By: Keith Kappes
Carter County Times
There is an old joke about eight idiots who formed a firing squad in a circle and shot and killed each other.
That analogy seems to fit our nation today as we see what amounts to a pandemic of gun violence, especially in large cities where thousands of shootings are reported each year.
Innocent persons, including children, often are caught in the crossfire of those trying to kill each other. The growing death toll of law enforcement officers has become a barrier to the recruitment of new officers.
A majority of the murders or attempted murders of husbands and wives in domestic disputes involve firearms. Hiding behind the Second Amendment, state legislatures have relaxed gun laws to the point that you can easily purchase assault rifles that are designed specifically to kill other human beings.
Police tactical squads frequently find they are outgunned by the criminals they must engage in gun battles. Police organizations with access to armored vehicles designed for military use are criticized for protecting themselves in such fashion.
An incident in Texas a few years ago resulted in howls of protest when police used a remote control “killer robot” to get close to a man who had ambushed and killed five police officers. The shooter was killed when the robot’s explosive charge was detonated.
Conventions of the National Rifle Association have included classes on how to survive in a surprise gunfight. But those sessions are based on each participant owning and carrying a personal weapon, most often concealed from view.
For nearly 100 years, carrying a concealed deadly weapon was a crime in this nation but now virtually anyone can do so without any training, criminal background checks or other restrictions.
Now it is easy to anonymously purchase a firearm online or at a gun show or at a festival like Mount Sterling Court Days.
A popular tee shirt among guns rights supporters has this scary message: “Guns don’t kill people – I kill people!”
Keith Kappes can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org