A few days ago I came across this news item in an Associated Press release.
In Orange City, Fla, while in traffic, a woman driving her vehicle taps a man riding his motorcycle. By his own description there was no damage to him or his bike. But the woman didn’t stop and instead flees the scene.
The man and two witnesses chase her.
She drives to her home, the man and witnesses in tow. She goes inside her home, pulls out a gun and confronts the three men.
The man that had driven the motorbike quickly draws his concealed weapon and kills the woman on the spot.
Just like that. One less person in this world.
Don’t know anything about the woman except that she was in her mid thirties.
Don’t know anything about the man, either, other than his being dexterous with his weapon.
Afterwards he was quoted as saying that he was sorry, but that the woman had pointed a gun at him.
End of story? No.
A call to the police.
The woman was likely frightened. Surely the motorcyclist and the two witnesses, in following, were able to get the tag of the vehicle. And they could have simply called the police, presented the details and see you in court.
But the right to have the gun on him – concealed – emboldened the motorcyclist. He could take the law into his own hands. With the gun at his side and being skilled at using it – having spent all those hours at the range practicing – he could do it.
What the man didn’t do was spend a few moments thinking of the frailty of human beings, including his.
What the man didn’t do was think of how easily some people can get scared, including himself.
And that the men and women in blue could have been there to mediate and avoid a tragedy.
The woman should have stopped immediately after tapping the man and his bike but she didn’t. Who knows why. And that simple mistake cost her her life.
The story is both scary and sad.
What is it that we are so desperate to defend by owning a concealed weapon?
Surely every person has an answer. But that woman’s mistake didn’t deserve her fate.
The shooter may wish to atone for what he did, for ignoring the complexities of the human being he killed and his own, and for not consulting with the police who could have interceded.
But it’s up to him and his conscience.
And while he debates the matter, I suggest he log on to Gunviolencearchive.org to refresh his ideas. To take a breath and meditate. If only for 5 minutes. That’s all.
In 2020 there were 19,411 willful, malicious or accidental deaths in the US – 39,492 gun related injuries – over 20 thousand suicides.
It’s Americans bleeding. We have to stop this.
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