Gun shows happen as do concealed-carry permit classes. And life goes on.
But increasingly, mass shootings happen and life comes to a screeching halt.
Referencing the September 11 issue of THE WEEK (the week that a former Roanoke TV reporter filmed the first selfie murder) I took a second look at statistics gleaned from three different articles. The numbers are chilling. Quoting statistics given by Adam Lankford, University of Alabama criminal justice professor “while the U.S. accounts for just 5 percent of the global population, is has 31 percent of all public mass shootings in which at least four people are killed.”
Gee… I didn’t know that it took four people to constitute a ‘mass.’ What about three killings?
I don’t know how Adam Landford can keep his statistics current. Maybe he has grad students doing the paperwork. Certainly Mercer’s campus bloodbath has added to the total.
Gun violence has become so pervasive that I’m beginning to see guns when there are no guns at all. Yesterday, on my return home from Pueblo, I checked my side mirror; I checked my rearview mirror; and assured that it was safe to change lanes, I did so.
Yikees! I narrowly missed being rear-ended by a car that appeared out of thin air. The other driver (that would be the careless driver) must have been speeding… he must have changed lanes in the interval between my looking in the rearview mirror and the side mirror. OK. So maybe I was careless too.
For me, my thoughts following the near collision were less about possible injuries or probable car repairs than about the other driver’s anger. He missed me, but he was not amused. He followed me to the next stop light – shouting, laying on the horn, and making rude gestures.
Those I could ignore, but one of my over-riding thought was WHAT IF HE HAS A GUN! What if he follows me home?
Silly, I know, but my point is that given the culture and the number of guns, anything can lead to bloodshed. It is no wonder that our sensitivity is heightened and out of proportion. What does this full-to-the-brim sense of vulnerability lead to? Gun Shows for sure. Maybe I need a gun… maybe I need another gun.
It is concerning to me (but in keeping with thoughts triggered by my near car collision) that according to a 2015 Gallup Poll, only 47 percent favor more stringent gun control today. These numbers are down from 58 percent in 2012.
With an escalating fear factor nipping at our heels, we’re on our way to the “Dark Side.”