After the mass shootings this week in Oregon and Connecticut, as well as the shootings in Colorado, Wisconsin, Minneapolis, Seattle, Oklahoma, and California earlier this year, it is the responsibility of all rational adults in the United States to take a stand against gun violence by demanding that retail outlets such as Wal-Mart and other, similar retailers stop selling Assault Weapons.
While I fully support the Constitutional Rights of all U.S. Citizens, including the Second Amendment, I can see no rational reason that ANY private citizen should have access to military grade weapons. Hunting, self-defence, and simply being a weapons collector are reasonable examples of legitimate reasons to own weapons, however, none of these are an excuse for owning functional weapons of war.
With at least eight mass shootings in 2012, and with an increasing frequency of shootings over the last decade, the number of killings with guns in the United States is 19.5 times higher than that of similar high-income countries in the world. Since 1982, we have mourned no less than 61 incidents of mass murders in the United States.
Existing "Waiting Period" Gun Laws are clearly not enough. We need strong laws that prevent weapons of mass killings from ending up in the hands of those with violent or mentally unstable tendencies. I would go so far as to suggest that individuals should be subject to a licensing and registration program when engaging in the purchase of weapons of war, including a psychological evaluation for weapons which cannot be reasonably considered for use in hunting or self-defence. While we may not be able to prevent the sale of weapons which may be used in future incidents similar to these shootings, removing the most frequently used weapons of violence from quick and easy access via retail locations such as Wal-Mart is the first step in protecting innocent lives from unprovoked violence.
Call on your Congresspersons, your retailers, and most of all each other to stand together today, tomorrow, and every day there after. We must all take responsibility for the violence that continues to happen in our country, in our workplaces, in our schools, and in our homes.
We are better than senseless violence like this, and together we can bring an end to the rash of horrific events such as these.