Riley, age 16, marched from the White House to the Capitol with hundreds of other school students yesterday to ask for better gun control in our country.
Thank you to her and to all the young people who came out across the country yesterday. You don’t have the vote yet but you do have right on your side. Soon enough, your voice will not just be heard in marches, but at the ballot box as well.
Young people tend to have a flare for the dramatic and their signs reflect that: “Don’t shoot us!” their signs demand. “Can you hear the kids screaming?” another asks.
Dramatic but true.
When I went to school the only fears I had of school violence were whether one kid was going to retaliate after I dropped him on the see-saw (he did with a few punches--my fault) and getting whipped in the butt by a towel in the locker room after gym (happened, and I retaliated with a punch.)
Today, and for the 19 years since the 1999 Columbine shooting, kids are increasingly in fear not of being punched but of being shot at school. A whopping 187,000 kids have now experienced school shootings. [Source] I know the percentage chance that any given young person will be shot at school is still very low; but, that such a statistic--the percent chance a child learning algebra or, after Sandy Hook, a child learning to read, might be shot--is anything greater than 0.00% is absurd.
I have become radicalized on this issue. (Though likely only in America would my view seem radical. More like common sense in most countries.) When people on the left say, we are not coming after your guns, well, that doesn’t include me. Hunters, I am not coming after your right to shoot a deer even though I don’t get the thrill of it. Go for it. Everyone else, yeah, I am. There are 300,000,000 guns in this country--one per person. As I have written before, we are basically handing them out to each newborn. That number has to be reduced.
To be reduced, guns need to be taken away in one way or another. It will be a decades long task. An Austrian friend of mine explains that in her country, when a gun-owner passes away, his or her guns are taken back and are not passed down to the next generation. Any gun confiscated in a crime should be destroyed. Gun-turn in programs should begin or be continued, offering generous pay-outs for turned in guns. Maybe by 2040, we can have only 30,000,000 guns instead.
The Second Amendment offers the opportunity to do this because it is, at its core, an amendment about “well-regulated militias,” and as such provides a clear criteria for who has a right to a gun: members of well-regulated militias. So, if an American wants a gun for something other than shooting a deer, he or she should join a well-regulated militia. Otherwise, IMHO, there is a clear case that you have no such right.