Guns, Boats, Cars, and heart attacks

This blog is amended and expanded from a comment written on another blog, so if–by some extraordinarily remote possibility you saw that entry—-I wrote it so technically I didn’t steal anything.

I, for one, would like to see my great grand children grow up. Never mind that I’d have to reach 150 to see that happen, but like all other people in the world I’ve never let an inconsequential thing like reality get in my way. Hope and vision can serve to create a future reality. After all, 100 years ago who would have thought their great grandchildren would be taking 10 hour trips to and from Europe trapped in the middle seats of an air bus instead of ships on par with the Titanic?

Instead of dwelling on torture and catastrophe, I’ll choose to move on to examine the abject stupidity and the abysmal lack of common sense in this country. Why in hell would you think that you’re the one the police are going to choose to run in and save–especially if you’re not rich or influential. While the rest of the population wait for the police to come save them, the rich and influential have bodyguards who, by the way, carry guns. And many aren’t as gentlemanly as they were 100 years ago. There were about 2224 people on board the Titanic and only 20 lifeboats (There were supposed to be more, but the 1st class passengers would have been appalled at the eyesore). Even at that, 68% of the people on the Titanic died (around 1514, the highest proportion of those were the men–especially men in 2nd and 3rd class berths). (stats shamefully lifted from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RMS_Titanic). Now, think about the fact that there are about 3 police officers per 1000 people available to save you from a criminal. (According to the website http://www.project.org/info.php?recordID=33 it states that the ratio of police to population in the US comes to about 2.3 officers per thousand residents.). That’s like having 6 lifeboats and a small dinghy on the Titanic. Remember, the rich and influential were the first ones off the boat. If you think things are any different now, remember who got the TARP money–the people facing foreclosure or the bankers and CEO’s? They have their protection. Do you have yours?

You have more of a chance getting hit by a car when you walk across the street or drive along the highway than you have getting shot by a gun in this country. When you get into a car and go down the road at 40 to 70 miles an hour, you’re sitting inside a potential weapon. Do I hear anyone talk about rewriting the law against driving your own car just because it’s capable of killing another person? No. At least not yet.

First off, I’ll get this argument out of the way. For those of you who say, “If you’ve ever been at the wrong end of a gun, you wouldn’t think that way,” I have news for you under the heading of ‘why I left my first husband.’ The asshole was an alcoholic who worked 1 week the entire time we were married—I think that was the week he was sober. He came home one night from the bar so drunk he was hallucinating, pointing his loaded 30 06 at me. That’s when I decided it might be better to get a divorce. Just as I wouldn’t recommend scrapping all vehicles because there are drunks/assholes on the road, I wouldn’t recommend scrapping guns because there are drunks/assholes on the highway of life.

If you’re drunk and drive, there are serious penalties, and if you get behind the wheel with your buddies and hit a tree because you were drunk, you’ll be dead or you’ll live to regret it. That’s called the consequences of your actions. But how many more people are there on the road who are cautious, alert drivers? Gun ownership is much the same. After all, there are several million gun owners in the USA who haven’t killed anyone, but the same can be said about anyone driving a car, truck, train or plane–the potential is there. Hell, you can walk out your door, trip over your front step and die. I don’t see people trying to outlaw stairs, either. Life is dangerous. Get over it.

For those of you who might think I must be some gun crazed cowgirl, the few times in my life that someone tried to teach me to use a firearm, it was more like, “What is a safety again? Where is it? What am I supposed to do first? Oh…I forgot the bullets, again?” Unlike the movies, where the bad guys wait around for their turn to get killed by the good guys, I’m sure the criminal would be just as happy to kill me with my own firearm. I’d be better off trying to talk them to death.

More law abiding citizen’s lives have been saved because they were armed, The only thing that altering the Stand Your Ground law in Florida, or burying the 2nd amendment under a sea of paperwork will do will be to make it easier for criminals to commit crimes with little fear that the next house or neighborhood they visit will have someone who says, “No, I won’t be your next victim!”

Let’s take this one more step and examine the biggest killer of human beings in this country today. According to http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/, “The 15 leading causes of death in 2010 were as follows:
1 Diseases of heart
2 Malignant neoplasms
3 Chronic lower respiratory diseases
4 Cerebrovascular diseases
5 Accidents (unintentional injuries)
6 Alzheimer’s disease
7 Diabetes mellitus
8 Nephritis, nephrotic syndrome and nephrosis
9 Influenza and pneumonia
10 Intentional self-harm (suicide)
11 Septicemia
12 Chronic liver disease and cirrhosis
13 Essential hypertension and hypertensive renal disease
14 Parkinson’s disease”

Perhaps we should write laws against people who have bad hearts? After all, that ticker is a real time bomb. Ooooh…I said the ‘b’ word.