Sunday, December 30, 2012

Happy New Year!

To our families, friends and readers comes this salutation.
May everything good grace your life,
And may health, wealth and well-being fill yours days!


Friday, December 21, 2012

The Obscenity Called the NRA

By Daniel J. Perin
Friday morning, just one week after the massacre in Newtown CT, while the nation prayerfully stood silent in memory of those lost, the NRA gave us their response to the gun violence raging throughout the nation.  Their answer:  Get more guns into the hands of the public.  Indeed, put armed guards at the door of every school In the country and preferably, arm every teacher as well.  “The only way to stop a bad man with a gun is a good man with a gun.” – Wayne LaPierre

Wayne LaPierre has proposed the most ridiculous, Ill conceived and outrageous plan that one can only consider an obscenity and insult to the parents, relatives and friends of those slain in Newtown, CT.

I am so angry and my eyes still tear-filled that I can hardly form an intelligent thought about this so-called “meaningful response” from the NRA.  Has this man no decency, no common sense at all?  As far as I am concerned the blood of those children and teachers is placed squarely on his hands.  Arming more people would have the same result as falsely calling “fire” in a crowed theater.

I have no compassion for this man, nor is there any way for me to understand the blind devotion to the Second Amendment, written when it took several minutes to load a musket between shots.  It cannot in any way be meant to cover ownership and misuse of 100 round semi-automatic weapons that fire shots faster than you can see them, let alone count them.  There is NO ARGUMENT that justifies having such weapons in the hands of ANYONE other than duly enlisted military or police personnel.   People asked to give such a reason have never been able to do anything but redirect the conversation to other issues.

If we cannot resolve the abuse of the Second Amendment, mark my words, the time will come that the public rises up en masse to rescind that amendment and construct meaningful statutes to replace it.  I would expect such new regulations would allow proper gun ownership following background checks for ALL purchases including gun shows and re-sales, registration of ALL weapons, and proof of safety training that includes proper safe storage.  Additionally, I would support very strong punishment in fines and possible prison for those who are found guilty of allowing their children access to weapons improperly secured in their homes.

I have friends and family members who own guns.  Personally, I don’t want any guns anywhere near me for any reason.  I am comfortable, somewhat anyway, with people owning guns if they have satisfied regulations currently in effect.  I see a reason for sports enthusiasts to have guns, but I’m not convinced that having a gun “for protection” makes the owner or his loved ones safer.  Statistics appear to favor those without guns in the home are safer. May be debatable, but I’ll go with it.

I will not simply try to repeat all the arguments here.  My purpose here is to indicate my anger about the less than meaningful response of Mr. LaPierre and the NRA when it comes to offering anything helpful.  I suggest it would be better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt.—Abraham Lincoln

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Words Are Inadequate But Here Are Some Anyway!

This is one of those times that words simply fail to take meaningful form in my mind, let alone find their way to the keyboard of my computer.  It is not that there are no words.  It is that they are inadequate to in any way convey the brokenness of our hearts as a result of a week of horror.

We have been here before.  This is just the current story. This is not really a strange situation in that respect.  What seems strange to me in the face of the constant barrage of shootings, whether in the case of individual street warfare, or mass events such as the Newtown, CT first graders, is that as a society we briefly mourn and then go on about our business.

Oh, there will be the usual point/counter point arguments presented about guns and our “right” to own them, but in the end it is most likely we will hide in the shadows of our fear to speak out and act in a responsible way to do anything to change our maladjusted mentality that accepts this stupidity.

Unfortunately, I just find myself getting angrier as I write these words.  That is what I mean when I say words are inadequate to convey my utter despair.  Anger, like grief, often tends to dissipate over time.  When that happens we return to our “normal” lives.   Normal seems to mean we can ignore doing anything about the “past.”  You know, the “past” that was a few days ago.  Not good enough. 

There is a societal sickness that pervades much of our land.  There are many aspects to that sickness—economy, social insecurity, family breakdowns, and more.  But there are lights that shine in the darkness of these horrific events.  There are those we call “heroes.”  There are always the “helpers” present.  Mr. Rogers, is credited with telling how his mother told him to “look for the helpers” when something terrible happens.  Thank God for those who rise to the occasion against all personal odds.

What about the rest of us?  I am not against gun ownership.  I am against stupidity, which I find rampant in many of the arguments supporting the ownership of weapons of mass destruction like the multiple round assault rifles.  The fear that government will take away your guns has led to a massive increase in gun sales.  Sales often spike following a tragedy for no other reason that there is a fear a new law will prevent you from buying a gun.  Get over it!  We are not going to change the Constitution.  We are probably not even going to deliberate about ways in which to protect those rights and at the same time remove unnecessary weapons from ownership.

I hope I am wrong.  But a society that has to be allowed to take guns into schools, libraries, national parks and almost every other public place is definitely lacking in common sense or personal security. My goodness have we returned to the wild west where we don’t feel dressed without our Colt 45 (or Glock) strapped to our side?  Sadly, I am afraid I believe the need for bigger and more powerful guns simply represents penis compensation.  Go ahead, “Make my day!”