Saturday, April 21, 2007

America's obsession with guns

The Virginia Tech horror

It has happened in America time and again. Senseless violence in an educational institution. It is claimed to be the worst ever such shooting but it certainly was not the first. My deepest condolences to all those who died at Virginia Tech. And also to their family and friends. But no matter how much i feel sorry for them things can't be undone. However, lessons can be learned from it. Such that similar incidences do not occur again.

As for the assailant, I don't know in what way killing so many people, some of whom he probably never knew, would satisfy any of his grudges or problems. Surely it was not a spontaneous action. It was quite well planned. With videos and pictures of his intentions being sent to the media before he did the heinous deed. He was most certainly psychotic and needed to be handled carefully. It seems he did show signs of a crooked mind, which were unfortunately ignored. A timely action and this terrible event could have been possibly avoided. But what could drive a person to kill another for absolutely no reason at all? Is society is to be blamed for not understanding a person properly, for discriminating him, for being insensitive to him? Or was he born with a messed up head? Who knows?

The point that i would like to make is, it is not possible to identify all the maniacs in a place and lock them up or counsel them. What could be done is reduce the damage that they can cause. What I mean is, not letting them, or as a matter of fact let anyone get their hands on guns so easily. America is a trigger happy nation and acquiring a gun is so very easy. It is available off the shelf in a nearby store. No fuss, no checks. As simple as that to get armed and ready to shoot. Actually the whole of American culture believes in guns. From their movies to video games. It is a part of the American way of life.

Even an average house would have a hand gun. For what? Are they so insecure about their safety? The basic idea of a handling a gun might be to "shoot to protect yourself" or to "shoot to protect someone else" but basically it is the freedom to shoot, kill and violence. That too if it reaches the hands of a deranged lunatic like in this recent incident. Here too only the motives of the killer are only being investigated but not how he got the guns or any such details. I believe the person who sold the guns is equally guilty and prosecuted. However i believe that would not happen.

If things like this continue, students instead of worrying about their studies, would be worrying about their life, from fear of being shot at by their own classmate. Such a fear in a place of learning is not at all acceptable in a civilized society. An educational institution is a place of harmony and peaceful co-existence. Where young minds come with the purpose of learning, and not with intentions of hate, revenge and violence. Someone a little upset over some frivolous issue is not expected to whip out a gun and start shooting. Is that all the principles and moral values a person will have? Can nothing restrain him from taking another's life? It is probably that few seconds of thought that is eliminated by the gun. Where all it takes is a fraction of a second to pull the trigger.

Things have to acted upon now. The American law and views regarding guns must be changed. If not done so, more innocent lives will be lost for absolutely no reason at all.