On Violence and Gun Control

Well, here we are again, my friends.  Looking at the aftermath of another day riddled with horrific gun violence in a very public fashion.  And once again, it’s time to rev the engines on the hottest debate to flood through the laymen and women of this country… gun control.

Now, I don’t want to dismiss the issue of gun control.  I do believe it’s important.  I do believe that easy access to guns with very few restrictions and little effort to enforce those few restrictions is a very big problem.  But at the same time, it’s not the only problem, and just improved gun control isn’t going to solve the tragedies that seem to occur on nearly a weekly basis nowadays.

These sort of events, this sort of complete collapse of humanity and general empathy to another person or group of people isn’t like a visit to Dairy Queen, where you pick one thing and consider your dessert run complete.  It’s more like an all you can eat buffet, where you get a whole meal taking from a bunch of different items.

Just removing easy access to guns isn’t going to solve the distressing lack of support for mental health and initiatives that aid people with mental illness.  It’s not going to quell the increasing disquiet about simmering racial tensions and culture of fear that lead to police officers shooting unarmed black men.  It’s not going to solve the increasing plight of people feeling they don’t have any other options to affect change in our social and economic structures.

It’s all well and good to fight for stronger gun control.  But humans (especially us Americans, it would seem) have this very obnoxious tendency to win one battle, then happily walk away like we had won the entire war.  We cannot allow this one flashpoint be the only one we address in our deeply scarred culture.

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