Children, Guns and Murder

The Uvalde murder of children and teachers will be remembered as a situation in which the police did not respond according to protocol. The incident was not a hostage situation. Initial responders should have entered the school immediately and attempted to disarm or kill the shooter at all costs. If anyone is not prepared to come to the aid of a child threatened by an individual with a weapon, he or she should not be a police officer.

Having said this, it’s almost unfair to criticize someone who is not prepared to risk their own life, even to save young children. But police are supposedly trained to do exactly that. Whether lives would have been saved if the police acted sooner, we will never know.

Murder in schools is not something Americans can ever accept under any circumstances. The value of a life is not easy to quantify, but most agree that the loss of a seven-year-old is among the worst things that can happen in our society.

My heart goes out to all those who were caught in the carnage last week. Parents, other children who were spared and observers will be haunted by the evil that pervaded the quiet little town of Uvalde. And, we, all Americans, should put our differences aside so that this never happens again.

In the interest of full disclosure, I am anti guns and believe our society would be a better place if no one owned deadly weapons. But many disagree and say the Constitution guarantees Americans the right to bear arms. Practically, it’s folly to think we can become a society without weapons. But there is no place for automatic and assault weapons in my view.

So, we must compromise and find common ground to monitor and limit the number of weapons, prevent children and troubled people from carrying them and ensure that everyone who has a gun understands how to care for it responsibly to make our communities safer.

Radical and demented individuals have an enormous impact on the security of our country. These individuals are motivated by their political beliefs, religion, job dissatisfaction and/or depression. If they are able to acquire weapons, they wreak havoc on peace-loving people.

Looking back to the 9/11 attack, a small gang of terrorists from the Middle East killed several thousand people. They used box cutters to hijack commercial airliners and pilot them into the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. What was the motivation to engage in a suicide mission and impose such terrible grief upon fellow human beings? If they were alive to speak for themselves, perpetrators would probably say the deaths eliminated heathens and non-believers.

I think it’s righteous to protect innocents, especially young school children. One side of the gun debate blames the proliferation of handguns and rifles for countless deaths. The other side believes that the people who kill are the killers, not the guns they use. Any sensible individual should accept that there is truth in both perspectives.

Millions of Americans own guns legally and care for them responsibly. They resent efforts to make it more difficult to purchase and own guns. These people point out that thousands of people are killed on the streets of the major cities by individuals that own illegal weapons. Why take away the constitutional rights of legitimate gun owners? Shouldn’t our politicians, Supreme Court justices and police focus on illegal ownership of weapons?

On the other side of the coin are those against gun ownership saying that there are so many guns in this country that it is too easy for a person to acquire one and shoot up an elementary school after experiencing an unfortunate moment or event.

There are about 340 million people in the US. On any given day, a huge number of people are having a bad experience- marital problems, money problems, problems with the kids, problems with neighbors. A certain number of people are going to spin out of control every day of the week. The key is to get these people help before they do any harm to themselves or others. The mental aspect of gun control is what needs to be analyzed.

Security for our children is also on the line. Schools must do more to protect them starting with the hiring of more individuals. If they are not armed, what is the sense of doing so? I heard a report that there is over $110 billion of unallocated Covid funds that could be granted to the states to secure our children.

And what about the violence that we are subjected to on the streets, on TV, in the news, in the movies, on our cell phones? Turn on the 11:00 o’clock news and it will always have a story or two about robberies, murder and abuse involving weapons.

Illegal acts should all be subjected to arrest and imprisonment. Cops are currently shy about taking action because some politicians blame police for unnecessary aggressive techniques. Thankfully, defunding of police is a dead issue.

I hope that the latest tragedy in Uvalde will finally have an impact on gun control and control of people who have access to guns.  

Leave a Reply