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Community, Places and Environment Stories About Guns

The Mass Murder Pandemic

Lucien Roberts July 13, 2023
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I want to talk about fishing with dynamite and hunting wild game with assault weapons. Both seem like good ways to level the playing field. However, the former is illegal in Virginia; the latter is permitted in Virginia only when the assault weapon is fitted to hold no more than three shells. That just doesn’t seem fair to us humans.

Fishing with dynamite is prohibited because it kills marine creatures indiscriminately.  Hunting wild game with full-capacity assault weapons is prohibited, too, for similar reasons.  In Virginia, an assault weapon must be modified to shoot no more than three bullets for hunting any animal…except humans.

And so here we are.   Bluegill and smallmouth bass are more worthy of protection than humans.  It is okay to hunt humans – let’s call it what it is – but not deer, with full-capacity assault weapons.  That bears repeating.  It is legal to hunt with a full-capacity assault weapon in Virginia as long as the only thing you are hunting is people.

Hand grenades are illegal because they kill indiscriminately, yet full-magazine assault weapons are legal.  Rationalize that one.

I just don’t get it.

Rather than re-share statistics on the assault weapon pandemic, let’s agree our country has a gun problem.

Too many community leaders are standing on the sidelines; you might be one of them.  It’s safer on the sidelines, politically.  You don’t risk alienating the far right.  Here’s the thing, though: many of your employees and citizens think you are a coward.  Just as my state senator will lose my vote come November unless she levels the assault weapon playing field between turkeys and humans, you run the risk of losing support when you remain on the sidelines.  Act now, before your community becomes the next mass murder statistic.

I generally support the Second Amendment.  What I do not support is the bastardized interpretation of it, the daily mass murders, and the societal impact.  Mental health is a real concern, and resources need to be dedicated to prevention.  What we don’t discuss enough is the mental health of first graders who practice active shooter drills, the mental health of those who have been victims of or witnesses to mass shooting, and the long-term emotional and financial costs of such.  Think of the lives irrevocably changed by random shootings.  Think about the emotional burnout of those who treat the victims (and if you are on the sidelines, think about how many resent you for not using your position in the community to make a difference).

As a steward of the community and an advocate for a healthier community, you should lead from the front.  That’s what real leaders do.

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