Tuesday, January 11, 2011

It Happens

Every now and then there's a shooting.  This time, in Tuscon, AZ, last Saturday, a nine-year-old girl died of a chest wound because she came out to meet her congresswoman at an event in a Safeway parking lot. Reporters say the third-grader wanted to learn how government works: quite a learning. From Lincoln to McKinley to Martin Luther King to the Kennedys to Kent State, to Reagan and James Brady, guns have gone off in politics. And not just for political reasons: at the post office, at school, buying a hamburger, filling the gas tank, any one of us could be wounded or killed by gunfire.  It happens in America from time to time, and we're always so surprised.

Well, the shooter's former professors weren't surprised. And by the way, where are his parents? Who is responsible for this particular incompetent young man, probably paranoid schizophrenic, who kept a safe(!) in his apt. with a letter from his Congresswoman from 2007? You could start with Ronald Reagan, I suppose, who de-institutionalized mentally ill. I'm sure the NRA and the Supreme Court have a share of blame. An adult American has the legal right to be insane and the legal right to buy a Glock 9 mm.  Although there's a nagging feeling this shooting could have been prevented, we can't quite think how.

Maybe we'll think shootings are predictable. I predict we'll see no sweeping gun control, but we'll see more armed security at political events. Perhaps the incident will deflate some wind out of Sarah Palin's sails. And then we'll go on to other news until the next time it happens.


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