15 February 2008

N.I.U. School Shooting

Northern Illinois University is just 20 miles up the road from my house. What this idiot did was reprehensible and the fact that he was wearing all black just proves that he ultimately is influenced by other things in his life, as IIRC, that's what the Columbine boys were wearing when they did their happy routine several Aprils ago.

I think what we'll see come out of this is, yet again, someone who had mental illness issues, who had no direction in his life and who, for the lack of any role model either in his family or in his relationships, decided to model his life after "famous" people who had "had enough".

Two weeks ago, we (Chicago-area) had the execution of five women at a Lane Bryant store for no apparent reason. If the idiot who did this had taken even ten seconds to realize that they pretty much don't take cash payments there and that they only thing he'd get by robbing the place was a bunch of credit card receipts and checks he couldn't cash (and maybe a few 42DD bras) he should have never been there, but at some point he would have ended up SOMEWHERE.

I'm generally a pacifist when it comes to confrontation, however, this latest incident and having it so close to my home raises the issue of "gun control". What makes me very angry is that all the anti-gun nuts will now run around and scream that we need to ban guns. Yet all of the gun violence is either from guns that were ILLEGALLY obtained (i.e., gun control wouldn't have stopped it) or they were legally obtained by people who eventually had mental issues.

So what does this accomplish? Frankly, since I'm living in one of the two states who won't come close to issuing conceal-carry permits in any fashion I wonder if that would help? In BOTH cases, there was enough time for someone to get a 911 call out to police either just BEFORE or just AS the shooting started. This tells me that there exists a small period of time where, for a properly trained and certified individual who had a conceal-carry permit they could draw a weapon and protect themselves in some fashion. BEFORE you beat the crap out of me for that, I will recognize that these permits will never assure that someone can shoot straight, have the right weapon, won't hit innocent bystanders, etc. There is a risk but then the argument will segue to whether or not the possibility of someone ELSE having a weapon will deter the common criminal/deviant from even starting something.

There's plenty of open debate on this and research to prove that BOTH sides are the right side of this argument so I'm not quite sure what I'm saying (sorry). I just know that "banning" all weapons isn't the answer because, as the police/FBI/DEA and all other law enforcement personnel know, the bad people will ALWAYS find a way to get weapons. A ban would just be legislation against the law abiding citizen who want to own a weapon for target shooting or sport.

As someone who owns a few handguns which I use ONLY for target shooting and competition, these are legitimate concerns, but I know that I'd be a hell of a lot more confident if I could draw my weapon if the life of my family or I were threatened. I'm also fairly confident I'd accurately hit the evil bastard and no one else.

My condolences to the families of the deceased and to those who will now live with the trauma this ass has inflicted about them. My prayers are with you during this very difficult time in your lives.

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