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Only You Can Prevent Mass Shootings

by Marvan Buren (Principles: Politics is a contact sport) - 1 year ago

We need to stop pointing fingers whenever a mass shooting occurs and look to what we, as freedom-loving Americans, can do to prevent them. Let's start by sharing ideas.

Whenever we see that another mass shooting has occurred, the immediate reflex is to blame someone else. The gun lobby is an easy target since guns and ammunition are so easy to purchase in America. When the shooting is an act of terrorism, the blame can be planted on those who favor immigration, or alternatively, if you are far left, you can blame America first for making enemies around the world as we promote our own interests.When all else fails, of course, blame the government. 

The blame game, of course, intensifies when a politician is the victim. When Democratic Representative Gabrielle Giffords was shot in 2011, right wing radio took the brunt of the vitriol because of their hyper partisan rhetoric. Now with the baseball practice shooting of Republican representative Steve Scalise, those same right wing radio hosts are more than happy to blame the left for the intemperate angry rhetoric which permeates social media attacking President Trump in particular and Republicans in general.

None of this serves any useful purpose. It is safe to say that there will continue to be mass shootings in America for the foreseeable future but there are things that each of us can do which can make a difference. The purpose of this discussion is to come up with ideas for what each of us can do. I'll start with a few of my ideas and then hopefully, you can add to the list.

First and foremost we need to recognize that mass shootings almost always involve three elements: mental illness, anger, and guns. Take away any one of the three and the danger decreases exponentially. This leads to the following ideas:

Pay Attention To The People You Know: Nearly every mass shooter had exhibited signs of mental illness well before they committed the act. This is true of acts committed by Muslims, Christians and Jews - whether or not the act was officially classified as terrorism.. Recognizing that someone is mentally disturbed in a way that could turn violent is an important first step and the only ones who can do it are the family and friends of that person.  Maybe you can encourage that person to get professional help.  If not, you can at least stay in touch to make sure the person knows someone cares. That alone can go a long way.

Report suspicious Activity; If you become really concerned about a mentally unstable person, then reporting that person to the police is the only alternative. If you learn that such an individual is acquiring weapons, reporting is the obvious answer.

Take the Politics Out Of Gun Policy Discuss gun policy with people who have different views. Wrestle together with the twin challenges of allowing people to protect themselves while keeping guns out of the hands of criminals and the mentally ill. Keep the discussion practical and avoid politicized terms like “assault weapons” and “Second Amendment.” Then, demand that members of Congress do the same. Above all, don’t let the perfect become the enemy of the good. We can’t stop all mass shootings but we can sure make them less likely to occur.

In the end, it's a choice that we have to make. We either work together to keep ourselves safe and our freedoms intact, or we let the government take away those freedoms in the name of keeping us safe.

Please help me to come up with ideas for how we can do this ourselves.  


Comments and Responses (3)

Reasoning used for ARGUMENTS presented
By  Jayef Kennedy - 1 year ago
Take the politics out of gun policy???? The Republican Party is owned and operated by the gun manufacturers. The only way to take the politics out of gun policy would be to take the Republicans out of Congress. Come to think about, that's not a bad idea. Count me in.
Discussion Leader's Response : This comment is interesting but not directly relevant. (It might be a good topic for a new discussion)
Discussion Leader's Explanation : Sorry, your suggestion is not serious so I can't give you credit. Republicans were not always controlled by the NRA and if enough public pressure by their constituents is applied, they could again begin to distance themselves. How does that happen? I say it happens by calling the NRA's bluff and focusing entirely on preventing emotionally disturbed people from getting guns. If they want to say that mental illness is the problem, not guns. then let's force Republicans to focus on mental illness. It would at least be a start.
General Comments
By  Facebook Commenter - 1 year ago
Guns dont kill ,, people kill . So many unhappy people over President Trumps win , , is this the disrespect every president should from now on expect #! If a demonrat is sometime elected , do they want republicans do the things they do with accepting that election ?
Discussion Leader's Response : This comment is interesting but not directly relevant. (It might be a good topic for a new discussion)
Discussion Leader's Explanation : What was it that Donald Trump said? If Hillary Clinton wins then the only way people are going to be able to keep their guns is if the "Second Amendment People" took matters into their own hands. The threat of killing a Democratic President has already been made - by our current President. The people of this country must all say NO! to this dangerous nonsense just as Bernie Sanders did in his statement condemning the attack. You yourself have also become a part of the problem by referring to Democrats as "demonrats." It is this dehumanizing that makes it that much easier for a disturbed individual to take that extra step into the kind of murderous rage that led to the Steve Scalise shootings. Both sides must stop it and, like Sanders, call out their own supporters when they do it.
Reasoning used for ARGUMENTS presented
By  Facebook Commenter - 1 year ago
Violence is an unavoidable occurrence in life. You can neither legislate it out of existence nor can you limit it by taking away an object. The reality is that anyone is capable of anything at any moment given the right circumstances and opportunity. That's way history teaches us, at least. For those who lack the initial spark there's always a catalyst that affords them the conviction to lend their support of violence. Especially, since it provides the convenience of plausible deniability claiming they weren't directly involved. Guns aren't the issue neither are the bullets but if we are to assign blame then demographically progressives produce the highest percentage of personal violent action against others. Mass shootings in the US are committed by democrats or their children. Their political system is one of dissent at all costs and has drifted towards socialism for far too long. The very socialism responsible for 100 million deaths in the 20th century. The gander follows the goose
Discussion Leader's Response : This comment is relevant to the discussion. (Commenter's rating is increased.)
Discussion Leader's Explanation : Thank you for sharing your thoughts but I have a couple of factual disagreements. I would argue that economic status is far more important than politics. Crime is high in the poor inner city areas where most people are Democrats. However, it is also high in the poor rural areas where most people are Republican. I would also challenge your categorization of the 20th century wars being caused by socialism. World War I had nothing to do with socialism and everything to do with a corrupt and incompetent aristocracy - just like most European wars dating back 1000 years. As to the Nazis, yes the word "Socialist" is in their name but the only "New World Order" they wanted was one controlled by Germany. Hardly socialist in the classic sense. I do agree, however, that Socialism taken to its' extreme in the USSR and China was responsible for the worst mass murder of all times. We must fight extremes in governments just as we must identify and prevent extremes in human behavior.