Consider these two examples.
About a year ago or so in Florida, a man riding a motorcycle was tapped by a moving vehicle at an intersection.
By his own admission, neither he nor his bike were damaged. But the other vehicle, driven by a woman, didn’t stop and left the scene instead.
The man in the bike followed. Another person, who had witnessed the accident, followed, too.
The woman arrived at her home, aware that the man in the bike had trailed her. She went inside, took out her gun, stepped out and pointed it at him.
The man drew his own and shot her dead.
No charges were pressed.
What stands out in this incident?
The woman should have stopped, yes, apologized and taken responsibility.
The man who chose to follow needed only to get her license plate and report it to the police. He already had a witness. But he didn’t. He chose to seek justice on his own.
Now consider this second example.
A few days ago, in Houston, a man and his wife were robbed at an ATM. As the robber fled, the man shot at him but missed. Instead, he struck and killed a 9 year old girl sitting in a passing car.
A grand jury chose to not indict the man.
So who takes responsibility for the death of the 9 year old? No one.
In both instances, the responses of the shooters show poor judgment and a profound disregard for our institutions.
The number of states which allow its residents to carry guns without a license is steadily increasing. But it does not make any sense.
What is being neglected in the two examples described above?
The level of emotional continence in the men who fired the guns. Neither had enough emotional strength to see the potential consequences of their actions.
The law let them get away with it but their behaviors are clear examples of what we’re not doing as a society.
To not require a license to carry a weapon that can kill another person is to assume that the carrier is of sound judgment. Otherwise, why would it be allowed? So why are we not measuring that?
This is our failure as a society.
We have let Second Amendment defenders carry the day without regard for the character that should stand behind it.
In the name of freedom we are failing to protect our citizens.
In the year 1789, March 4th, in the city of New York, the second amendment was put forward as part of the bill of rights. It read, ‘A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.’
That was 233 years ago, nearly a quarter of a millennium.
At the time it was justified as the nation was being formed and its institutions developed. But today the second amendment is outdated.
It has become an obstacle to our political maturation and public safety.
Why didn’t the man in the first example call the police so they, instead, would track the woman? He had all the identifying information.
Why didn’t the man in the second example, think of the consequences of an errant shot?
Now an innocent 9 year old is dead because of his poor judgment.
Neither shooter was doing anything for the ‘security of a free State’ as the second amendment reads. But the law allowed it.
Both men were indulging their lack of emotional control and poor judgment.
In Texas, there is now a motion being proposed to allow the lowering of the age for lawful possession of a firearm without a license to 18 years.
No mention is made of assessing the emotional maturity of the gun bearer.
The second amendment to the constitution is impeding our democratic progress.
In the face of growing global threats, i.e. China, it is imperative that we accelerate our civic maturation, to go hand in hand with our technological, scientific and industrial advancement.
Evidence that we are not making enough civic progress is the extreme polarization we are stuck with at this time.
What is needed now is to foster dialogue between our citizens and facilitate emotional growth. Not unrestricted gun ownership.
The second amendment is impeding our personal safety and our evolution as a nation.