In the wake of all the violent and tragic shootings both in schools and other public facilities it seems the answer is GUN CONTROL. Really? I don’t own a gun (I have shot them) but last time I checked a gun is an inanimate object incapable of hurting anyone by itself. There are those tragic events where a parent leaves a loaded gun lying around their house and children kill or hurt them self or others. That is a totally avoidable tragedy with the use of a simple gunlock or even better, a gun safe.
Don’t worry. I don’t belong to the NRA and I’m not a “gun in every home” kind of guy. These weapons are just that. Weapons. One model, just to get an idea, is the MR762A1 manufactured by Heckler & Koch. Heckler & Koch makes weapons used by the U.S. Military and they all look the same except there is one notable difference. Civilian versions are semiautomatic while the militaries version is fully automatic.
Civilians in the U.S. Can’t own a fully automatic assault rifle. Really these weapons are called machine guns. A semi-auto gun needs you to pull the trigger to shoot every round in the magazine. Fully auto guns can be switched into a mode where one trigger press can fire a full magazine of bullets.
So as our government struggles to solve the problem of people going into schools or theatres with their “assault weapons” remember we can’t even buy or own a fully automatic weapons. We can’t convert a semi into a fully automatic because it’s already against the law to own one and you will go to jail for 20 years.
Really; think about it. If a bad person wants to get a weapon he will find a way to get one. He’s a criminal. All the hysteria about clip capacity really doesn’t mean anything. So I bring four clips not two so I can kill everyone.
Now…lets talk about the real issue here. The issue that is a difficult problem for the government and society so solve and the one we don’t want to face. That problem is access to quality mental heath treatment for the time needed to get things turned around right. We brand people with mental illness then deny them proper insurance coverage, life insurance, jobs you know the same stuff every other person expects to be available to them.
We use to shut the mentally ill away in asylums “for their own good.” That made it so we, “Out here,” didn’t have to deal with people like the ones “in there.” Did that system work? No. I’ve studied this issue for years and the history is clear. Before asylums we had almshouses and no treatment of any kind was offered. Then in the late 1800s society moved from almshouses to asylums. These asylums were massive college campus sized facilities. Often times they grew their own food, had their own power station and were really independent from the rest of society.
Starting in the late 1970s and through out the 1980s asylums were systematically closed, The population released back into society and most of these campus sized facilities were leveled leaving no trace of the tragically horrific job they had done in helping the mentally ill. Where did the patients go? Some went to homes, family but a large portion of them ended up living on the streets, homeless and hopeless.
Come on people. We are making all this noise about gay marriage where are all the people fighting for the rights of folks that suffer with a mental illness they never asked for. I have way more to say on this than what will fit in one blog so hold on. The people responsible for the recent tragedies and mass murders weren’t driven to do it because they could buy a gun. They did it because our system, us, won’t take the treatment of mental illness seriously and bring the resources to bare and help the afflicted.
Next time I’ll talk about a simple tool to use at home with your children called The Grump Meter. It’s in the home where we have the chance to teach and equip our kids to deal with this crazy world in a positive and healthy way. We all have a responsibility to society to force the government and insurance companies to treat folks with mental illness like just the people they are. Wow. Discrimination is alive and well in the 21st century.