Friday, December 14, 2012

The Sandy Hook Shootings in Newtown and the Critical Mom

Is this a copycat killing?  We can't afford another one.
Would any of the founding fathers have written the words "You have the right to bear arms" if he'd known that semi-automatic guns would be invented?  You bet your life not.  Or that a young man who was a "socially awkward loner" with a "personality disorder" would so easily get and exploit these weapons to defend himself against his personal demons?  Common sense--a most uncommon asset--dictates that we lay down these "arms."  Anyone who can make money selling them says no, and so far American government goes along with that.
Why doesn't American law define "arms" in terms of 18th century technology?  Neither a blunderbuss nor a flintlock, two popular 18th century rifles, can fire more than once before needing to be reloaded.  If our constitution granted the right to bear ONLY these arms, the insane or high Adam Lanza could have been stopped before slaughtering 27 people, including his own mother.  Now is the time for the broadest possible measures to exert gun control.  Now is the time for the constitution to mean what it meant to the founding fathers.  But that America no longer exists.  Separation of church and state?  Look how far Rick Santorum got.  Equal rights?  Only if your income is over $200,000.  How far are we from the grim vision of America depicted by the brilliant Russian-American satirist, Gary Shteyngart in Super Sad True Love Story, in which the rich guzzle alkaline waters, dechronification treatments, and high fashion while the poor set up camps in Tompkins Park, starve, contract preventable diseases and get shot?  Watch the numbers of evangelical bible-thumpers who shoot abortion doctors grow.  Watch George Bush, junior, win voters by telling folks that "God wants me to run for president."  And watch Obama do nothing so far.  Now is the time for our president to take a stand on this breathtakingly important issue. 
Either that, or clear the malls--let's never go shopping again.  And the schools:  let's have universal home schooling.  At the very least, your kids would finally learn something.  Their very first lesson should present the United States Constitution, especially the Bill of Rights.  Have them read it, discuss it, and comment on it.  And then let them have a go at the newspapers.  After that, you can get into "appearance versus reality," noting, in all fairness, that no matter how much we pervert our basic rights and laws, we're still--marginally--better off than folks living in the totalitarian regimes of North Korea or the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt.  "Democracy," Winston Churchill remarked, "is the worst form of government except all the others that have been tried."  Are we still hanging on--by our fingernails--to democracy in America?  Or will yet another nut be able to exercise his or her right to "arms" and shoot up yet another school or mall or bus?


  1. I can't tell you depressed I am about this, as is everyone I know here in America. It's the intersection of mental illness and lack of gun control. But a scary thing was posted today in the Blue Review; its title is "I am Adam Lanza's Mother," and it's written by someone with a severely disturbed son. Apparently, if you read the hundreds of comments to this essay, there are MANY people with violent, disturbed children. They know to institutionalize them is the only way to keep others safe, but they don't want to do that... they love their kids, despite the nightmare they present to their siblings and others.

  2. I'll look for this and thanks. But it's the access to guns--not the mentally ill--that is the problem. Western Europe has its share of nutcases, but you have to have a permit to get a gun, and the nutcases don't pass review and don't get the permit.