Let me just start by saying that I've used a shotgun a few times in my life, taking out clay pigeons for target practice. I have to admit it's fun, exhilarating and addictive. I know a few people who've been to the States, visited a firing range and had a go at various exotic weapons, the kind of which The Terminator would be at ease using. I'm sure it's just as enjoyable, if not more.
Yet again, the availability of guns and the whole issue of gun control has hit the spotlight thanks to another horrific shooting in the US. I'm amazed at how a section of the American populace continues to argue that limiting access to firearms would not reduce these tragic events.
The case for gun control seem pretty sensible to me – I don't have to write about the main points, Australian comedian Jim Jeffries does a good job here:
Warning: contains swears
This video makes an equally powerful point about the danger of guns (especially the fact that it's not just about lunatics going on a killing spree that is the problem):
As someone coming from a nation where guns are hardly anywhere to be seen, this whole situation seems a bit bonkers. The Dunblane massacre was Britain's wake-up call to guns and led to tighter controls. A similar incident in Australia led to the same kind of response. I just don't get how the NRA lobbyists and anti-gun control community are so
immune to the atrocities committed on a regular basis across their
country. Ricky Gervais had something to say on Twitter and got the usual backlash despite being entirely rational and intelligent in his arguments.
As I said at the beginning of this post, shooting (as in, target practice or hunting - not innocent people obviously) is an enjoyable activity just like sailing, gardening or golf are enjoyable. Why can't the pro-gun people just admit that? They love it and get a thrill out of it and they'll be damned if anyone is going to interfere with their enjoyment.
So, the reason why they lobby for things to stay the same is the simple fact that they won't let the slaughter of innocent men, women and children get in the way of their fun.
And that is truly heartbreaking.