Dead kids sure are a bummer but….

I know the title is rude. It appears to be insensitive. Maybe even shocking.

But I honestly don’t think I’m the one being insensitive and shocking here.

I’ve been sitting here in Japan since the Sandy Hook tragedy in Newtown, Connecticut on December 14th, trying to imagine how a typical gun owner would complete that sentence.

“Dead kids sure are a bummer but you know what’s a real bummer? Not being able to go to a gun show and buy anything I want by slapping some cash on the counter.”

“Dead kids sure are a bummer but I’d really be bummed out if I couldn’t own 57 handguns, shotguns, assault weapons and use hollow-point bullets.”

“Dead kids sure are a bummer but can you imagine what a bummer it would be to have to put a new magazine in my AR-15 after getting off only 20 rounds?”

“Dead kids sure are a bummer but there’s no way I’m going to take classes in gun safety or have some punk bureaucrat come around every year to check up on me.”

What is a typical gun owner willing to give up so that any one of the the victims of the Newtown massacre whose photos appear in this article would be alive? And what is so important to a gun owner that the lives of these people, and the other thousands who are killed by gunfire every year, can be so easily dismissed?

Truth is, I have no idea why I’m even writing about this. Because trying to get significant changes in our attitudes about guns really isn’t about laws and regulations. It’s about becoming sane again. And I don’t see that happening.

Here’s how the gun-loving members of the American public responded to Sandy Hook: “Shock figures show buyers are racing for firearms in Sandy Hook school massacre state” and “Gun enthusiasts pack shows to buy assault weapons“.

I love this:  “Gun backers want to arm schoolteachers

My wife came up with this one:  BulletBlocker, ‘Bullet Resistant Products’

Bulletproof backpacks for children?  Is it just me or does anyone else see something wrong with this picture?

I understand the powerful appeal of guns. Maybe not as intensely as the gun nuts out there but I do understand. I even understand the need for the latest and greatest of everything. We’ve been conditioned to want to own the biggest, the baddest, the best. We just can’t fall behind, you know. “Damn! My next door neighbor just got an AR-59 MICW. What if we get into an argument over how high to trim the hedge? I’ll be outgunned!”

Okay. I know I’m rambling. I’m not being coherent or rational.

But the truth is, none of the discussions about guns and gun control are remotely coherent or rational. We can nitpick over the details of gun regulation but frankly the whole discussion is so far out off the edge, it’s like a conversation in an insane asylum between Napoleon and Jesus about what they should do with Elvis over there in the corner to keep him from singing “All Shook Up” during arts and crafts.

Yes, it’s that bad.

It’s pure insanity.

It’s pure insanity because when people flock to gun shows to buy more guns after a tragedy like this, it’s akin to a lung cancer patient spending his life savings on cigarettes and giving them to all his friends and relatives.

It’s pure insanity because not even the simplest, most sensible, least intrusive limitations can get through Congress.

It’s pure insanity that we can’t even ban weapons which have no other purpose than killing and killing fast, ones like the semi-automatic rifles used in so many recent gun massacres.

I got a Tweet from Yoko Ono a few days ago. It said … “Over 1,057,000 people have been killed by guns in the USA since John Lennon was shot and killed on 8 Dec 1980.”

Which brings me to the way I would complete the sentence.

“Dead kids sure are a bummer but we’ve gone completely insane, so even if we shed a few tears, we really don’t care deep down inside where it counts.”

[ Insert prayers here for the America which is being lost, for the children who are being abandoned, for the death of the American Dream. ]

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