Gun Control in the USA: A Conversation

 

 

Editor’s Note/ Intro:

In recent months, we in these United States of The NRA have fallen victim to renewed violence and unspeakable loss of life at the hands of citizen gun owners. While the issue may seem clear cut to victims or observers, it is anything but. We at BTR will discuss and examine the opposing views facing Americans in coming weeks. The allegory in the first sentence, alluding to the NRA is not without purpose. It is beyond question that powerful lobbying forces influence, if not shape policy and lawmaking in the US. The question that is now arising, in the wake of a fresh round of record shootings, concerns a revisit to meaningful gun control, (and in turn lessened influence from the gun lobby).

There are a myriad of issues wrapped up in any look at gun control or legislation aimed at amending or even re-evaluating the second amendment. The rights of gun owners are, of course central to any conversation. As are the interpretations of the founding fathers.

“A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” 

Any discussion on gun control must start with a look at the framers’ meaning. This meaning that has been fought over for generations, and bought and paid for multiple times from both sides. This meaning that keeps rearing its ugly head with each successive mass shooting, or statistical look at gun related violence.

BTR is not a site devoted to politics, but politics do enter conversations regularly by proxy. This is unavoidable as politics invades nearly every aspect of life. We wish we could turn our heads and look the other way. However, we cannot. The BTR team is diverse and made up of caring Americans, ALL wanting a better society in which to live. We have writers with opposing viewpoints and various backgrounds. We will be presenting the opinions of our group here.

We hope to present this topic for intellectual discussion. There is an answer to the question of gun control in the United States. It may come from within, or it may be from learned scholars outside our borders. We welcome your input and comments as always.

First up is BTR writer Casey Martinez:

Hey. You. Yeah, you, the one reading this. Do you realize it is a very real possibility that you are moving towards the end of your life at this very moment? Do you understand that you sitting here, reading this, could be the very last time you read anything in your life? You know that head scratch you just did? It’s possible that is the last time you will ever scratch your head, absent-mindedly while sitting at your kitchen table or your desk, sipping whatever it is you’re drinking right now.

You know that cough you just heard from your spouse? That could be the last time you ever hear them cough. It could be the last time they cough, in your bathroom, in your bedroom, while they get ready. This could be the last morning they stand in front of your closet, trying to decide what they are wearing to work today. Today could be the day that you sit down and talk about your schedules over your morning cup of coffee together for the last time.

And your child? Today could be the last day you hurry them to brush their teeth and get their shoes on. Today could be the last day that you pack their lunch, kiss the top of their head and say “have a good day.” Today could be the last time you get annoyed with your spouse for not being able to find their keys, or misplacing their wallet. Today could be the last day of bumper to bumper traffic. Today could be the last day of unquestioned safety and security in your world. Because today is the last day of your illusion.

Virginia Tech. Newtown. Sutherland Springs. Columbine. Every single person who died in every single one of these shootings had absolutely NO idea they were about to die that day. The parents of those sweet little children had no idea that was the last morning they would ever see their child alive. There is a very good chance that a few of those parents snapped at their children that morning for losing their shoes or misplacing their backpack, and now they live with that stain on their soul. “Oh, God! The last time I saw him, I yelled at him for always making us run late!” Can you imagine that? Can you imagine grieving your child while also feeling guilt?

 

In Sutherland, none of those people knew. None of them had any idea. They got up that morning, dressed in something nice, and went down to church. Went to pray. For strength. For help. In Thanks. They probably planned to go out to lunch after, or meet up with family for Sunday dinner. None of them knew, as they walked into that church what would they would find was not absolution.

Those kids at Columbine. They had no idea. While they got ready that morning, rolling their eyes at their parents, rushing to get to class. They had no clue. They were thinking about prom, or college. They were making plans! They had no idea that their future had already been stolen from them. Their parents had no idea that they would never meet their grandchildren. They had no clue that was the last morning their hormonal teenager was going to drive them nuts.

You have no idea, when you wake up in the morning, that by the end of the day your world will be completely shattered. It is not the responsibility of the victims to know that.

It’s very easy to watch the news, watch these shootings play out and think, “There but for the grace of God, go I.” But, when you really think about it, when you really put yourself in their shoes and think, “This could be it. This could be the last time I drive my nine-year-old daughter to school. This could be the last time I have to rush her to brush her hair or grab her lunch.” And you look at your child, and you realize, any time you drop them at school, it could be the last time you tell them “I love you.” That’s when it hits you.

 

Every last one of those parents, every last one of those husbands or wives, they never had a clue. They didn’t see it coming. And neither will you.

 

 

 

 

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  • mm

    Casey Martinez is a popular Wrongful Conviction Advocate on youtube. A mother of 7 and veteran’s wife, she is a student of Criminal Justice with an emphasis on Crime and Criminal Behavior and a minor in Digital Forensic Technology. An author of historical fiction, research is her passion and her trademark.

  • Show Comments (2)

  • Donna Barton

    I have always watched your video’s and was looking forward to reading what your views are when it comes to gun control. I thought that is what the article was about, you mentioned that there is an answer to gun control. Well? The whole article was about how most people never think about there last moment to breath air. My views on gun control line up with the founding fathers, I believe the Constitution was and is the most important document to ever be written. The intelligence it took to write something that long ago that would have more impact now than when it was written is profound. Not one word needs to be edited or revised, it is perfect as it is. I can not believe how big the debate is on the issue. I do not think any change would change the outcome of any of the incidences. The drug laws has never slowed down drugs from being used or sold, and it would be the same with gun laws, and this is just common sense. I see people that advocate for more gun control, but they have body guards that are armed and can afford to have big high walls to protect them. How can you control guns when you can’t control people is what people should be asking themselves.

  • Nathan Little

    Dear Casey,

    I am a fan of your YouTube channel and have been since you started addressing the “Making A Murderer” case portrayed on Netflix. I too was curious to see what your viewpoint was on gun control in this country.
    I am very much aware that gun violence is an emotional issue. The fact that victims wake up never knowing their fate, especially at the hands of a troubled gun man for no obvious reasons, is horrible and unjust. But I think that what most people engaging in this debate fail to address is the fact that it is almost always a male that commits these atrocities. I think that the failure to address that fact, doesn’t help anyone get to the root of the gun violence issue. It is, in my opinion, too easy to forget everything but the tools used in the commission of these terrible acts of deadly violence. Rather than looking at the symptoms that precipitated the final act of a male committing murder on innocent and seemingly random human beings, we look at the tool being used. If we use your immersive language to describe the feelings of those close to homicide victims killed by explosives rather than gunfire, wouldn’t that fit as well?
    I think it’s most important to look at why these men use tools of death to do what they do when they kill innocent human beings, than it is to look at the tools themselves. But I think that’s where we as a society have failed many of our male youth. We’ve been oblivious to the signs where we start looking at the perpetrators of these deadly actions and try to intercept them prior to the execution of their ill intent. A generation of boys growing up with violence all around them. Physical violence from adults, classmates and other figures of authority. Many of them grow up believing that violence is the last resort to solving their problems but can quickly surmise that their problems are entirely too overwhelming and that they see no other way out. But rather than confiding in an adult they trust to help them, they believe they have to take care of things themselves, to grow up and be a man. It’s not too farfetched to think that anger is the quickest emotion to turn to in a situation where they are unsure of how to react. Especially when it involves people that they believe have wronged them so severely, that they think violence is the most appropriate response.
    Because technology has aided in creating an environment that’s not exactly conducive to making personal connections, it’s easy for young men to feel like they have no real human connections and perhaps they feel like they have no one to confide in, to bounce their ideas off of. I felt this as a young man 20+ years ago and I feel it now. Some of these young men grew up with violent video games and some have trouble understanding the difference between real and virtual. They have grown up with incredibly violent images. Images of war. A kind of dulling effect on their senses.

    The problem with the second amendment argument, in my opinion, is the lack of understanding of the time period wherein the amendment was created. It was so common for citizens to keep and bear arms that it was essentially an unwritten right. Accepted by all prior to the enumeration of the bill of rights. In fact, the second amendment wasn’t even the original second amendment. It was 4th on the original list of rights. At the time of the creation of the bill of rights, guns were a neccesity to hunt and provide food for your family. They were also intended to guard against the possibility of a tyrannical government. And that’s where most of my voice goes when it comes to protecting the second amendment. Do we need automatic weapons as citizens today? In militias, yes. For everyday use? No. But we don’t have automatic weapons being used in these attacks on innocent people. The majority of guns today are semi-automatic. And that term has been used by the media to incite fear and to unsinuate a machine-gun nature or capability. I think there are a lot of people who are worried about the destruction of their rights by the government, whether real or perceived. They don’t want to see the government take their guns away simply because of the actions of a few. They worry about a government registry of their guns because it can be used later as a list of guns to collect from legal owners. Now I know that that can be seen as conspiratorial thinking, but the fear is real for many. After all, many of these gun owners have seen the government, whether state or federal, overstep their bounds many times in their lifetimes. They have seen the constrictive creation of laws and are always aware that they could be the next target of such a law.
    A background check should absolutely be required to ensure that a weapon is not going directly into the hands of a “crazy” person, but even that security step can be side stepped through theft or straw purchases. Almost any person with a wish to commit homicidal actions can obtain a method to carry them out. Whether a gun or a pressure cooker bomb, homicidal people will find a way. We as a society need to be more vigilant in spotting potential threats before these attacks happen.

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