Today, I was moved by the testimony of former Representative Giffords, "Too many children are dying. Too many children." You owe it to this country to at least listen to that video (click the link).
I am a hunter. I grew up with guns, I still enjoy shooting, and I personally own a shotgun for that purpose. My own child went deer hunting just two weeks ago and I was proud of him. Most of my family and friends are gunowners and hunters as well, so they are likely to disagree with what I am about to say. So be it.
We need fewer guns. Because "too many children are dying."
That's the long and short of this. Too many children are dying. We must respond and there is only one reasonable path. We need fewer guns.
Guns beget guns beget guns and a society with more guns is not safer, it is more dangerous.
Not only are children dying from random acts of insanity at schools like those in Connecticut, Colorado, Kentucky, Virginia, and just about everywhere else ... but too many kids are killing themselves as well. There is too much unnecessary death and the always present tool seems to be the gun.
I work with schools. I am deeply saddened by what I have seen these last ten years. Now, armed police roam the halls between our classrooms. Children not only learn to read these days, they learn to live in environments constantly patrolled by gun barrels. They learn to live in fear. That should be embarassing to us as a country. Children are in the presence of guns more frequently in the United States than in any third world country. It is compulsory in the United States for kids to spend their days watched by guns. I am embarassed at that reality.
Now, serious people all over the country talk of arming principals or teachers. We should be disgraced at the thought. Anyone that advocates for giving educators guns but won't consider limiting assault rifles has a serious detachment problem from sanity.
Guns beget guns beget guns. There is no solution to more guns except for more guns. Someone did actually define that cycle as insanty, once. So, our current national policy toward guns and kids is definitionally insane.
Our poor schools do not know how to respond, except only to join in and try to stay ahead in this vicious cycle. I work with school leaders. I know what a difficult position they are in. So difficult, in fact, that reasonable school leaders have even started purchasing their own assault rifles for their office, so that in a shootout they will not be outgunned, I suppose. Where does this end? Metal detectors, surveillance cameras, police controlling our school hallways ... we have already given up so much that we cannot get back and for what? The children keep dying. Some cry out liberty and freedom in this debate, but where is our children's liberty? We have deprived them of their liberty, even of their lives, in our disillusionment that owning an AK makes us free.
I don't care whether guns kill people or people kill people or whatever nonsense cliche you want to throw around to avoid the painful truth. Dead kids lie in graves that should be playing in schoolyards. Far, far too many of them.
"Too many children are dying." We need fewer guns.