Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

Sister Newspapers' Blogs

December 27, 2012

COLUMN: Debate after shooting predictably turns to gun rights, security

A lot of people were wondering what the National Rifle Association would have to say about the Newtown, Conn., massacre. And the NRA wanted it that way.

Maintaining official silence for a week after a shooting rampage at Sandy Hook Elementary School killed 26 people including 20 students, the gun rights organization promised a plan that would seriously address this sort of violence.

As it turned out, the answer, according to the NRA, is to post more armed guards at every school in America. The cost, by the way, has been estimated at upward of $2 billion a year.

Not surprisingly, NRA leaders flatly rejected any suggestion the Newtown incident warrants tightening gun laws. Instead, the organization’s executive vice president, Wayne LaPierre, pegged much of the blame on American culture including a bleeding-heart news media that goes overboard with coverage of such tragedies, entertainment outlets that produce violent video games and movies that encourage bloody rampages.

So I guess I’m doubly to blame for what happened in Newtown. Not only am I a journalist, I’m someone who has watched more than his share of violent movies.

Funny thing, though. Despite my film-watching habits, I have never — ever — had the slightest desire to shoot up an elementary school or any other venue for that matter. Is there something wrong with me?

Actually, the problem here is that LaPierre is another one of those gasbags more interested in protecting his turf than addressing the problem. Watching a violent movie does not prompt someone to kill. That line of logic is about as silly as saying someone who owns a gun is a monster in the making.

LaPierre also declared that America needs to come up with a national database of mentally ill individuals, and implied that more of them need to be put away for the safety of those not so categorized.

Text Only
Sister Newspapers' Blogs
Bill Archer
AP Video
Raw: Thousands Flocking to German Crop Circle Obama Chides House GOP for Pursuing Lawsuit Raw: Otters Enjoy Water Slides at Japan Zoo Two Women Narrowly Avoid Being Hit by Train Raw: Plane Lands on New York Highway Raw: Amphibious Landing Practice in Hawaii Crayola Announces Family Attraction in Orlando Texas Scientists Study Ebola Virus Six PA Cops Indicted for Robbing Drug Dealers Wisc. Twins Celebrate a Century of Laughter LeBron James Sends Apology Treat to Neighbors Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Broken Water Main Floods UCLA Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow Harding Love Letters Now Open to Public In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast Raw: Weapons Fire Hits UN School in Gaza Raw: 16 Killed in Gaza Market Strike Britain Testing Driverless Cars on Roadways Cat Fans Lap Up Feline Film Festival
Greg Jordan