The recent tragedy in Newtown, Connecticut is one of the most horrible in recent memory. The actions of that young man were as incomprehensible as they were inexcusable and we as a country need to learn from what happened to better protect ourselves and our children. What is even more inexcusable and, in my mind just as disgusting, is the way gun control advocates use this tragedy to support their agenda.
As the details unfold we are starting to see there was a lot of anger and hate in this young man. To be driven to shoot anyone 11 times, let alone a child, indicates this young man was feeling emotions no one reading this post has probably ever felt and hopefully will never experience. We don't know the relationship he had with his mother, whether he was told the divorce between his parents was because of him or anything about the family dynamics.
This is all irrelevant to the gun-control crowd and their fetish with anything high-powered. It was the guns, plain and simple. Not just any gun, but the 'assault rifle'. That is what set him off. Simple, isn't it? Unfortunately, in real life, things are usually not that simple.
We need to take issue with this young man's behavior, not the methods he used to carry out his deeds just like we would any other criminal. Killing is wrong, whether you use a gun, fly a plane into a building, set someone on fire with gasoline or run someone or a group of people over with a car. It is the killing that is wrong, not the methods employed.
It is the behavior and the cause(s) of that behavior that we need to be concerned with.
I was living on Long Island, NY when Colin Furgeson killed 6 and injured 19 on a Long Island Rail Road commuter train.
According to the testimony at the trial Ferguson selected a commuter train headed to Nassau County. Once the train entered Nassau, Ferguson began shooting, selecting specific white people to gun down and sparing others. The reasons for his selection of who to shoot and who not was never made clear.
As he stopped to reload his gun for the third time he was overpowered by three passengers and held down until the police arrived. He did not use an assault rifle. He used a pistol. Every single law enforcement officer that I have interviewed regarding this said that if there was just one armed person on that train things would have turned out completely different. Remember, he had emptied his gun twice and was reloading a third time before the passengers were able to overcome their terror and bum rush him. Had the people on that train be able to protect themselves (had their own pistol) my guess and the unanimous opinion of the law enforcement officials I spoke with is that he wouldn't have managed to reload once.
I own an 'assault rifle' for home defense, specifically to even the odds against the increasingly frequent armed home break-ins by multiple intruders. The rifle affords me protection from lunatics, in other words. Now, I am free to forgo gun ownership and wait for the police to arrive and save me. What usually winds up happening to people like that is the police simply gather evidence and notify the next of kin. Will I get to my gun in time? Who knows, but it is there and if I do get to it we now have a fair fight.