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What can I, as an adult, do to push the US towards more gun control?

Author : Marie

Submitted : 2018-02-26 07:21:53    Popularity:     

Tags: push  adult  control  gun  

I'm sick and tired of kids getting shot at school. A shooting happens at least once a week. I'm not a parent, or a teacher, or do anything that generally involves kids and students. I therefore don't have my finger on the pulse of student issu

Answers:

Marie, you're missing the POINT, just like everyone else who's calling for more gun control. Restricting the rights of LAW ABIDING gun owners ( and most gun owners ARE law abiding) is NOT THE WAY TO SOLVE THE PROBLEM of school shootings and other mass killings. IT JUST WON'T WORK, PERIOD. It has already been TRIED, multiple times, and it HASN'T worked up until now, and it SHOULD BE OBVIOUS to you that banning guns outright isn't a solution.If we as a nation and as a society are really serious about stopping school shootings like the one in Florida, then we need to take a MULTI-FACETED approach to the problem. I'm going to outline some action steps which America and Americans as a whole need to take to finally put an end to this terrible scourge.

1. Get out of our state of national DENIAL about the REAL causes of these shootings. The shooting last week in Florida wasn't about GUNS, it was about MENTAL ILLNESS and BULLYING, just as every SINGLE ONE of the other mass school shootings have been over the last 20 or 30 years. Unless and until this cycle of NATIONAL DENIAL is finally broken, and we get our heads out of our asses as a nation and recognize the relationships between bullying, mental illness and shootings, these tragedies will happen REPEATEDLY.

2. FIX our BROKEN mental health system. This is going to require MILLIONS, if not BILLIONS of dollars to accomplish, but the end result will be that people who desperately NEED mental health treatment will finally be able to GET IT. We also need to take steps to ELIMINATE the SOCIAL STIGMA which is attached to mental illness, at EVERY LEVEL of government and society. And mental illness needs to be treated as a PUBLIC HEALTH PROBLEM, NOT A LAW ENFORCEMENT PROBLEM. At the present time, nearly 90% of all prison inmates in the US have a DIAGNOSED MENTAL ILLNESS. Members of minority groups are the worst affected by this tragic statistic, and the numbers of mentally ill in this segment of the prison population are growing, not decreasing. Treating mental illness as an illness, and not as an excuse to arrest people and put them in jail, would go a long, long way towards helping to reduce the incidence of gun violence and violent crime.

3. We need to pass COMMON SENSE laws which regulate what can and cannot be posted or displayed on the INTERNET. These laws need to be formulated with input from the CEO's of the top internet service providers, as well as leaders in the tech industry, mental health, law enforcement, and education fields. These laws need to be BIPARTISAN or NONPARTISAN in both scope and language. Doing this will go a long way towards stopping cyberbullying and harassment, which are both at record levels nationwide right now. According the FBI, every 5 to 7 minutes on any given school day, a child or teen is being cyberbullied or harassed somewhere in America. That's every 5 TO 7 MINUTES, Marie. Think about that for a few minutes. You mention that you have nieces and a nephew in school right now. I'm willing to bet that they've experienced bullying or harassment online or from people they know, and that they have friends or classmates who've had the same thing happen to them. And passing laws which restrict violent or offensive content on the internet will have another benefit too, in that it will help to reduce the incidence of terrorism and copycat crimes.

4. We desperately NEED EDUCATION reform. Specifically, we need to take steps to REFORM THE CULTURE which is present at most American public schools so that bullying, and in particular CYBERBULLYING, become less socially ACCEPTABLE. We need to BRING BACK character education in schools. Part of the reason why school shootings keep happening is because kids today aren't taught respect for authority and rules from DAY ONE, like they should be. EVERY KID in America should know how to sing the National Anthem by the time he or she leaves kindergarten, but very few do. Likewise, all first graders should know how to say the Pledge by the time they leave that grade, and they should be doing that EVERY DAY. Kids should be REQUIRED to address adults using proper forms, such as mister, miss, ms., ma'am, sir, etc. And kids also need to be required to say please, thank you, yes sir, no sir, yes ma'am, no ma'am, and the like EVERY DAY. It's all about showing RESPECT- for adults, for authority figures, for their friends, AND for THEMSELVES. We need to adopt a NATIONWIDE DRESS CODE which is used at EVERY SCHOOL, no matter WHERE it's located. This will eliminate competitions over dress and looks, which are a major cause of bullying just by themselves.

5. As part of education reform, we need to ELIMINATE the use of suspensions and expulsions as disciplinary tactics. One of the things that last week's shooting has done is to point out the UTTER USELESSNESS of these tactics. THEY JUST DON'T WORK, period. The main reason WHY this particular shooting happened was PRECISELY BECAUSE the shooter, Nikolas Cruz, got expelled from school. Cruz was and is someone with a long history of severe mental illness and behavioral issues. And evidence has started to emerge over the last couple of days which indicates that he may very well be DEVELOPMENTALLY DISABLED, too. He was in a psychotic rage when he went on his rampage- that was most likely why he was able to do what he did. But that rage wore off pretty quickly, and since then he's been so depressed that the authorities have had to put a suicide watch on him. That's likely why he confessed in open court the first time he was there, in fact. He probably believes that he has nothing left to live for. I'm sure that there are those who'd say he's right to think that, too. I believe that if Cruz hadn't been expelled in the first place, this particular shooting might have been AVOIDED entirely. Expelling kids DOESN'T SOLVE problems, Marie. Neither does suspending them. If you take an angry, mentally ill kid like Cruz and expel him, you're only going to make him even MORE angry, and even more determined to get back at whoever put him in that state. That's the LESSON which the school administrators didn't GET, and they STILL DON'T. You CAN'T SOLVE PROBLEMS, including discipline problems, by sending kids who have them away, especially when ( as in the case of the state of Florida) there are few if any resources available in the community which will allow these kids to continue their educations and get the help and treatment they need. According to the American Bar Association ( which regulates the legal profession in the USA) the "school to prison pipeline" is operating at record levels right now. They estimate that around three quarters of all kids who get expelled from school have at least ONE felony on their record by the time they're 25 years old- assuming they live that long, that is. Many kids don't. Instead, they fall victim to drugs, alcohol, and disease. Because they have no job skills and no ability to work, they end up homeless. And they are easy prey for a wide range of groups, including everyone from the KKK to ISIS to the MS-13. Kids who don't have to go to school any more make easy pickings for the recruiters from these groups, who often promise kids large sums of money in exchange for their "loyalty". And I'm sure you can see where this leads, Marie. It's what helps fuel terror cells around the globe, and it's why the US and its allies have had so much trouble putting a stop to dangerous groups like ISIS. So if we really want to stop shootings and global terrorism, one of the things we need to do as a nation is put a STOP to this awful "school to prison" pipeline, and curb or eliminate the dropout rate and expulsion rate.

I'll close by stating that none of the ideas for stopping school shootings listed here have anything to do with gun control or with banning guns. I've chosen instead to focus on stopping these tragedies by stopping the things which CAUSE them in the first place. THAT is much better way to deal with this issue than just simply passing more knee jerk, draconian gun laws which aren't going to work.

The very laws you are pushing have created gun free zones, that makes it like shooting fish in a barrel.
The better approach is more guns that can shoot back, or had you noticed these shootings only happen in gun free zones.
The Texas church shooting could have been far worse if not for an armed citizen shooting back( a former NRA instructor). The shooter dropped his rifle and ran like a rabbit when fired on himself.
I grew up with guns in schools and never a shooting. Yes, very saddening when innocent lives are lost, makes me so mad I want to sit with a big machine gun to protect those not able to protect themselves.
We do need functioning gun laws, there are too many that are irrational passed in the heat of the moment.
Many want to ban guns overlooking the fact they provide the very blanket of security they sleep under each night.
Laws have created these gun free zones, seems the better way is going forward, not backing with mirrors.
NRA supports reasonable gun laws and safety above all.
Sadly, so many expect government to solve the problems. Practically no problems when people solved them on their own.
Surely you see the 22,000+ gun laws on the books are not working, obviously not the right solution.
Guns can work for us with the 'right' control, it just takes safe rational thinking to make it right.

Always vote for local, state and national elections. The state legislatures and courts are packed with conservatives thanks to Gerrymandering. Trump only won because of how districts are drawn. Get a Democratic majority back in at all levels and election maps will be fairer. Loose gun laws are almost always the fault of Republicans. Vote for progressive Democratic candidates.

Donate to pro gun-control causes. This is one: https://giffords.org/

Donate to help Democrats take back seats (local, state and national).

If you don't have money to donate, you could volunteer to help or you could at least attend local rallies.

Every mass shooting has happened in a gun free zone. Gun free zones tell shooters they will not be stopped and can kill as many as they want. No mass shooter chooses to go where someone can shoot back. Well trained and armed teachers that volunteer to be trained is the best defense since a guard cannot be everywhere in the school at once.

I like what Louie CK said about cell phones. Back in the day, kids tested their boundaries by being jerks face-to-face. They would see the other person's face and learn how to have empathy for them. Now, you get the gratification without having to empathize.

I still don't understand why we make fun of "psychos" even as adults. Someone who you see crying or having an anxiety attack, someone who might express their anger or frustration by becoming a metal-head and naming themselves "Lord Darkness Tear" we make fun of them and tell others not to talk to the "psycho." I'm not surprised when they freak out and hurt others.

As an adult, including if you have kids someday, you can prevent violence by understanding people who become violent from being misunderstood. Its rare that kids pop out of the womb ready to torture small animals. Suffice to say, something made them that way. Likely underlying malfunction festered under abuse and other stressors. You (we all) created the "psychos" we feel the need to dismiss from our tribe by labeling them as such.

And yet you are quite fine with babies being murdered just because they have not yet been born. And yet my grandfather and his classmates hunted on the way to and from school. They would stand their weapons in the corner during class. The worst they had to deal with was some guy coming in smelling of skunk. Nobody was afraid.

It all goes to goals, values and priorities. When a nation/society does not share goals, values and priorities these things will happen. I'm sorry if life is tough for you. You'll get used to it...or else...what's the alternative?

Try encouraging family values and valuing your community. People who value family and community don't go around shooting each other. Why? Because they actually "value" each other. It's not rocket science.

Getting rid of guns won't get rid of the problem. Diversity stinks! A nation/house divided cannot stand. Guess who is divided? Guess what's going to happen if we don't get our act together.

And you were worried about guns? It really can get worse...much worse.

Privatize it.

Many countries require gun owners to belong to a gun club, so let's put the NRA in charge.

They could use the background check list and mental health lists to determine if a person is disqualified, mandate a gun safety course, register owners, gun and ammunition purchases, and transfers, and provide information to the government only if there is a warrant or probable cause. And they could require safes to keep the guns in and provide insurance to compensate victims.

Incidentally, California requires a $100 psychiatric exam in order to get a carry permit. I think a lot of people could use one of those.

Get as many non-Republicans into political office as possible, at all levels of government (city, state, congress, senate, etc.)

The fewer Republicans in political office, the less influence the NRA will have over our government, and the easier it will be to pass common-sense gun laws.

Midterm elections are coming up this November. A large number of seats in both the Congress and Senate, as well as numerous local city and state races, will be on the ballot. VOTE. Get as many of your friends and family to vote.



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