25 April 2007

On a serious note...

This week's New Yorker has one of the best commentaries I've read regarding the VaTech massacre. I'll be political for a moment (I'm not usually on this blog), but its time Congress adopts some sensible gun control laws. According to this article, "On a recent list of the fourteen worst mass shootings in Western democracies since the nineteen-sixties the United States claimed seven, and, just as important, no other country on the list has had a repeat performance as severe as the first..."

Red flag, anyone?

Full article here.

Some excerpts:

"Reducing the number of guns available to crazy people will neither relieve them of their insanity nor stop them from killing. Making it more difficult to buy guns that kill people is, however, a rational way to reduce the number of people killed by guns. Nations with tight gun laws have, on the whole, less gun violence; countries with somewhat restrictive gun laws have some gun violence; countries with essentially no gun laws have a lot of gun violence. (If you work hard, you can find a statistical exception hiding in a corner, but exceptions are just that. Some people who smoke their whole lives don’t get lung cancer, while some people who never smoke do; still, the best way not to get lung cancer is not to smoke.)"

"It’s true that in renewing the expired ban on assault weapons we can’t guarantee that someone won’t shoot people with a semi-automatic pistol, and that by controlling semi-automatic pistols we can’t reduce the chances of someone killing people with a rifle. But the point of lawmaking is not to act as precisely as possible, in order to punish the latest crime; it is to act as comprehensively as possible, in order to prevent the next one. Semi-automatic Glocks and Walthers, Cho’s weapons, are for killing people. They are not made for hunting, and it’s not easy to protect yourself with them. (If having a loaded semi-automatic on hand kept you safe, cops would not be shot as often as they are.)"

"Rural America is hunting country, and hunters need rifles and shotguns—with proper licensing, we’ll live with the risk. There is no reason that any private citizen in a democracy should own a handgun. At some point, that simple truth will register. Until it does, phones will ring for dead children, and parents will be told not to ask why.There is no reason that any private citizen in a democracy should own a handgun. At some point, that simple truth will register. Until it does, phones will ring for dead children, and parents will be told not to ask why.
"

1 comment:

Lameevan said...

WORD