Guns and what to do about them

I had two friends die while I was in high school.

One, Bobby Galvez, was climbing some rocks along a beach front.  He slipped and plunged tragically to his death.

The other, Bernie Thomas, died with his father and brother in a plane crash.

Their passing took place only months apart.  These two deaths rattled our tiny, Santiago high school to its core.

This post does not intend to compare horror stories with the tragedies America has experienced recently.  I only mean to tell you I lost two friends in high school to deaths that I remember to this day… and they were accidents.  I can’t even fathom what kids these days who have seen their class mates shot are going through and how they will be affected, not just now but for the rest of their lives.

I think back upon my high school days from time to time and remember them fondly.  I even remember one character sneaking a loaded rifle into a library.  Fortunately, he didn’t use it.

The same can’t be said for present day America where mass shootings in schools have become a gruesome norm.

This is no propaganda post.  I can’t think of anyone who is pro-mass shooting.  I’m hoping we can at least agree on that.

I’m not here to tell you not to own a gun.  Our Constitution grants you that right.  What it doesn’t give you is the right to kill someone in cold blood, senselessly and violently.

I’m not quite sure what’s going with America right now but I can’t say I’m a fan.  We are a nation conflicted.

Those who are reading this are probably in agreement.  I know my audience.  It’s those who aren’t that I’m worried about.

To not make changes in the way we live our lives and the way we treat others diminishes the legacies of those who have perished.  And yet we bicker about how to resolve the problem.

Allow me to clearly state for the record that we are ALL to blame for the lack of constructive dialogue.  Until that impasse is resolved, these senseless acts will continue and expound.

Regurgitating statistics on gun violence to support one side or another resolves nothing.  I humbly present the only statistic that matters.  One shot kid at a school is one shot kid too many.

So… what are we, “the greatest nation on earth,” going to do about this?

For those of us with little faith, I can prove to you we are just that despite our misgivings.  The acts of men like Aaron Feis, assistant coach on the Parkland High football team, who gave his life shielding kids from the shooter, prove there is still good in the world.  To the family that raised Mr. Feis, unbelievable job.  I just hope that he will not have lived, and died, in vain.

I guess what I’m failing to understand amidst all of this is… if we’re all against mass shootings, why can we not come up with a solution?

I guess that’s above my pay grade.

I recently wrote that the Olympics needed more villains for ratings sake.  In the wake of the Miami tragedy, this has all new meaning.  In the war against these atrocities, the real villains are apathy and indecision.

The South Florida shootings made me think once again of Bernie and Bobby not because of how they passed but because their lives were taken way too soon.  What if one of those kids slain was meant to cure cancer or write the great American novel or invent something, anything that would improve the way we live our lives today.

To that I say, we’ll never know.  And we’ll continue to never know.  That, my friends, is a crying shame.

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19 Replies to “Guns and what to do about them”

  1. We don’t blame cars for drunk drivers, why blame guns for violent people? Grabbing guns because criminals use them is like castrating yourself because your neighbor has too many kids. Someone who is willing to slaughter innocent people certainly won’t care about stricter gun laws.

    Banning guns won’t happen, nor would it work. See the war on drugs.

    “Gun free zones” = Easy targets for wingnuts.

    The fear of people shooting back is a legit deterrent for these cowards. When was the last time a mass shooter attacked a gun range or a donut shop?

    If politicians and celebrities are worthy of armed guards, so are our kids.

    There are plenty of trained vets, ex-cops and private security to have a few at each and every school. And any teacher or Aaron Fies that’s willing to become a concealed carry, all the better IMO. Finding the funds should be as easy as cutting some meaningless government waste and investing it into protecting our kids instead.

  2. The country has yet to learn and the fact of the matter remains , the nation’s leaders are weak at both the state federal level. Consider they only pay these tragedies lip service as a momentary measure in paying their respects and then move on to the next tragedy that may come along. Beyond that nothing else needs to be said.

  3. Obviously, we are on opposite sides of the political spectrum. But we also seem to be able to talk to each other and (gasp) find out we agree on a lot stuff. That is a rare quality in this country today, so I think we should be allowed to devise solutions for these problems since everybody else seems more interested in winning the “:range war” than fixing anything.

  4. I have a idea and attempted solution to thwart this heinous crap.
    Many of these massacres are a result of copycat madness. Not to compare the gravity of these acts, but remember when ppl(mostly teens) would run across fields disrupting in progress games? It pretty much was reduced when cameras would not focus on them. To a degree, 24 hour news in a subtle way promotes these tragedies. Sadly enough, they benefit from them.
    Changing world. New evil events are continually popping up. Airline hijackings were drastically reduced when TSA and sky marshals were brought into play.Unfortunately, deterrents in that area will have to be employed. Trump mentioned arming teachers? What a dangerous joke. Outside trained security would suffice. $$ cost? Aren’t many of these lotteries intended for education? Cough it up! They sure as hell aren’t overpaying the teachers.

  5. I don’t know about anyone else, but I’m probably still here because none of my teachers were strapped. Humor aside the fact is weapons of war should be left to the military. I’m a gun owner and live in the kind of neighborhood most of you would give a wide berth. I don’t need a AR-15 to take care of my business. The large capacity clips are an evil that must be deterred. Unlike a certain congressman, I don’t equate a semi automatic weapon with a maximum capacity clip with a shovel. My compliments to you Rev for addressing this issue and may God have mercy on us all.

  6. It’s now surfacing that there WAS an armed deputy assigned to the school that was on duty at the time of the shooting, but didn’t engage the shooter.

    Having a coward unwilling to do his job and step in to protect the kids at their time of utmost need is disheartening to say the least. He made phone calls instead of taking action to step in and personally try to stop the slaughter, choosing to preserve his own worthless existence while children and heroes like Aaron Fies died on his watch.

    There are no easy answers or true solutions to this type of senseless violence. Lunatics will find way to unleash their terror on the world by whatever means is available to them. We see it in worldwide with random terrorism and dumbfounding coldheartedness by groups like ISIS as well as crazies like the Boston Marathon bombers or lone wolf nutbags.

    The kid had a well documented history of being troubled. Problems at school. His adoptive parents died, his mother quite recently in fact. Seems to me the media and certain politicians are overlooking the root causes and instead vilifying the NRA and the inanimate object based on knee jerk reaction and emotion rather than common sense and even headedness in a time of great loss.

    I am not willing to give an inch to appease the gun grabbing opportunists who exploit such tragedies for political gain.
    -They blame the NRA for the actions of a sick individual.
    -A gun for the deeds of a monster.
    -As if the gun did it, not Nikolas Cruz.

    There are well over 350 million guns in the US right now. If guns were the true culprit of violence, we’d all be dead already.

    Benjamin Franklin once said: “Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.”

    “Laws that forbid the carrying of arms only disarm those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes. Such laws make things worse for the assailants they serve rather to encourage than prevent homocides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man”
    -Thomas Jefferson

  7. Todd…

    What’s worse is the politicizing of the issue.

    This isn’t about one side versus another and when it’s put in those terms, nothing gets accomplished.

    There should be one side. Kids are killing each other and let’s figure out how to fix it.

  8. Bleed…

    I’m not sure bringing MORE guns into schools solves the problem. Nor do I think having armed guards or cops or vets in our schools to protect kids addresses the problem.

    Why the hell should a school need an armed guard? And why the hell are our kids shooting other kids?

  9. Al….

    Too much money in the gun lobby. Guns won’t be made illegal. It’ll never happen.

    That being said, we need to figure out how to fix the problem with that being understood.

  10. Dubs…

    Think there’s room enough in the White House for both of us and if so, will it be open bar?

    I’ll tell you what, whichever one of us convinces our secret service to do the sickest shit wins a prize.

  11. Yea, Bets…

    Teachers aren’t paid enough as it is and now they have to fear for their lives going to work.

    I went to public school in New York in the 70s. Shit was pretty dangerous back then and I remember guards or school employees that were there to keep the peace. But I don’t think there were ever armed guards.

    I can’t help but feel having armed security guards in our schools is defeatist but it helps, I suppose I’d be for it.

  12. Deac…

    I don’t own a gun and I never will. I have a baseball bat and if you wanna break into my house, give it your best shot.

    Besides, isn’t beating the crap out of an intruder trying to do you harm with a baseball bat far more enjoyable than just shooting him?

    I feel like I’m living in the fucking Hunger Games.

  13. lol, I’m all about the Benjamin baby.

    “Why the hell should a school need an armed guard? And why the hell are our kids shooting other kids?”


    But all we hear is, “We need to do something”.
    Well, having someone there to protect is doing something, no? Disarming those who didn’t break the law because someone else did is bassackwards, counter productive and never going to happen.

    I love listening to all these idiots on tv say we need to be like all the other countries that have gun control…As if that protects anyone…

    Take guns from law abiding citizens to end up like Sweden, rape capital of the world where public music concerts are no longer a thing? Like France where crime and violence are so bad that people are fleeing to safer areas and where they just arrested someone for cannibalism, while the victim was still alive? Or England, home of acid attacks and home invasion robberies (yes unarmed populace means burglars prefer they are home). How about Australia where the crime rate, including violent crime has skyrocketed after gun confiscation?

    The civilized utopia these talking head clowns pitch every time these things happen simply does not exist.

    There will always be psycopaths like this Cruz kid and humans will always be flawed. Adam failed Eve. Cain failed Abel. The FBI failed to react to all the warnings signs. The on-duty protector failed to protect.

    Sadly, unless we miraculously create a pre-crime division a la Tom Cruise in the movie Minority Report, events like this will keep happening no matter what we do.

    Guns and what to do about them is the wrong question IMO.
    I would ask,
    What’s wrong with certain human beings and what do we do about it?

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