Monday, June 16, 2014


Since the killings at Sandy Hook Elementary, there have been seventy-four instances of shots being fired on school grounds or buildings here in the United States. Land of the free. Home of the brave. And regular acts of random violence at our schools. I suppose that "random" is kind of a misnomer, since the "regular" that precedes it kind of trumps that whole idea. In the past year and a half, that works out to be just a little less than one a week.
A lot of people will be happy to point out the sad irony of all of this killing taking place in areas that have been designated as "gun-free zones." A fat lot of good that distinction makes. What possible good does it do to hang signs outside schools, warning bad guys away with their weapons? Those who patrol the comment section of news stories to hammer on this sad irony are also happy to point out that they guy who rolled through Isla Vista, California started his spree not with guns but knives. And he ran down people with his BMW. Why don't we have dedicated no-cutlery and foreign car zones? If people were getting attacked on a weekly basis with knives and foreign cars on school grounds once a week, I would happily support such legislation.
Ultimately, it's not worth arguing with the scary folks out there who insist that the shootings in Newtown, Connecticut were part of some arcane oligarchical conspiracy. It's not about keeping kids safe. It's about keeping guns safe. Since the start of 2014, there have been thirty-seven school shootings here in the land protected by the Second Amendment. I don't pretend to have an answer. Maybe we do need "good guys with guns" on every street corner. Adding more guns doesn't seem to make a lot of sense in this equation, but what does make sense in this equation? The good news is that it's time for summer vacation. Maybe that means that death can take a holiday too.

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