GUN HO AMERICA


 

GUN HO AMERICA
By Uriah J. Fields

          In defense of myself,
          I have but one life and it is precious,
          unprecedented and never to be repeated;
          I will not surrender my life without a
          fight to the finish. I will protect myself.

Why propose Gun Stamps for the poor? Keep reading.

With allegiance to the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution that protects "the right to bear arms" - as stated in the text:
          a well regulated Militia necessary
          to the security of a free State, the
          right of the people to keep and bear
         Arms, shall not be infringed,"
       Americans are "Gun Ho." The cost in deaths resulting from gun shootings is greater than it is for any other nation in the world. In 2011 guns were used to murder 8,583 people living in the United States, according to available FBI data. For 2012 that number is reported to be 10,800. In the same period there were 138 deaths (other than suicides) resulting from firearms in the United  Kingdom and 2 deaths resulting from firearms in Japan, a nation of 128 million people. At the rate of deaths in Japan the United States with a population of 310 million would have less than 10 deaths.
       These are some of the attention-getting mass shootings in America; Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newton, Connecticut, December 14, 2012 killed 27 people; Sikh Temple in Oak Creek, Wisconsin, August 5, 2012 killed 12 people; a movie theater in Aurora, Colorado, July 20, 2012 killed 12 people; Fort Hood, a military installation located outside of Killen, Texas, November 5, 2009 killed 13 people; Virginia Tech University in Virginia, April 16, 2007 killed 32 people; and Columbine High School Columbine, Colorado, April 20, 1999 killed 13 people. ABC News reports there have  been 31 school shootings in the United States since Columbine. By the time this article is read there is certain to be more shootings. How many? It is impossible to say. It should be added that these numbers of deaths look pale when compared with the deaths during this period that occurred in inner cities across America. Chicago's 2012 homicide toll is 500.
     Purportedly, the nation averages 30 deaths a day as a function of gun violence, with an average of 183 injured, according to the University of Chicago Crime Lab and the Center for Disease Control. The Crime Lab's research estimates the annual cost of gun violence to society, at $100 billion.
       Gun deaths are increasing in America. In three years more Americans will die from gun violence than in automobile accidents, a report found. In three years, the Center for Disease Control numbers nearly 33,000 shooting deaths, compared to 32,000 traffic deaths. With less than 5 percent of the world's population the United States is the home of roughly 35 to 45 percent of the world's civilian-owned guns. Gun ownership in the United States averages 88 per 100 people. The second highest country in civilian-owned guns is Serbia at 58 percent per100 persons and the third highest is Yemen at 54.8 percent per 100 persons, and rates fall significantly from there. There are estimated 270 million guns held by civilians in the United States. There are more than 129,817 federally licensed firearms dealers in the United States, according to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
        With the killing of 20 children under eight years of age at the Sandy Hook Elementary School there has been a nationwide outcry displayed by tearful President Barack Obama calling for something to be done to achieve gun control that will decrease gun violence.
        The National Rifle Association (NRA), the greatest opponent of gun control and financial beneficiary of the unrestricted sale of guns continue to advocate, notwithstanding the shooting of children at Sandy Hook Elementary School, having no restriction on owning guns, stressing no gun control. The NRA reported revenue of $227.8 million in 2012. Since 2005 contributions from the gun industry, manufacturers of guns, "corporate partners" to the NRA totaled between $29.8 million and $52.6 million.
           It appears, however, that the 113th Congress will enact legislation and/or the President will issue an executive order that places some restriction on gun ownership. But how effective this will be in making guns less available to people and decreasing gun violence is a matter of conjecture. The focus of the Congress and President seem to be on legislation that will disallow purchase of high-power weapons, deny mentally unstable people the right to purchase guns, and limit the number of bullets to ten or less that a magazine can hold. Conceivably, a person having several guns containing magazines with less than ten bullets in each gun could execute mass killings like those that occurred at Virginia and Sandy Hook Elementary School.
       The problem: Americans have too many guns. It does not appear that any forthcoming proposal by the government is being considered to decrease the  number of guns owned by people. Without a decrease in gun ownership there can be no significant decrease in gun violence. America need only to look at the United Kingdom and Japan to know how to decrease gun violence.
       In light of the American reality: Americans' obsession with the Second Amendment and the power of the NRA and gun manufacturers, it does not appear that any significant gun control legislation will be achieved in the foreseeable future, even though there is an increase in the number of gun killings in the suburbs, rather than only in inner cities as has been espoused for many years to be true.
        I, the undersigned, herewith, propose that the Congress and President enact legislation, herein called the Equal Opportunity Gun Ownership Act ((EOGOA), that will provide the means for poor people eighteen years of age and above to own guns. This can be accomplished by the government providing "gun stamps" for poor people just as she provided food stamps, currently in the amount of $80.5 billion to buy food for 45 million people. This is a good thing. It is much better than buying drones to kill people. Providing "gun stamps" will also be in keeping with the government's policy of providing legal assistance, (public defenders) for people who are unable to hire an attorney and Medicaid for people who are too poor to buy health insurance. In a violent society where most people own guns and some folk use them to shoot the most vulnerable people, poor people, who do not have guns, it is necessary to level the fighting field, if there is to be a fight, that will give poor people a fighting chance to fight fair and survive. In "gun ho" America" people who can afford to buy guns but do not own guns may seriously consider owning guns even though this will please the NRA and increase the revenue of gun manufacturers. I make this suggestion even though I am of the persuasion that Americans should possess no more guns than other industrialized countries. Safety ranks along with food, shelter and clothing as being basic for living. It has been said that "self-preservation" is the first law of nature." "Self-protection is the key to self-preservation and experiencing "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness."  
         {Let me digress a bit to make a point that is germane to this position. The  Ku Klux Klan was able shortly after the Civil War to become empowered and to brutalize, kill and lynch the people who had been freed from slavery and their off-springs because the Government failed to equip, i.e., arm former slaves with weapons. Also, contributing to the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln and the perpetual suppression of African Americans were two other factors: (1) the Civil War ended too soon -- it should have been fought until the Union Army won a decisive victory, and (2) Jefferson Davis, President of the Confederacy and General Robert F. Lee, Commander of the Confederate Army, along with other secessionist leaders should have been brought to trial and meted justice, as all criminals deserve. Had these things been done the suffering resulting from discrimination and disfranchisement African Americans have endured and suffered during the last 150 years would have been avoided}
        Arming every eligible adult who wants to be armed is the answer to the NRA and gun violence. President Theodore Roosevelt said he was fond of and adopted the West African proverb, "Speak softly and carry a big stick." However, what he didn't say is that when a "big stick" meets a "big stick" there is likely to be an attitudinal change of intent that causes the big stick carriers to respect each other's power.
         A classic example of the actualization of this principle is evident in the way the Cold War was resolved between Russia and the United States. Before questioning the wisdom of providing food stamps for the poor, as some people have done, and providing "gun stamps" for the poor, as some people are likely to do after reading this article, let me urge you to take a look at the subsidies the government provides for farmers and owners of farmland (some whose land lay fallow), each year, to energy that total $20 billion, most to renewable, in 2011. In addition are grants and tax breaks given to corporations such as  ExxonMobil that paid no income tax in 2009 and while making $41 billion in 2011 paid an estimated 17.6 percent tax rate.
    Before ending this article let me say more about the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution which many Americans make a lot of gobbledygook and hollo over, as if  it is more sacred than God, it is worth noting that there are nations that do not have a Second Amendment or any thing comparable in their laws or practices with less than one-tenth of the deaths caused by gun shootings in America. Be aware that this is the "second" amendment, not the "first" amendment. Dare Americans to gloat over American exceptionalism. There is one Creator of all.
        The Second amendment, adopted December 15, 1791, is a part of the Bill of Rights which is the collective name of the first ten amendments to the United States Constitution. Originally the Bill of Rights implicitly and legally protected only white men, excluding American Indians, enslaved African in America (African Americans) and women
       Just as it became necessary after the Civil War to amend the Constitution and add to it the13th Amendment that abolished slavery, the 14th Amendment that provided for the equal protection of laws for all citizens,  and the 15th Amendment that provided voting rights for all citizens, it is vital for the health and conceivably the survival of America as a democracy, that the United States Constitution be amended to make void the Second Amendment and allow owning a gun be subjected to the same laws as owning property such as land, a house, automobile or machete. And regulated by the federal government the same as National Parks are regulated by the government.
     In the meantime and until sanity can be applied from a moral perspective in the interpretation or elimination of the Second Amendment, let Congress and the President proceed with all deliberate speed to enact the proposed Equal Opportunity Gun Ownership Act that will provide "gun stamps" for poor people to buy guns the same as they are provided with food stamps to buy food. These vulnerable people need protection from an ever-increasing number of gun owners who bully and otherwise abuse them. The Government has an obligation to help the poor protect themselves. Like other people, poor people, should rely on themselves to protect themselves. Self-protection is primary protection. The most important things in life a person must do for himself. But he may need assistance.
_______________
Your comment is welcome. Email: uriahfields@emarqmail.com

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I really want to know your thought about my proposal. Thank you.

Copyright 2015 by Uriah J. Fields  









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