives who were taken far too soon.

We can also honor their memory by preventing another massacre of this ilk. Common sense gun laws and assistance for those with mental health issues are not a 100% foolproof to prevent another Sandy Hook. But they can go a long way in helping drastically cut down the number of young people who are killed in school.

May the memories of the 26 people killed that day and hundreds of others who died in mass shootings since them be a blessing. Z”l.

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Thoughts On the Shooting in Jersey City and the Nationality Execution on American Jews

After the Holocaust, we said never again. Never again would let our neighbors and our government kill us for who we are. But the phrase “never again” has become empty.

Yesterday, there was a mass shooting in Jersey City. When the dust finally settled, six people were dead (the suspects included). Among the deceased is a police officer who gave his life to protect innocent civilians and two members of the city’s growing Hasidic Jewish community.

It would be too obvious to talk about gun control and the serious need (which continues to be ignored by certain politicians) for reasonable gun control laws. But then again, it would also be obvious that the suspects were motivated by hate and antisemitism.

In Washington D.C., the man who goes by the title of President of the United States has signed an executive order to protect those of the Jewish faith against discrimination. Specifically, the executive order is in place to protect students, professors and staff on college campuses from being harassed because they are Jewish.

On the surface, this is exactly what is needed. But, like anything that you know who does, there is another side that could be easily ignored. In this executive order, Judaism is defined as a nationality. It is not a nationality. if it was, all Jews would come from one country. But we don’t.

Would one refer to Christians as a nationality? Or Muslims, Hindus, etc as a nationality? No. Like all faiths, we come from all over the world. There are two problems with this mis-categorization. The first problem is that it is wrong. Am I shocked that no one in the administration did their homework? Not at all.

The second problem is that labeling Jews as a nationality could lead to a slippery slope. In the years leading up the World War II, the term “the Jewish race” bounced around Europe like a ping pong ball. Let’s just say that these terms don’t bode well for anyone, especially those in the specific group being mentioned.

I wish we had a President who understood that he needs to be humble, mature, thoughtful and prepared for the job at hand. Instead, we have a man baby with the temper of a tantruming toddler, an ego the size of Texas and an intellect that is non-existent.

G-d help this country.

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When Did School Shootings Become the New Normal?

When we send our children to school, we hope that what they learn will help them to become responsible and functioning adults. We don’t send them to school to be killed by their peers.

There was another school shooting today. Just as the school day began at Saugus High School in Santa Clarita, California, a sixteen-year-old student started to shoot his classmates. As of just a few hours ago, two students were killed and three were injured. The accused gunman is in the hospital with a self-inflicted gun wound.

When did school shootings become the new normal in America? I’d like to turn on the news and see that our children have come home from school safe and sound. In fact, I would like to turn on the news and not hear that innocent lives have been taken because those in power are pussy-footing around gun control.

When I was in school, the idea of a student bringing a gun to school and shooting and/or killing their classmates was a nightmare confined to the world of fiction. The kids today are growing up with this as a reality.

How many innocent young lives will be taken before something is done? What will it take for Congress to finally pass reasonable gun control laws?

I can only imagine the grief of the families of the students killed. May their memories be a blessing and may the loss of these children finally light a fire under the proverbial behinds of those who can stop this madness.

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Walmart is Stepping Up and Will No Longer Sell Ammo For Assault Style Weapons

It seems these days that mass shootings have become just another headline.

While some politicians (I’m still looking at you, Mitch McConnell) refuse to do anything, the decision makers at Walmart have made an important step in the right direction.

As of yesterday, Walmart will be drastically reducing the ammunition for assault style rifles that in the past, customers have been able to purchase freely.

If I am to be honest here, I would prefer if they stopped selling guns and ammunition all together. However, the fact that they will be reducing their ammunition sales is not to be overlooked.

I have nothing against guns or the Second Amendment. If someone wants to buy guns because they hunt as a hobby or let off steam by going to a gun range, that is their business. But what is my business (and the business of every American) is the fact that too many of our citizens have been killed by mass shootings.

Back in 1989, the late President Ronald Reagan (R-California) made a statement about guns which I believe still rings true today.

If only the current Republican party would heed his words.

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The Cycle of Mass Shootings Begins Again

For many of us, Labor Day is the lovely, but unwanted reminder that Fall is coming. It’s the last opportunity to go to the beach, to go to the ballpark and to barbecue. In short, it is the last hurrah of the summer.

But for the people of Texas, this Labor Day weekend is just another cycle of mass shootings. Over the past 48 hours, there were two mass shootings in Texas. In Midland, 7 people are dead. In Odessa, 5 people are dead and 21 are injured. Among the injured is a little girl under the age of two.

At this point in time, the motives of the shooters are not known.

I don’t know about anyone else, but I feel like I am becoming desensitized to this headline. It is becoming too commonplace, just another day in America and another mass shooting.

I don’t want to be desensitized. I want to be angry and frustrated that some of our politicians (I am looking at you, Mitch McConnell) continue to put their head in the sand or look the other way.

At some point, this madness has to stop. At some point, we must enact common sense gun legislation that protects innocent civilians while protecting the rights of responsible gun owners. Frankly, I don’t know when we will reach that point.

May the memories of those murdered be a blessing.

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Where Are You, Mitch McConnell?

Last weekend, Americans were shocked and horrified by two mass shootings within a 24 hour period. Once again, this nation is confronted with the difficult question of how to keep the average citizen safe while respecting the rights of lawful gun owners.

Many (myself included) believe that the only way to decrease the number of mass shootings and save lives is to tighten gun control laws and enforce background checks as national law. Even you know who has stated (though I don’t quite believe that he would follow through on his statement) that he believes that background checks are necessary.

The issue at this particular point in time that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) refuses to call members of the Senate back to Washington to vote on a bill. He prefers to wait when the Senate reconvenes next month.

I get it. The members of the Senate deserve a vacation like the rest of us. However, they are not Jane or John Doe office worker. They have the power to potentially save lives, if they have the political willpower and the balls to do so.

Those of us in the United States have become sadly conditioned to seeing the headlines telling us of another mass shooting. Granted, tightening gun control laws will not completely prevent mass shootings, but they could decrease the number of shootings and the lives taken unnecessarily.

That is, if Senator McConnell does the job that the voters of Kentucky hired him to do.

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Same Hypocrite, Different Day

One of the jobs of the President of the United States is to be the “consoler in chief” when a national tragedy strikes.

As we all are aware, there were two mass shootings on Saturday. Yesterday, you know who spoke to the country.

He sounded Presidential, but in reality, he was the same hypocrite on a different day.

He talked about ending racism, white supremacy and unifying the country. But his words are sound and fury signifying nothing.

He talked about the mental health of the accused gunmen, which personally offended me. To say that the accused in both shootings are mentally ill, without knowing all of the facts is derogatory to all of us who have the unwanted friend that is mental illness.

He also talked about how violent video games contributed to real life violence. This has been proven wrong time and again. And yet, politicians will use that an excuse for the lack of real reform of gun laws.

Just after the Columbine massacre, some were saying that the music of Marilyn Manson was to blame for the shooting. I wish those in the leadership positions, whether in a religious role or a political role, would put on their big boy/big girl pants and take a real look at what caused the accused to kill innocent people.

Those of us who are of a certain age and older remember the dark days after 9/11. Then President George W. Bush stood on top of the rubble with his arm around a first responder and addressed the nation. Putting aside partisan politics, he also spoke of unity and coming together. That speech felt authentic. Yesterday’s speech was not.

May the memory of those murdered be a blessing and may we finally enact sensible gun legislation so we never have another weekend like we just had.

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I Blame You, Mr. President

When boiled down to a simple job description, the job of the President of the United States is to protect and serve the American people. Their job is not to serve and protect wealth donors/lobbyists or a specific group of citizens.

And yet, this President has done both.

His openly racist comments and double talk about the continuing gun violence has led to an epidemic of massacres in this country. Yesterday, the list of mass shootings in the United States added two more communities to this gruesome and bloody list: Dayton, Ohio and El Paso, Texas.

At this point, I am ready to throw my hands up the air. It is well beyond frustrating that some of our elected politicians (you know who included) continue to look the other way or give lip service to this continuing crisis. Will it get to the point that we will have to go through airport level security every time we leave our homes?

Personally, I blame you know who. The accused gunmen were Caucasian men who used racist rhetoric and beliefs as a reason for their actions. It does not help that you know who has openly expressed racists beliefs without being checked by those who can check him. It also does not help that he has given lip service to those who have experienced gun violence while supporting the NRA.

I don’t want to have to go through airport style security every I have leave my home. But at this point, it feels like that may be the only option. That is, unless some of our elected politicians grow a pair and fight for the citizens who were elected to represent them.

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Thoughts On the new Madonna Music Video

I’ve often spoken about the Columbine shooting and the unnecessary loss of young life twenty years ago. Back then, it was front page news for weeks on end.

These days, mass shootings in the United States are just another blip on list of daily news headlines. The headline may last a week at best on the front page before it slowly fades from the nation’s consciousness.

Earlier this week, Madonna released her new music video. Entitled God Control, the video tells the story of a fictional shooting in an New York City nightclub similar to the massacre at the nightclub in Orlando three years ago.

I will warn you that the video does contain graphic imagery.

There is enormous power in celebrity. In using her voice and her music, Madonna speaks of the heartache and grief that gun violence creates. We need sensible gun control laws. There has to be a way to respect the 2nd Amendment and responsible gun owners while protecting innocent people.

My hope (though it often springs eternal) is that one of these days, sensible gun laws will be the law of the land. Until then, we will continue to grieve for those who are killed simply because they are in the wrong place at the wrong time.

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