Today: Jun 17, 2024

Gun control legislature pass

Photo Courtesy | kevingilmour.net

Ryan Ianni – Staff Writer

Have you ever fired a gun? I have. It can be exhilarating, empowering and a massive adrenaline rush while watching those rounds explode into whatever target you’re firing at.

I think of myself as someone who loves adrenaline, and squeezing the trigger of a weapon definitely fulfills that need. However, at no other time in my relatively young life have I ever seen a flagrant and heated debate regarding anything and everything to do with the use of guns in this country.

On Dec. 14, 2012 a mentally unstable 20-year-old boy opened fire on an elementary school in Newtown, Conn., murdering 26 people, 20 of whom were children under the age of eight.

This wasn’t just one of the worst school shootings, it was one of the worst mass murders in this country’s history. In the aftermath of the horrid chaos that was Adam Lanza’s rampage, there has been one topic on the minds of citizens, politicians and everyone in-between: gun control.

Photo Courtesy | kevingilmour.net
Photo Courtesy | kevingilmour.net

The Second Amendment to the Constitution of the United States says, “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.”

Some people take the absolutist perspective on this, meaning when it says it shall not be infringed, it means just that, with no room for debate. What I believe, and what I think is most reasonable, is that the amendment is open to interpretation, as well as many of the amendments to our Constitution.

When this document was created, flintlock pistols and blunderbuss muskets were the extent of firearms that could be used in battle, or for any other means. These were weapons that took a minute or two to load a single shot, and were wildly inaccurate.

I am of the genuine opinion that our forefathers did not have 30-round automatic weapons in mind when they ratified the Second Amendment. How could they? And how can any present generation possibly fathom the weapons of the future? It is all fantasy and guesswork.

The point is this, since the events of Newtown, legislation passed for the state of Connecticut, which now makes it the most restrictive state on the purchasing and owning of firearms.

My response: damn right! Loopholes in the system, which made purchasing guns online or at gun shows, have now been tightly restricted and background checks have become universal and much more dense.

Much to my chagrin, I can’t seem to go on Facebook or any other form of social media without being bombarded by photos, statements, etc. of people expressing their outrage over this.  I am just always at such a loss for words when I see what seems to be pure fanaticism over owning a rapidly repeating tool capable of ending life so quickly.

If I had to clearly and concisely present my own point of view it would be this: I have no issues with citizens owning hunting rifles, shotguns, handguns, etc., the issue that crazes me and imbues me with absolute disgust is why people who are not working in some capacity of government or law enforcement feel the need to own an automatic weapon.

What purpose does it serve? If it truly is for protection, why do you need 30 shells to protect yourself? The idea does not resonate with me, and I see no validity in why any private citizen should or would need an automatic weapon.

I don’t hate guns. I even have the suspicion that in later life I may own one, but the issues that are so vigorously up for debate at the moment have to do with the acquisition of guns and the limitation of magazine capacity.

If the deaths of 20 innocent children isn’t enough to rally people to some kind of bipartisan understanding of limiting access to weapons, then the country is at an impasse that will never be broken.

I am not confident that cooler heads will prevail, but hopefully the powers that be can come to some sort of grand unifying compromise to create the necessary laws to regulate the sale and usage of weapons.

Do not be fooled into thinking that another Newtown won’t happen. Without question it will, but we need to do anything and everything in our power to make sure that it’s as preventable as can possibly be.

A father of one of the victims of the Sandy Hook shooting spree spoke up after the tragedy, “You hear about these kinds of things, in this town and that town, until one day it’s not some town, it’s yours.”

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