The last time that I blogged about gun control, I told myself that it was the absolute last time that I was going down that rabbit hole, there being so many topics out there that interest me more than the stupidity going on in Washington, D.C. For that reason, along with a few other reasons that I shall not go into here, I felt that pouring yet more frustrated rhetoric, out into the blogosphere would be, simply put, pointless. But here I go again…
Personally, I do not have strong feelings about gun ownership or gun owners, per se, as I am not anti-gun. I do not, however, as of this writing, own any weaponry as there is nothing that I care to shoot. I gave up hunting animals at an early age when I discovered that I got little joy from killing them, and my fear of the human species has not yet ‘red-lined’ at a level that I feel the need to arm-up to protect myself and my family (naivety being akin to bliss).
I am well aware that many people hunt legally for sport, and people in remote areas often keep guns for protection from four footed vermin as well as two. Still others in urban areas feel the need for guns, for a variety of reasons, some of them valid, and others not so much. I have no quarrel with any of them. I would hope never to see the day that I could not legally purchase a gun in the U.S., should I want to own one. And I am not a gun illiterate. I know the difference between a pistol and a revolver, a breech loaded shotgun vs. a pump model, and I know that .40 caliber ammo is not as easily obtained as .45 caliber. But I also know one other thing about guns…they are damned dangerous.
In the hands of the homicidal, the suicidal, and the genocidal, guns are capable of inflicting great harm quickly. You need to know what you are doing when it comes to guns, so making certain that only the right people get to own them is really important. It is also really important that once the right people own them, they hang onto them, and they don’t peddle them to just anybody with a wad of cash. So it goes without saying that I was more than a little disappointed last week, when the gun control bill, proposed by President Obama (and backed by lots of other people , Democrats and Republicans alike), floundered like a sick panfish on the floor of the United States Senate.
“Well, I expected that to happen,” I said to my wife when I heard the news. “No blogging about gun control for me.”
“Why not,” she asked.
“Because the gun thing is a dead horse,” I said, “and nobody wants to continue to beat one of those. Then I read about Adolphus Busch IV.
Adolphus Busch IV, the brewing company heir, recently rescinded his membership in the National Rifle Association (NRA), thus inspiring me to write here again about guns and their control, or lack thereof. I mean, if a brewing company magnate has the moxy (not the word I really wanted to use, but you get the impression), to stand up to the National Rifle Association, then I owe the issue one more blog.
Mr. Busch recently renounced his NRA membership with a scathing letter to that organization that read, in part:
“I fail to see how the NRA can disregard the overwhelming will of its members who see background checks as reasonable.”
Perhaps if we had more gun owners of Mr. Busch’s mettle, some sanity might one day settle upon our Nation. Mr. Busch further noted that today’s NRA is quite unlike the NRA that he had joined back in 1975, an organization that was formed to protect the interests of hunters and gun owners. Today’s NRA, according to Mr. Busch, looks nothing like that, and has instead morphed into a special interest lobbying group for arms and ammunition manufacturers. His observation mirrors my own. As I recall the NRA of the late seventies, it did not wield the power it has today, and seemed to be primarily concerned with gun safety issues, like keeping hunters from accidentally shooting each other on hunting excursions. Or so it seemed.
This is all I have to say on this issue for now, and I will remain silent on gun issues henceforth. There are other BIG issues to address: more poetry in honor of National Poetry Month, giant snails are invading Broward County Florida, and Obama is hijacking an asteroid. Not to mention that I have found an issue upon which I completely agree with Republican Governor Rick Scott of Florida…need I drone on…