I didn't really follow the story closely yesterday about the Virgina Tech shooting. I guess it's because i've become so jaded towards violence in this country that i'm neither shocked, or concerned whenever I hear about it. Today, though, I read the full story about exactly what happened at VT. First, I would like to express my sincerest condolences to the victims of that tragedy and their families. What happened yesterday was a sick, twisted, and unacceptable act that cannot be justified by any behavior. There is never a good reason to go anywhere and just pull a gun on a bunch of people.
I've always been anti-gun, and when I hear about things like this it usually lights a fire underneath me. There are lots of problems with the gun laws in America, and yesterday 32 people had to die because of them. The shooter, it is said, had been suffering from depression and was taking medication to treat the condition. Yet, he was still able to purchase a 9mm Glock pistol. There are background checks that are conducted on people who purchase weapons, but obviously the checks are not effective enough to filter out those who have no reason owning a gun. Clearly these background checks MUST extend into medical records. I understand the patient/doctor privacy laws, but if people who have a record of depression and/or violence, doesn't it make sense to make these records available to respective background agencies?
I live in the South. I've heard every reason why guns need to be kept around. The most common reason being that it's important to keep a gun in the house to protect the family from any unwarranted break-in. I guess the thinking on that is when the high pressure situation of confronting a burglar, who most likely is armed themselves, arises the person who owns the gun will be able to aim steady, shoot accurately, or hope it scares the burglar into submission. Let's also assume the gun owner keeps all of his guns, fully loaded, in the bedroom. Our right to bear arms in this country is an embarassment. The arguments to keep the amendment around are weak. If we, as a country, want to put an end to violence like this then we MUST ratify the constitution to ban the ownership of guns.
But then again, by next week, everyone outside of Virginia will have already put this tragedy out of their minds. We didn't learn anything from Columbine. We won't learn anything from this.