Saturday, December 15, 2012

Guns Without Bullets

Guns Without Bullets

About ten years ago while working at the River along the Riverfront Park Trail we saw a nocturnal animal, raccoon, out in the daylight acting strangely.
Immediately we surmised rabies. Since more people were using the trail, many with dogs, this rabid animal had to be remedied.
We called the police dispatcher who told us an officer would be notified to respond. Two came and accessing the problem one officer cleared the area of walkers while the other drew his weapon and fired two shots killing the diseased animal.
While the first officer collected the carcass into a plastic bag the other asked our help to recover the spent shell casings which had ejected his gun upon firing. I thought this odd since I had hunted when young and had never retrieved spent casings after firing my rifle.
I questioned the need to recover the casings. The officer replied that a policeman must account for every bullet he or she is issued. Enlightening as this was it did not register with me until last Saturday. The shooting in Arizona of twenty, killing six, should wake up each of us to think about the ease of purchasing a gun and magna clips of thirty bullets.
This begs the question : If a police officer sworn to uphold the law, by definition a pillar of the community, needs to account for ammunition why in heaven sake don't we require citizens to be held to the same standard ?
Guns don't kill, bullets kill. The NRA has a strong strangle hold on guns and gun sales. Therefore, control must be gained from a new angle, namely, through sale and registering of ammunition. It should start with control of mega clips and proceed from there in a logical sequence.
Realize that I am regulated as to how many prescription pills I can have in my possession at a given time. I can't shout "Fire" in a crowded hall. I must obey the laws governing behavior between me and my fellow human beings or else mayhem occurs.
The Cowboy society romanticized in our history is long gone and shouldn't be resurrected in this the 21st Century. Zealots, though, will cry foul and quote the holy writ of our Constitution as the framers wrote it. Let them have their guns, yes, those flint locks of the 18th Century to lock and load to their heart's content.

Ronald C. Downie

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