Are we there yet? Did the two recent mass shootings involving automatic weapons in two American cities hours apart, which left more than 30 men, women and children dead within seconds, tip the scales in favor of banning the sale of weapons of war to civilians?
Before I’m called one more overwrought leftist liberal intent on abolishing the Second Amendment and taking away Americans’ right to own guns, know this. I respect the Second Amendment. I respect hunters. I respect responsible gun ownership.
I do not respect a person who mows down as many humans as possible with a weapon designed to kill as many humans as possible in the shortest time possible.
Yes, I care about what motivates a person to kill. Yes, I blame violence in our culture and the hateful rhetoric that encourages killing. However, the mass shootings over which we repeatedly wring our hands and offer thoughts and prayers would not be so massive if the shooters did not have automatic weapons of war legally and easily available to them.
Unlike a hunter who, with one shot from a non-automatic rifle, skillfully fells an animal and feeds his family, a shooter firing into a crowd of people with an automatic weapon has no skill, no courage, no honorable intent. Hunters know this. Responsible gun owners know this. The vast majority of Americans know this.
So why is America so reluctant to ban automatic weapons? We can get rid of automatic assault weapons without gutting the Second Amendment. Are we ready to demand sensible gun laws? Are we ready to vote out legislators who refuse to listen to the people regarding gun legislation? Have we reached the tipping point? If not, what will it take?
Ann M. Pompelio