Why Are we obsessed with guns in America?
(January 23, 2011) Lamar D. Moore, a suspect in the kidnapping and sexual assault of a runaway teenage girl, walked into the Northwestern District of the Detroit Police Department and opened fire, wounding four Detroit police officers before being killed by Detroit police in theensuing gun battle. The four wounded officers are expected to survive and recover from their wounds.
(Tuesday, January 25, 2011) Michigan State Senator Mike Green (R) introduced intolegislation a bill that would eliminate the list of places that concealed weapons are currently banned in Michigan. That list includes churches, bars and arenas. Churches, bars and arenas!
For the sake of this discussion, let’s focus on these three places in particular. If Senator Green’s bill passes, parishioners would be allowed by law to bring guns into their respective places of worship. Process that for a moment. I am far from a religious scholar but I am not aware of ANY religion that would be comfortable with the fact that people who enter their place of worship would be allowed to bring a concealed weapon into that place of worship UNDER MICHIGAN STATE LAW. Let’s take that point a step further: how many parishioners of ANY religion would WANT to take a concealed weapon into their respective places of worship? I certainly WOULD NOT want to do so. A place of worship is the ULTIMATE area of safety and peace, right? At least it SHOULD be.
Recent history has proven otherwise. On Sunday, March 8, 2009, in Maryville, Illinois (approximately 20 miles northeast of St. Louis where I live), Pastor Fred Winters was shot dead in front of his horrified congregation at the First Baptist Church of Maryville by a crazed gunman. On Sunday, May 31, 2009, Dr. George Tiller was shot dead inside his church by a gunman driven by his stance against abortion. TWO murders INSIDE churches. Is there no sacred place?
How about lawful concealed weapons allowed in bars? In BARS? Where people are encouraged to consume one of the most lethal mind altering substances, alcohol. Have you heard of a “bar room brawl”? How does a “bar room shoot out” sound?
Of course, there can be no better venue to lawfully bring a concealed weapon into than a crowded arena, right? If an official makes a controversial call against your team, you can just pull your piece out and blast the official, right? WRONG! In a country still reeling from the tragic event in Tucson, Arizona earlier this month, in this corner it seems irresponsible for an elected official ANYWHERE to propose such legislation.
This proposed law is just a paragraph in a sad American story: the OBSESSION with guns. What is this addiction to guns all about? What have we become, America? When will this madness STOP? How much more loss of life must we suffer by gunfire before we get it? Now the Connecticut Children and courageous teachers... and many more across the great USA.
It will take more than an ADULT conversation to address our addiction to guns.
It will take a COURAGEOUS conversation.
I’m ready. Are you?