Are Americans too stupid to own guns?
Maybe Americans are too stupid to own guns.
Consider the story of the Mason County owner of an auto-wrecking yard where $80,000 worth of fireworks for two communities’ Fourth of July displays were stored. According to one of the show organizers, the owner knew the fireworks were there but that didn’t stop him from trying out his new rifle at 1 o’clock in the morning.
The explosion was heard a mile away.
That stupidity pales against that displayed by those who opened fire early Sunday morning in Southeast Seattle where people were leaving a party. Those shots took the life of Sherry Soth, 21, and left five other young people wounded.
Firing guns in the city, into a crowd of people? What was the point?
“It was complete recklessness,” said one of the party-goers.
And complete stupidity, fortunately an affliction that can often be remedied by education.
There are conscientious gun owners, smart ones, those who know that every gun should be treated as a loaded one and a dangerous instrument, who know the havoc guns can wreak and consider the damage that can be done before pulling the trigger.
Isn’t there some way to transfer the knowledge and conscientiousness of those gun owners to the stupid ones?
One radical solution sometimes offered is mandatory gun training in schools, much like drivers’ ed.
Or what about taking a pointer from Switzerland, where military service is mandatory for men, voluntary for women and everyone gets firearms training and takes their weapons home with them each night?
A “well-regulated militia” would seem to get us closer to what the framers of the Constitution had in mind more than random gunfire by stupid people.
Achenblog by Joel Achenbach
Postman On Politics