Can we admit yet that it’s not the weapon?

Late last week a high school student was fatally stabbed when she rejected an invitation to the prom.  So far, reports suggest the girl’s killer was an ex-boyfriend.  He took out his rage in the populated hallway of hos school early in the morning. I suppose I could make a snide remark about needing new knife regulations, but I wont.

I don’t know what else can be said. At what point will it be obvious that the inanimate weapon is not the issue. Harken back to the Cliven Bundy armed standoff with federal authorities. In that case both sides were heavily armed yet not a shot fired. If firearms were as inherently dangerous as anti-gun activists claim, how did anyone make it out of that situation unscathed? How does anyone make it out of a gun show?

It should be glaringly obvious by now that the problem lies within the human heart.  An evil person will commit evil. A good person, no matter how heavily armed, will steer clear of evil.  This murderous teen was intent on getting a yes, otherwise there would be blood.  He did his damage with a blade not a bullet, yet all the arguments used against guns should apply here as well.

If we ignore the true problem we’ll never solve it.

Comments

  1. Yeah,but… if you can’t blame the weapon, then you would have to *gasp* hold people responsible, and that also means examing just why someone reaches a point that they think it’s okay to kill someone because they didn’t get their way. I don’t know what this says about how high school “culture” has changed, but a person I knew who got a “no” from his girlfriend didn’t harm her. He committed suicide. Granted, it was a marriage proposal, not a prom date (we don’t do proms in Canada, though I think that’s what our grads are now being transformed into). When my SIL was going through high school (the same one my husband and I went to, but 8 years later), attempted suicide was the manipulative method of choice. Mondays, it was a thing for girls to show off the bandages on their wrists, having cut themselves in response to being grounded for the weekend (usually for things like excessive drinking and partying). It was something they were proud of, because they “got back” at their parents by doing it.

    My in-laws ended up sending my SIL to a Catholic boarding school in the city to finish high school. My SIL now says that probably saved her life.

    I can’t help but wondering, though; the boy who stabbed his ex-girlfriend; was he on, or ever on, psychotropic meds? Boys are far more likely to be drugged for ADD/ADHD (among other things) than girls, and it starts at very young ages, including toddlers.

    • Kunoichi

      Not all the details about possible mental illness or antidepressants have come out. He is 15 I think so I’m assuming that if he was on meds it will be announced that he is 15 and his records wont be released. If he wanst, they’ll probably say so. Currently he is being held on a 15 day psychiatric evaluation.

      We shall see. Obviously this upcoming generation is laking social skills and are not able to cope with disappointment or personal tragedy. Gee…wonder how that happened.

  2. Wow! Do you have some kind of psychic connection with Kunoichi? Cool!

    I like your comment about gun shows. Where are there more guns in one place with “gun nuts” present and how often are they the site of gun tragedies? Do we even need one had for counting?

  3. paynehollow says:

    John…

    If firearms were as inherently dangerous as anti-gun activists claim, how did anyone make it out of that situation unscathed? How does anyone make it out of a gun show?

    Well, I’m not an anti-gun activist, so I wouldn’t claim that guns are inherently dangerous. I know of few folk who would make that argument. I’m sure they’re out there, but I don’t know them.

    John…

    It should be glaringly obvious by now that the problem lies within the human heart. An evil person will commit evil.

    Indeed, that is part of it, I suppose. But for the most part, those who kill others are not obviously “evil,” they’re just people, the same as the rest of us, but something snaps in them and they feel compelled to commit violence, perhaps even justified. For some of them, it’s a mental illness that complicates matters. For some, it is perhaps the way they were raised (or not raised) that let’s them feel violence is an acceptable answer.

    Regardless, the point stands: People who are wanting to and committed to committing acts of violence will often find ways to do so, with whatever weapons are at hand. I don’t know of anyone who would disagree with that. The thing is, we acknowledge that some people will sometimes want to commit violence, we are just looking for reasonable ways to limit the harm they can do. And let’s face it: Much less harm will be done with a hammer than with a machine gun. The odds of a group of people subduing a hammer-wielding maniac are much greater than a machine gun wielding maniac.

    I think people of good faith can disagree on where and how to draw lines about what tools, weapons and/or explosives are too violent to go unregulated, but surely we can agree that some lines are reasonable.

    ~Dan

  4. To date, I am unaware of anyone claiming a right to own explosives under the 2nd Amendment. I am unaware of anyone claiming that they have the right to own and/or carry explosive devices for the purpose of protecting himself, his loved ones or his property. Bringing up explosives in a gun rights discussion is dishonest.

    I wonder what the odds are of a person with an automatic weapon going mad and using that weapon to vent his rage and how far he’d get with sane people who are armed and capable? That is to say, if automatic weapons were available to the general public, then surely there would be other armed citizens, likely wherever the maniac runs wild.

    When we consider the numbers of people who own firearms and compare that to the number of people who commit crimes with firearms, particularly the numbers of people who go nuts and shoot at people, we can easily see that there aren’t that many people who go nuts and seek to shoot people.

    We can also see that when another person NOT insane, is present and armed, the maniac often dies without killing too many people. Where no one else had a firearm, the body count was high and increasing until others with weapons approached.

    I say all this submit that limiting the responsible law abiding citizen due to the actions of criminals and the mentally disturbed has been proven folly. The best protection against criminals and the mentally disturbed with weapons, is responsible law abiding citizens with weapons.

  5. Dan,

    So, you know of people who claim guns are “inherently dangerous,” but you’re “sure they’re out there,” although you “don’t know them.” Yep. Makes sense…

    Anyway. I’m wondering why we’re forced to play these games with you. You know damn well that the most popular anti-gun argument is that “guns kill people.” To me, that’s the same thing as saying guns are inherently dangerous. You know that’s the argument and that it’s foolish emotionalism, hence your reluctance to admit its popularity with your liberal pals.

    And Dan, I’m willingly to bet a maniac in a 4×4 pickup can do just as much damage with his Chevy as the maniac with his machine gun. Also willing to bet that the maniac with bleach, amonia, and drain cleaner can do pretty substantial damage as well. So, where do we draw the line, Dan? What else should we ban or regulate because a iny minority sought to do harm?

  6. paynehollow says:

    It seems to me that this is a good question that people of good faith can disagree upon, Terrance. We draw the line at harm, of course, and at reasonable expectation of harm. We also can take into consideration an item’s daily usefulness/needfulness vs the potential for harm, I think.

    We don’t limit explosives because explosives, just sitting there, are likely to harm anyone, but because their daily needfulness is not so great and the potential for misuse-leading-to-great-harm is great.

    Still, those with a need for explosives can get them by establishing need and following the guidelines to acquire them.

    We don’t limit hammers at all because, even though there is a potential for some harm if misused, their daily needfulness is pretty great.

    We do limit auto usage (to those who’ve acquired a license, to those of a certain age, to those who’ve demonstrated proficiency in a test) but not unduly so because we’ve deemed their needfulness to be pretty great, even though the chance of harm from misuse is pretty great.

    So, we establish limits to items with some potential for harm on that continuum, it seems to me.

    Hammer – some potential for harm, but great needfulness: No limits.
    Car – some great potential for harm but also great needfulness: Some limits
    Explosives – some great potential for great harm but some needfullness: pretty strong limits.

    Guns are somewhere on that continuum, it seems to me, closer to car usage than explosives.

    Is there anything unreasonable about this?

    ~Dan

  7. paynehollow says:

    Marshall…

    The best protection against criminals and the mentally disturbed with weapons, is responsible law abiding citizens with weapons.

    I would posit that the best protection against unwanted violence is probably something more like having good people present and in numbers. Criminals are a cowardly lot, as the Batman noted, and don’t tend to do violence in front of others. So, if we had more people out of their cars and homes and walking, sitting on their front porch, being a good neighbor, then that would limit the chances of criminal violence in public.

    As to defenses against the very rare occasion of a mentally ill person using a weapon to cause harm, I’d say the best defense is good access to and promotion of good health and mental health care.

    I don’t have a problem to people having access to guns, with some reasonable limitations/regulations (like with cars or explosives), but I don’t rest as much confidence in guns to protect as you do.

    The question, it seems to me, are what are the reasonable limitations and regulations?

    ~Dan

  8. Dan,

    All of the items mentioned are useful for other things. Guns, for example, are used for hunting, sport, personal defense, and things that have nothing to do with coldblooded killing. But all of the items mentioned will cause harm, including guns of course, and should be expected to do so if found in the hands of those with evil intentions.

    Like John said, it’s the person, not their weapon of choice.

    • Guns are not designed or manufactured for the putpose of murder just like cars are not designed for mowing down pedestrians.

    • Growing up on the farm, surrounded by farms, everyone had guns. They were just another tool – though more fun that most. As a child, I used to enjoy taking the old .22 bolt action rifle out and try and shoot crows or magpies (got a crow once; neither the dogs or cats would eat it, so I never tried again. Magpies are much smarter and would string me along! *L*). Loved it when we got a semi-automatic. Made life much easier. My favourite, however, was the WWII Polish sniper rifle my brother gave me as a wedding gift. I do regret getting rid of that, but we couldn’t afford the long gun registry costs.

      Basically, we and everyone around us had at least a .22 rifle, a shotgun and a hunting rifle powerful enough to kill a deer or a moose. The .22 was usually kept handy to protect our animals from coyotes, bobcats, or other predators (we avoided actually killing any of them, unless absolutely necessary), plus for the occasional prairie chicken or Canada Goose for the pot. We also used it to kill larger farm animals slated for the freezer. The shotgun and higher powered rifle tended to only come out at hunting season (mmm… venison…), though once in a while they came out for safety, such as the year forest fires in Ontario were bad enough to drive bears into our area.

      With all those guns around, the only gun related deaths were suicides. There were far more suicides and attempted suicides that did not involve guns at all (males seemed to prefer CO poisoning; females seemed to prefer wrist slitting. No idea why that would be). The only murders (rare as they were) did not involve guns, and I know of only 1 death involving a gun related accident where someone killed themselves doing something incredibly stupid. Violent incidents were more likely to involve knives, blunt instruments or farm machinery.

      Then I moved to the city, where hardly anyone had guns, and there was much more gun violence. :-/

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