Posted on Raging Chicken Press

Guns, Newspapers, The NRA

This article was first published on the Raging Chicken Press

The shooting at The Capital Gazette in Annapolis, Maryland on Thursday, where 5 people were killed, hit me hard.

As a recovering newspaper journalist, I used to work for papers about that size. I covered similar stories to those that the journalists at that paper cover.

I didn’t always make friends with people when I reported on corruption. There was that one time when I sued a township over their refusal to release their yearly budget (they wouldn’t let me have a copy and review it). At anytime back in 2006-07 that could have been me. I could have been one of those journalists. I still know plenty of journalists that are still in newsrooms just like The Capital Gazette.

It turns out the killer, Jarrod Ramos, 38, of Laurel, MD had a vendetta against the paper. He’s harassed numerous people at the paper and elsewhere.

Ramos Had A Record, He Still Had Access To A Gun — Thanks NRA

Ramos was convicted of a misdemeanor for harassing a former high school acquaintance. So, how did he get a gun? Oh, that’s right, the National Rifle Association (NRA), has done everything in their power to block any legislation, federal or state or even local, that could have prevented a nutcase like this from getting a gun.

The NRA used to represent gun owners who wanted sensible gun laws and safety. Somewhere along the way the NRA saw green and became little more than a lobbying arm of the gun manufacturers. Money corrupts, as we all know.

Could this shooting have been prevented if there were stricter gun laws on the books? Maybe. It’s not definitive, but any obstacle to stop would be gun-toting crazies is a good thing.

Not Saying No Guns — Just Want Sensible Gun Laws

You need a license or a certificate of some sort for so many things, but not for a gun. Driving a car you need a license, fishing you need a license, do I need to go on?

Some gun owners resist a 3-day waiting period to getting a gun. It’s only 3 days people! Others think background checks on all gun purchases are a burden. Well, you know what? Tell that to the families who lose a loved one every day to gun violence in cities like Philadelphia and Chicago.

We could go on and on with this gun debate and get nowhere. Things will only change when we hold those making the laws accountable. Too many politicians are paid off – yes PAID OFF – by the NRA to get in the way of gun laws.

For example, where are the gun laws after the mass shooting on February 14, 2018, in which seventeen students and staff at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida were killed and another seventeen were injured?

We’re at the end of June and NOTHING. Let’s let that sink in.

So Where Does This Leave Us?

Pretty much, where we’ve been. But we need to fight for sensible gun laws. I’m not advocating for no guns. I’m advocating for smarter laws that keep, or try and keep guns out of the hands of people who have no business having one.

Rants and Raves

Guns Do Kill People… At The Hands Of People

Policy Change For Orlando

I still can’t get over what happened at Pulse Night Club during the early morning hours of Sunday. The amount of hate that goes into doing something this horrendous is beyond me. My heart aches for all those involved, both the wounded and dead victims, those who were there that night and the family members and friends of those affected.

In the aftermath of this insanity, most “civil” people condemned the attack. Many encouraged people to not only use their words, but take action (ie. give blood, volunteer, etc.). Yet there has been some really ugly actions (verbal and otherwise) taking place. People have taken to social media to say things that, either implied or otherwise, the people at the club deserved it because of their orientation. This is so wrong on so many levels. No one deserves to be murdered… EVER.

I wanted to write a lengthy commentary on the gun control issue, but I’ve decided to put it in simple list form:

  • There is no need for an AR-15. The only purpose for this gun is to kill as many people as possible as quickly as possible.
  • The 2nd Amendment was written in 18th Century when the best weapon was a highly inaccurate musket.
  • There is no need for a high-capacity magazine. Seriously, unless you’re out to kill people, there’s nothing wrong with reloading.
  • Background checks have to get better. People should be able to buy guns, but lunatics shouldn’t. The FBI knew about the gun man 2 years ago and he still was able to LEGALLY buy a gun. WTF!
  • Bad guys will always be able to get guns, with or without gun control. Though if they get them illegally, it’s harder and there are harsher repercussions for doing so.

Let’s make one fact perfectly clear. There is nothing wrong with owning a gun. It’s the kind of gun and who can get a gun (legally) that’s the problem. The National Rifle Association, was originally setup to be an association to self control guns, they are now just as evil as those who use guns to kill. They enable evil people, who shouldn’t have guns, to buy them legally.

I know this is a tough discussion. I know this issue divides many of my friends. But, regardless of what side of the issue you align, you have to agree, something needs to be done. We are 164 days into 2016 and we’ve already had 133 mass shootings. What’s wrong with that picture.

One more thing… LOVE IS LOVE (mic drop).

Okay, now’s your chance to tell me that your agree with me or that I’m crazy socialist, anti-gun, lunatic, who wants to take away your freedom. And go…