Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Arizona Shooting: Why I Pray For More Politicians To Be Shot.

The air waves have been agog, over the past few days, about the "unfortunate incident" of the shooting of the congress woman in Arizona by an obviously deranged fellow. The cable talking heads, the radio talk show hosts, the newspaper and magazine columnists have all come out in condemnation of this act while showing commensurate shock that this outrage could happen in America. Everybody seems to have come to the agreement that the cause of this shooting has everything to do with the tone of the discourse in our politics which has recently become very belligerent.

The general verdict seems to be that our politicians and political rhetoric are the major reason why this incident happened. Many examples of politicians who fan the flames of violence have been given and many examples of how such flames are fanned have also been shown. Also, many television and radio talking heads have been accused - many with very clear evidences - of maintaining the lit flames of violence while laughing all the way to the bank with millions of dollars. Yet, a  particular prominent female politician has been harangued about her practical flame stoking for putting rifle cross hairs on a map detailing her political opponents and telling her followers to take such opponents down.

Such is the circus that has surrounded this shooting incident that no one has bothered, or remembered to look at the very obvious reason for it. That reason being the proliferation of guns, all sorts of guns, in our country. I have tried to find a reason why nobody, except for a few drowned out voices, has come out with this clear truth and the only one I can come up with is that the interests behind gun sales in this country are too powerful.  That is why people will be putting the blame for this shooting on secondary and tertiary reasons while completely ignoring the primary reason, or pretending not to know of its existence.

Now, let's do a little fact checking about guns in America compared to elsewhere around the world, and the effects of guns in society. Below is a table of the top five countries with the most guns per 100 residents.

No. Country              Guns per100 residents   Year
1     United States      90.0                               2007

2     Yemen               61.0                               2007

3     Switzerland        46.0                               2007

4      Iraq                  39.0                               2007

5      Serbia              37.5                               2007

6      France             32.0                               2007

12    Germany          30.0                              2007

18     Mexico           15.0                              2007

25     Russia             9.0                                2007

29     U K                5.6                                2007

30     Iran                 5.3                               2007

33    China               3.5                               2007

34    Nigeria             1.0                               2007

This above survey was taken in 2007 and as you can see, the United States tops with almost one gun per resident. I added some of these other countries in order to show where some of the other civilized countries of the world rank in this list. As you can see, countries like Russia, the United Kingdom and China rank quite low compared to the United States. As you can see, the country that ranks second to the US is Yemen and I don't think I need to explain what kind of country Yemen is to anybody.

The third country on the list is Switzerland, a country without a military in which the government provides most of the weapons to organized militia. When you take aside Switzerland, you will discover that the rest of the countries that make up the top five with the US have one thing in common. They are all countries that have been in wars of recent, or are still in war which will explain why they have a proliferation of guns. These are also countries with no established democratic governments where chaos rule most of the time. That's the kind of company America keeps when it comes to guns.

That's where the comparison ends, though, because it gets worse in the United States. That's because in many of these other countries, the guns are out there because of the war situations they find or found themselves in. This means that even though they're there, most of the guns are illegal and running out of ammunition which can't be found and bought as easily as in the United States. Here, our 2nd amendment rights doesn't only guarantee us guns, it guarantees countless numbers of them and even automatic weapons and ammunition to boot which we can buy as easily as we can buy candy.

Our 2nd amendment rights guarantee that we can even own more guns and ammunition than our local police department if we can afford it. More importantly, it guarantees that we can own more sophisticated and deadlier guns than our policemen carry, with larger magazines than our policemen have on their guns. It guarantees that we can out gun our police whenever and any time we need to. What a great thing for a civilized society, which is why we have the most gun related deaths among all developed nations. That is why over 30,000 Americans die every year from gun related violence and another 200,000 are estimated injured. Going by this statistic, it means that more Americans have died from guns domestically, in the same time frame, than have died in our two wars in Iraq and Afghanistan since those wars began. How about that for a peaceful country?

But, why not? Our constitution tells us that we need the guns to protect ourselves from our government who, we believe, will one day want to take away our "freedoms" - whatever that is - not forgetting protecting us from the angels of death when the war of Armageddon comes around. In the mean time, while waiting for any of the above scenarios to roll around, we will put them guns to use shooting and killing one another while also handing over billions of dollars to the makers and the sellers of the weapons who go under the umbrella of the National Rifle Association (NRA). There, I said it, I finally mentioned the large elephant that is taking up all the space in one half of the room but which everybody is still pretending not to see.

Special interests are really the bane of our society because they are the ones who buy our government and make them only act to protect their interests and not that of the larger society. The NRA has bought our congress and, therefore, no matter the number of deaths that result from the guns they sell to everybody, even mad people, nothing will be done. This is why I am praying for more congress people to be shot reasoning that when they find themselves facing the same dangers from these guns that the rest of us face, then they might realize the risks involved and act.

As things stand, the numbers of people dying from guns in the country is simply statistics to be glanced at and tossed aside by these congress people. I am hoping that being shot at will bring the everyday reality of ordinary Americans closer home to them and will force them to consider whether the money they get from the special interests is worth their lives and those of their loved ones. That is the only thing that will do it because, to these people, the lives of others don't matter. More shots please.

1 comment:

  1. Damn right! I stumbled across your blog, read the top quote about you being a 'progressive mind' and thought "here we go..." but then spotted the title of this post and found that actually you are spot on. I'm from the UK and over here we've been saying everything you just said for years. It's nice to hear a local say it for once! The 2nd Amendment is indeed a massive problem in the US, but everyone ignores it. And I love the bit about outgunning your local police force! Brilliant! Check our Thoughtcrime blog if you get the chance, I have a feeling we would get on very well with you...