Post 254: One year after Newtown…December 14, 2013

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.

Twenty-seven words. The same number as the number of innocent people who died in Newtown, Connecticut, one year ago today. Twenty children. Six school staff who tried to protect those children. The mother of a mentally unstable gunman.  Twenty-seven lives snuffed out in a shooting spree.

The gunman whose 2nd Amendment rights and weak gun control laws and enforcement, society’s poor handling of people in need of psychiatric help allowed him to become the agent of murder and mayhem, then took his own life.  Arguably, the world is better off for his suicide death, a 28th death by the same hand, that awful day. But we’ll never learn why he did what he did.

The nation was in shock, and the President took steps to establish a bi-partisan committee to develop a legislative response, the start of a solution to these all-too-common mass murders. Congress failed to pass the recommended changes. The families affected by the murder of their first graders were visibly stunned, saddened, appalled, amazed at the irresponsibility of Congress. Something needed to be done. Anything!

How many children need die before the nation’s legislators take effective, serious action? It’s a question that remains unanswered.

As awful as Newtown was and is, children continued to die in America in between Newtown and now, if not in multiple shootings in a few incidents: Does one child dead from gunshot stand as a “better” situation than 20 at once? Ask the mother of the one dead child. The father. The siblings. The grandparents. The neighbors. America, people! Ask America! How many children, people have to die before the gun culture and Congress recognize every death is a loss in incalculable possibilities, is unnecessary, has nothing to do with a “well-regulated militia” or a “secure free state”?

Want to see the results of nothing? “Mother Jones” makes it easy for you by bringing these photos and stories together in one article. View the photos and read the stories of 192 children 12 and under who died by gunshot (murder, accidental) in the year since Newtown, and ask yourself, again: How many children need die before the nation’s legislators take effective, serious action?:

December 15, 1791: In a bitter irony, tomorrow is the 222nd anniversary of the Bill of Rights. Of those 10 rights codified, the 2nd Amendment rights continue to be problematic in ways the people who wrote those murderous words couldn’t possibly have imagined. Of course, back then “well-regulated militias” of one didn’t go on murder sprees and kill 20 first graders, six school administrators, and their own mother.

7 thoughts on “Post 254: One year after Newtown…December 14, 2013

  1. I live in an area where many people hunt. Many people own guns who don’t hunt. It’s an extremely scarlet part of Republican West Nebraska. I don’t own any guns, either, having more sense than to think I could shot that person breaking and entering my home, let alone live with the blood mess haunting my mind the rest of my days. I don’t feel safer knowing there are people wandering around my state with concealed weapons (legal unless posted by the business or church that no concealed weapons are allowed in the establishment!).

    There was an incident in my town in 2012 where a young guy entered a local pharmacy and held the pharmacist hostage for 14 hours before he shot three lawmen (no deaths), then took his own life. Before taking the pharmacy, he’d murdered his father and, earlier, an acquaintance who made the mistake of showing interest in the gunman’s girlfriend. For all of this, he came from a decent family but had some emotional issues. Just the sort of person who should have access to guns, eh!? Thank you, 2nd Amendment.

  2. Ok now I understand the reason for your next post.

    I don’t own a gun. Never have. Never felt the need to. I feel pretty safe where I live and I’m not prone to being fearful. Not to say I don’t consider getting one from time to time.

    I won’t even consider discussing the purpose of the Second Amendment in the shadow of Newtown. I think it is safe to say that the founding fathers would be as appalled of Newtown as we all are.

    • Thanks! I doubt there are many like me in this part of America. It just makes no sense to feel there is no problem with almost 200 kids dying from gun violence after the shocking murder of first graders and the adults who died trying to protect them a year ago yesterday. I am less sympathetic to the mother of the murderer since she was a gun nut and didn’t have enough sense to keep the personal arsenal away from her mentally ill son: Live by the sword, die by the sword, or something like that. And she’d written him a check (before he killed her!) to buy a gun for his Christmas present! People are incredible sometimes.

    • Something is seriously pathetic about how we worship arms in this country but ignore the consequences of letting incompetent people (or children!) have access to them. Just the day before this, a toddler found a loaded gun (in Colorado). When his mother tried to get it away from him, it discharged and she was wounded in the leg (shattered femur). Her knothead ex-boyfriend had put he gun behind her bedroom door, where her kid found it. Fortunately, no deaths occurred, but the mother is hospitalized, and dealing with a long recovery after surgery on her leg to repair the damage. Someone should go to jail for this recklessness, but no charges have been filed as far as I know!

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