That picture of Obama holding a shotgun is a joke, isn’t? I don’t know if it’s staged or not, but frankly I don’t think it should’ve been released as it looks like desperate PR. It screams “Yes! I’m sympathetic to the gun-loving public!” It’s up there with ‘concerned-look-at-Osama-video-capture.’ These Twitter-centric efforts are backfiring, in my opinion.
I also think that the drive to ban guns following a few more recent US shootings is the wrong focus. I’m more worried about why a significant minority of Americans want to use their weapons to go out and kill people. Remove the gun and they’ll use something else, and if they don’t use something else the black market will help them out. Many other countries have legalised guns, and while ownership is highest in America, there’s no relative rate of gun crime elsewhere. In fact I’m quite concerned that a thread in many US shooters is that they appear to be zonked out on brain-skewering anti-depressants. Prozac Nation has a 400% increase in antidepressants over the last 20yrs; coincidentally shootings have become more common in this time frame.
People get run over by cars. Ban cars? You can kill people with knives. Ban knives? Fix the problem, not the symptom! I’m not a fan of weapons and wouldn’t object to their banning, but it’s the misuse of the object rather than the object which concerns me.
In India, Sikhs don small daggers as part of their religion. I don’t hear about them going around and stabbing people, because their intent is religious, not malicious. When I buy a knife, I want to cut onions not people. If I want a gun I may want to shoot clay pigeons or just be a collector. Yet, by holding this view I’m made to feel like an NRA butt-kisser when I think many other liberals haven’t employed enough brain cells to think rationally.
Sure, guns are a very easy way to kill lots of people in a cowardly way, but hey, bombs are easy to fashion too. Someone determined will have no lack of imagination.