by Tom Buglio, West Chester
America is reeling from a man-made disaster of unspeakable violence: the Las Vegas gun massacre.
How do we come to grips with a man who stockpiles more than 40 high powered guns with the intent of killing as many people as possible with a shower of automatic gun fire? 59 dead, 527 injured in 10 minutes of terror….how does something like this happen?
As far as we know, the shooter bought the guns legally. Some of the guns were automatic weapons, which fire like machine guns. Some of the weapons were semi-automatic rifles that were modified to shoot like a machine gun. Although heavily regulated and not manufactured since 1989, automatic weapons are legal, as are modifiers for semi-automatics to make them shoot like automatic weapons.
Why? How is it than any citizen needs to own firepower that is so dangerous in the wrong hands? This disturbed man was able to get off thousands of rounds in the space of 10 minutes. THERE IS NO JUSTIFICATION FOR MILITARY-STYLE WEAPONS TO BE LEGAL!
Australia suffered its worst mass shooting with a semi-automatic weapon at Port Arthur in 1997 with 37 killed. Within 3 months, Australia banned semi automatic rifles and paid the public to give up these dangerous weapons, destroying over 500,000 guns. Since then, there have been no mass shootings in Australia.
Will our country have the will needed to overcome the gun lobby and do what is necessary to do the same thing? We can’t even pass Universal Background Checks on all gun sales, including private sales, which even 80% of gun owners agree with. The gun lobby will say it is not the gun, it is the shooter. I say that our country does not have a monopoly on dangerous people. At the very least, we can ban the most dangerous of weapons, including confiscating automatics and banning semi-automatic rifles like the AR-15 and AK-47, along with their modifiers like bump stocks that make them fire like automatics.
Unless the vast majority of people in this country rise up and demand serious change to save lives, the next mass shooting is right around the corner.