Fish: Mass shootings put 2nd Amendment into question


My once semi-reasonable stance on your right to own and bear arms is beginning to dissipate. I'm finding it harder and harder to reconcile my feelings around it. While I believe that most you out there are responsible gun owners, while I believe that a majority of you would never act out and be irresponsible with your firearms, I'm starting to feel as though we need to govern your 2nd Amendment right. Sorry.

Of course, I make this statement hot on the heels of the worst church shooting in U.S. history, only about six weeks removed from the worst mass shooting in U.S. history in Las Vegas, and two weeks after the worst terror attack Since 9/11 in New York City. And while the New York City attack didn't involve a gun, it did involve the same mind set. Kill as many people as you can in the shortest amount of time. So yeah, I'm feeling a tad vulnerable right now that this can flat out happen anywhere and anytime and we can do nothing to stop it. And if I could wave a magic wand and make all guns just disappear, I would. We would be a complete gunless society straight from the pages of Mayberry RFD. But I can't and it's unrealistic so let's move on.

If someone with a beef can simply open fire on innocent people, needlessly mowing down women, children and men, then it's time to take a hard look at it. We need to create harder laws with stiffer penalties for those who break the rules. Common sense stuff — if you've gone to jail you forfeit your right to own a gun; if you can't fly, you can't own a gun; if you've been sent to a behavior modification specialist because you exhibit violent behavior, you can't own a gun. I can keep listing things here but I think you get the idea, it's common sense stuff.

But the gun lobbies are strong. The NRA always has an answer for these shootings that suggests, "guns don't kill people, people kill people." That's true with one caveat — people with guns kill people. You want to make the argument that knifes kill people? Sure they do! I'm not going to argue that with you. But if the Vegas shooter was throwing knives out of his window and his directive was mass murder we'd be laughing right now and not mourning the loss of innocent life. Look, this is no different than getting behind the wheel of your car when you're drunk. You simply can't do it, but people do, and when they get caught the punishment is swift and fairly severe. If it wasn't, a lot more of you would pour a few extra cocktails into your system and drive home. But you don't because the law says that if you drink and drive you will go down.

Another great thing that the gun lobby does, "now is not the time to talk about guns, we need to have respect for those that were killed." Here's what I say to that: "SHUT UP!!!" If we can't talk about this when it happens we will never talk about it. When that twisted soul walked into Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., and began putting bullets into babies, that would have been the time we should have talked about it. But we couldn't and we did nothing to prevent it from happening again. When you can shoot our children and nothing happens, what does that say about us as a culture? I can't be the only one that's mad here; I can't be the only one that is deeply affected by murderous rampages.

So, yes! I can no longer look through a lens that the constitution made for us that it's our right to have them. We clearly no longer know how to play with our toys. If your toddler hit their sibling with a toy truck, you would most likely take the toy truck away and put them in time out. So explain to me where the lack of reasoning falls out of sorts around these tragedies? Your truck wielding toddler receives swift justice with consequences that would prevent it from happening again. Yet, someone can walk into a house of worship and be gunned down and the first thing that is said, "this is not a gun issue, guns don't kill people, people kill people!" As Ozzy Osbourne once said, "if that's the case, why do we give people guns when they go to war? Why not just send the people"? What the hell is up with that?

Fish is the opinionated morning jock on Classic Hits 92.7. He offers up his opinion at 7:50 a.m. every morning (Monday through Friday). Let's start the revolution. E-mail him at The opinions expressed by columnists do not necessarily reflect the views of the Brattleboro Reformer.


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