Umpqua; Another Firearm Tragedy


On Thursday morning, thirteen people were killed and more than a dozen others were wounded when a lone gunman decided to shoot up the Umpqua Community College in Roseburg, Oregon. The shooter died during an exchange with police and now we all mourn and wait for the next tragedy.

Gun violence is on the rise all over the world, but nowhere so much as in the United States. The reason for the majority of fatal and near fatal shootings no longer follows the train of thought (purported) responsible gun owners swear by. Owning a firearm to protect your self, family and loved ones, is a just reason-but the majority of recent tragedies show none of that logic. Accidental discharge appears to be a leading candidate. Toddlers grabbing a handgun and blowing away a sibling, naive to what the thing is capable of. Another front runner as of recent is the insanity issue. Some person goes off the deep end and slaughters a bunch of innocent people. These scenarios show no logical pattern of thought; they just seem to ‘happen’.

President Obama was visibly upset with having to face the public once again and give his synopsis of a tragedy that faces the nation. “Somehow this has become routine,” he said from the White House. He called once again for a change in gun laws and once those words were uttered, a big chunk of Americans lost focus on the problem at hand…a great many Americans are tense whenever politicians begin mumbling hints about changing gun laws. It’s probably part of our country’s heritage, to shake your fist at Government and demand the right to have a weapon. Things happen fast out there on the mean streets and no one wants to be without some protection from a bad situation but what do we do about someone crazy enough to gun down others with no concern of their own life? Vice President, Joe Biden, gave his comment on the matter during a conference in New York.
“There’s the ability of the government to limit the type of weapon available. And although we don’t have enough information for me now to comment on the specifics, my guess is — I’m prepared to bet you — that it was a semi-automatic weapon or an automatic weapon.
Biden’s comments reek heavily of a gun law platform to pass against auto and semi-auto weapons-which is fine for him to campaign on, but I think he and the President should look to other means to work against these tragedies. Taking away semi auto weapons will not slow down the mind of someone who’s become so insane that they would shoot down innocent people. For one thing, most people that intent on destruction will find a way to convert a weapon to fit their needs. Tim McVeigh found a way to do it with a bunch of fertilizer. Changing gun laws will not be the end-all to this problem; as I stated earlier, we still have the ‘accident’ factor to deal with. There is no intent from the guy cleaning his gun and having it discharge, or what about that idiot who shot off his own dick when trying to buy a gun? Accidents will happen. At one point in history, people agreed on safety issues for cars and passed bills to have seat belts put in cars and toddler seats for infants. Vehicles are death machines but we all came together and felt if you passed tests to prove you could drive and stay within the confines of safety laws, you could legally drive a motorized vehicle. We could do a better job at coming together to define gun laws that both sides of this issue can live with. Outright abolishing weapons will never happen, but if we slow down the flow and make people accountable for actions of their firearm, that might be a way to approach it.

Another thing we need to look into; recent studies indicate a lot of shooters go to monstrous depths because of alienation and shame. Alienate someone enough and let them live inside a world of violent video games they can control from the privacy of their own home, mixed in with a bit of Rush Limbaugh and a nearby gun store…yeah, I think you will definitely cultivate some basket cases. Let’s all try a bit to work against that alienation and let people out there know that we are all struggling to get through the day. Let’s drop the habit of shaming individuals who don’t agree with you or adopt a different lifestyle than yours. Shooting someone because they don’t believe in the same Divine One you do has never been a good thing. Sexual preferences are nothing to pull out a gun over. We need to stress and show more acceptance of one another and remember that petty problems we have no control over will always be a part of life. Frustration brought about by our laws and governing representatives, the crooked nature of those left too long in positions of power; we can combat those problems via the voting booth.

Enough on this issue for now. Now is a time to grieve and pray (if you pray) for those survivors and loved ones taken from our world in Roseburg, Oregon. Another shooting will probably come along before long and we can only hope that day doesn’t come.

Welcome to the Church.


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