HOW MANY PEOPLE HAVE BEEN KILLED BY GUN VIOLENCE IN THE U. S. SINCE “SANDY HOOK”?

Since the Sandy Hook Elementary School Massacre, one year ago today, there have been approximately 33,273 (a wild-aXX guess) killed in the U. S. from Gun Violence. But hey, the night is still young. Who knows what the final total will be by day-break?

The Shootings at Sandy Hook, in Connecticut, started when a deranged and reclusive Young Man first killed his Mother at home with a military-Style Assault Rifle (semi-automatic AR-15), and then proceeded to kill 20 mostly six-year old Children, plus six Teachers and Administrators, while they were trying to protect the Children. Many thought that America would finally take action. But, Congress and the NRA threw a wrench into that wishful thinking. Unfortunately, that train of thought has been locked in a vicious circle to nowhere for years.

Just since Sandy Hook, we have had: the point-black shot to the head of a toddler in a stroller in Brunswick, Ga. and a similar walk-up shot in the head to a six month-old Girl in Chicago (while her Father was changing her diaper on the front seat of his car); the killings at the Old Navy Yard, in Washington, D. C.; then, today at a school in Arapaho County , Colorado (just a few miles away from Denver, Aurora and Columbine), the street shooting near the Empire State Building, in NYC; and it goes on-and on, with reckless shootings of mostly innocent people. These killings have occurred, regardless of sex, age or economic classification. Insanity seems to have no bounds.

To somewhat sum-up the mindset of some Gun-Owners (especially in rural areas), there is the case of the five-year old Boy who shot and killed his two-year old Sister this past May, in Rural Kentucky. Two quotes, from the Mother and Country Corner, to me, are just mind-boggling. The Mom said that they “didn’t think the rifle was loaded”, referring to the small gun that was just leaning (unlocked) against a cabinet. (Heard that before, huh?) And, the Coroner said: “It’s a Crickett. It’s a little rifle for a kid … The little boy’s used to shooting the little gun.”. He also said something to the effect that the boy liked “playing” with it. Really, guns as toys?

Recently, the House of Representatives had no trouble in voting overwhelmingly to ban the possession of undetectable (to metal detecters) guns, basically made of wood or plastic. I believe the reason that the NRA did not lobby against such Legislation–as long as it did not include metal components–was that they are not made or sold by the Gun Industry. Rather, they might be considered as its competition. Any other weapons controls, however, on products where the “Big Gun”s” (the NRA’s silent partners) can make a profit, will be lobbied against very strongly.

It appears that every single segment of America has come out in favor of, at least, some weapons control and, perhaps, background checks. Parents, some politicians, NRA Members, the 95% of Gun Owners who do not belong to the NRA, Republicans, Democrats, Independents, etc., all seem to poll overwhelmingly in favor of establishing some safeguards against the Gun-Whackos. But, the NRA, representing its silent financial backers, lobbies Congress quite strongly with considerable campaign contributions. That’s the Butter that buys the Congressional Votes.

Think about it: a twenty year-old shooting First Graders in the assumed sanctuary of their school; walk-up shootings of infants; drive-by shootings of Young Kids in the crossfire of gang warfare; hunters murdering other hunters near a duck blind; (Former) Vice President Dick Cheney shooting a hunting companion, luckily only with bird shot and, earlier this year, a former Navy SEAL (who was considered “The Marksman” by other Special Ops) was shot and killed by a “friend” on a gun range. WHEN WILL THE INSANITY END?

If Gun Violence, either accidental, on purpose or by deranged people are of concern to you, there are several things you can do:

1. Call, write or Email your Senator, Congressman and Local Officials, and let them know your feelings;

2. If you have Children, Grandchildren or friends who do, remind them that the Children are going to eventually become aware of such Gun Violence–especially when it is in a school–any school, or in their local Neighborhood (i. e. Chicago);

3. Talk to School Officials about arranging age-appropriate orientation at your Loved Ones’ School. Teachers should become aware of the potential symptoms of any emotional changes that might require the expertise and help of Guidance Counselors or others with Child Behavioral backgrounds.

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