My most recent post linked to articles about careless gun discharges and law abiding gun owners becoming dangerous when they accidentally or purposely shoot someone. Again, I recommend reading the Kid Shootings blog for many more cases of children getting shot by an irresponsible adult or older child or by finding a gun and shooting him or herself or a sibling. And again I must recommend the Ohh Shoot blog for many more cases of accidental gun discharges and other senseless shootings. These are the facts. Neither of these blogs make anything up. They are reporting on real live cases that happen every day in America.
As I was finishing this post, yet another senseless incident of a law abiding gun owner shooting someone came to my attention. This one bears repeating as a pure unadulterated example of the fear and paranoia the NRA has sown now reaping death. How else can you explain a 75 year old Wisconsin man shooting an innocent 13 year old boy with no reason other than thinking the boy might have stolen $3000 worth of shotguns weeks before? This one is should scare the pants off of parents everywhere. So your child goes outside to get your garbage cans and is met by an older man with a gun who accuses him of stealing something with absolutely no evidence of such accusation. He shoots your son once in the chest and then once again in the back as the boy runs away. This is a heinous murder committed by a law abiding gun owner that should be prosecuted to the fullest degree. Thankfully, the man was arrested and there should be no excuses accepted. But this is the scenario the NRA sets up as justifiable. All you have to do is think someone has done something wrong and you can blow them away. From the article:
Do you think? Was there another way to deal with the situation? Of course there was. Was there even a situation? Guns are the most frequently stolen item in home burglaries. Someone must have known this man had a lot of guns. And now this man's guns are in the illegal gun market where people who shouldn't have them now do and more gun crimes may result as well as more innocent lives taken. Further, people without guns wouldn't shoot an innocent child for no reason. Even if there was a reason to be actually suspicious, can you just blow a child away? The answer is a resounding NO.The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports that Alderman Bob Donovan had breakfast with Spooner earlier in the day at a George Webb restaurant. Donovan said the man told him he had lost $3,000 worth of shotguns in a burglary this week, was frustrated with police and was dying of lung cancer."He seemed burdened, truly burdened," Donovan said. Spooner also said something about "there are other ways to deal with situations" the police couldn't resolve, Donovan added.
What the Stand Your Ground laws have accomplished is to convince armed citizens that anything goes. Conceal and carry laws have made people think that they need to be armed everywhere. Suspicion reigns. And then, as this article explains, when the citizens of Seattle are jittery about all of the recent senseless shootings, a jogger dressed in black clothing jogs by with a holstered gun because he is so paranoid about the recent shootings and people have to be reassured he means no harm:
The jogger is a law abiding permit holder. How can we tell the difference between who is law abiding and who isn't when there have been so many random shootings and so many people are armed? One armed citizen looks like another. Suspicion and fear rule. Innocent people are killed. People have guns around where they dont' even know they have them. Loaded guns are dangerous. They discharge when a bullet is in the chamber. Kids go outside to innocently get the garbage and they are blown away. People misplace their guns and someone dies. Purses are dropped in Starbucks and a bullet is discharged from the gun inside. George Zimmerman lies about his bail money after being released on bond after shooting Trayvon Martin. He has to return to jail as a result. Really? George Zimmerman didn't tell the truth? An innocent Honors student, just graduated from high school in Oklahoma is shot dead by a "mystery sniper" while riding in her boyfriend's car. A mystery sniper? A high powered rifle? Are we at war? What country are we living in anyway? This is insane. Why are we allowing this to happen? Where is common sense?“Seattleites, we are losing it,” Seattle Times columnist Danny Westneat wrote Thursday, a day after the cafe shootings. He told of an e-mail from Bush School — one of several schools that went into lockdown after Wednesday’s attacks — reassuring parents that the man seen in a black running suit with a gun wasn’t an attacker, just a jogger who wanted to be able to defend himself.“This is what it has come to: Jogging with your gun,” Westneat wrote. “But can you blame him?...We are a city on edge. A city now in full-fledged crisis. The mayor, the police and the feds need to quit bickering, sit down like adults — now — and hash out what, if anything, they can do. Because the people at this point are literally being caught in the crossfire.”