original art by James Isenhower

original art by James Isenhower

I am stunned, angry and swimming in a profound sadness, and frankly I’m writing blind, hoping some answer will float to the surface. I find myself going back and forth between different emotions depending on what I hear being said or what I have read after the horrific tragedy in Las Vegas. I admit I am sitting here typing with tears in my eyes, and I can’t 100% explain why. First, you turn on the television in the morning and you hear these unbelievable stories of heroism and bravery that are coming out from that night. Then you turn to another channel or flip to your phone to look at Facebook, and you start to read the unbelievable Bullsh*t that seems to come out of people’s mouths when something like this happens. 

I am writing this on Tuesday Oct. 3rd, only two days removed from the Las Vegas shooting, and the main thing being discussed is whether or not there should be stricter gun control laws within this country.  Already people have turned their focus from the victims and are trying to get in their political points.  People against gun control attempt to turn the focus away from guns and onto other things that kill Americans as well. They point to the deadly consequences associated with drugs, cars, cancer, natural disasters and anything else they can think of to try to steer the conversation away from gun regulation.  No doubt, the NRA has already made calls to all their favorite congressmen urging them to hold strong in this time of tragedy, because darn it all, the people of this country have the right to bear arms.

In fairness, I do not know fully where I stand on this. Before someone calls me out, I do own three firearms. I have had a couple of them for years, and I have shot them only a dozen or so times.  I confess that they are beginning to make me more and more uncomfortable by the day. With each tragedy that happens and with each person that is just so damn insistent that gun regulation is not the problem, I can’t help but wonder – what or who is to blame? The only common denominator I see in all of these tragedies in the gun itself. One could argue it is the person holding the gun, but in each of these mass shootings it has been a different story and a different person. The only common thread throughout all of them is that they were allowed to freely purchase or own a gun with very little red tape to break through.

I do enjoy hunting. I cherish getting up really early with my dad, heading out to a spot in the middle of the woods and waiting for deer to come across our path. The thing about hunting rifles is they are not the types of rifles being used to murder mass groups of people, and rarely have I heard anyone from either side bring those up during a gun debate. By the same token, you rarely hear someone bring up shotguns, which are used not only for hunting but also for home protection. But for the life of me, I cannot think of any reason that an assault rifle or automatic weapon should ever be purchased by a person that is not in the military. In light of all of these tragedies, why are we so steadfast on keeping these killing machines in our homes?

If you have listened to our podcast, you have probably heard us say that we do not know all the answers, and that certainly rings true for this topic. But I want to ask you all a couple of questions, and it would be an honor if you would let me know what you think:

1.)    Do you believe there need to be stricter gun laws in this country?  Why or Why not?

2.)    Why do you think America seems to have a disproportionate number of murders by guns compared to other countries?

3.)    What, if anything, at this point could be done to try to eliminate these mass shootings and shootings in general?