There was a time when I wrote a much more political blog that has since ceased to be (Parsonage Life). Since then, my web interests veered in more spiritual directions. I felt that the world had plenty of blogs in which folks spouted off their beliefs spontaneously and sometimes without adequate forethought. I didn't want to be like that. So with Burbania Posts I have tried to keep things more thoughtful, perhaps, but certainly less political.
However, I do feel right now, like something needs to be said about gun control in the wake of the still-developing story in Newtown Connecticut. No. It is not too soon.
I realize that there are folks who like to talk about how "guns don't kill people" claiming that "people do". However, that is half the story. The fact is that people kill other people with guns. Guns are more efficient than other methods. They are fast. They are easier in many cases to conceal. If you want to kill a whole lot of people at once... You use a gun. There are other ways, of course, but most of them are regulated or outright illegal to own. What happened today (and what has happened in numerous other places) was possible because of the national permissiveness around firearms.
That needs to change. We need to change the culture of weaponry in the United States. We need strict regulation. No half-steps, either.
Part of the cultural issue, in my opinion, has to do with a misplaced sense of religion. There is a segment of our society (a well-funded segment to be sure) who sees guns as icons of our national religion. They see the Second Amendment as scriptural and unchanging. To them it is a bulwark ensuring the existence of their hobby and their right to--in their minds--protect a nation from whomever they see as an enemy. Some folks even think of it as a sort of crime-prevention technique and wish more people carried guns around. The fact is, they would save more lives if they carried portable defibrillators.
None of this gun culture makes sense in a rational world. More guns on the street do not prevent more gun crime. They just don't. Like the Bible, the Constitution is open to interpretation as we encounter situations that the writers of those documents never anticipated. Sorry, its just a fact. We--liberals and conservatives--do this all the time with the Bible. The Second Amendment certainly isn't a holier document than that. Finally, guns are not holy relics. They are machines that cause death. That is their job. That is their function. There are plenty of dangerous things that we as citizens are not allowed to own unless the government has given us special permission. Guns are dangerous things and should be tightly regulated. This isn't a video game. Their impact is permanent.
That is all I have to say right now. I hope that some of our political leaders are able to shake off the always-attractive NRA money and stand up for regulation and--frankly--for reason and sanity in a time and on an issue that could use some strong, sound leadership. I am heartbroken thinking of the victims of today's shooting. I cannot imagine how the families and friends of these children and teachers must feel. I find myself praying for them...constantly. This situation is ugly and tragic and preventable. I also pray with all my heart that we get our acts together to ensure that this doesn't happen again.