, Newburyport, MA


January 7, 2013

No simple solution to complex problem


The 2nd Amendment right to bear arms was intended for the needs of a militia, not for individuals to run around like cowboys. Does anyone really think that we need guns to protect us against our own government?

And are we really safer from our neighbors by having an arsenal of weapons? An acquaintance of mine, in the weapons business, once told me that I ought to have a gun for protection. He had needed one himself in a road rage incident to back off an oncoming assailant. He fired a warning shot into the air. “If I had shot him,” he said of a family he later came to know, “his brothers would have killed me.” Exactly, I thought.

As a human being, I have to wonder at how we as a society so glorify violence in video games, music and movies. As long as we flock to the theater to idolize men with large biceps and women with large busts who wield assault rifles, we must share the blame.

Do manufacturers of this material ever have a second thought as to what they are doing? Or even a first thought? Could today’s megastars ever turn down such roles as a statement of their concern?

We are, as a famous football coach is noted for saying, what our record says we are — a country with one of the highest gun homicide rates in the developed world.

And all Wayne LaPierre of the NRA can come up with is armed police officers in each and every school? By the way, would that raise taxes?

To paraphrase the NRA itself, all it takes to stop a man with a bad idea is a man with a good idea. Or, in this case, a compilation of potentially good ideas for a complex problem:

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