The world we live in has changed a great deal in the last decade. More and more people look to brightly lit screens to solve their problems. Video games, regardless of how much fun they can be, are at times incredibly violent and deliberately offensive. Movies and television are running out of envelops to push. Worst of all, the media at large picks up on all of these things and exploits whatever story they’ve chosen so that we—the ignorant and unintelligent public—can find the appropriate source to place our blame, since that most certainly should never fall on our own shoulders.
Take the polarizing issue of guns, for example.
It would appear that every month or so there is a fresh story unfolding in the news, a sordid tale of a troubled man who decided he would hire a gun to do some killing and that this gun would be the problem and not the man himself. The issues of the man’s fractured psyche or medicated state don’t factor in, nor does his history with pornography or having irresponsible parents to teach him; the issue is always the gun. Forget that this man was abused or that he learned early on that he needed only to blame a bully, or his absentee father or even “the system” because he used a gun to murder people. The gun, in the end, is at fault.
This is the conclusion we are too often auspiciously led to, at the end of these low-points in media coverage. All blame is laid at the feet of an inanimate object, one that can do no more damage than a stick of butter unless rendered active by the hands of a human being. Guns, with their threatening appearance and killing ways, want us all to die without good reason.
Since you’re reading this you’re probably not an idiot, and it’s unlikely you subscribe to the idea that guns are used solely to murder and that all responsibility rests with guns alone. Likewise it’s safe to assert that you don’t believe most gun-owners are a danger to society. You’d be correct. But if the media had their way, you’d be in the wrong; that much is clear by their message of gun control.
Very few people in America condone reckless violence, whether a gun is involved or not. Fewer still will ever resort to using excessive violence to prove a point or resolve an issue. At the end of the day, most people want a safer world and a kinder society. But those out there, the men (and occasionally women) who lend their psychotic breaks to the media for primetime coverage, those that kill others not in self-defense but due to a building of typically unseen events…what of those men?
Wake up, America. It’s these men that are to blame, not their preferred method of delivering violence to others. Forget for a second that by punishing the few it’s the many that are forced to have their rights removed. Banning guns because of the handful of offenders punishes the millions that exercise their 2nd amendment rights safely and legally. This argument has been made enough; it’s valid and shouldn’t be up for debate—the minority shouldn’t overtake the majority in most cases, this being one of them.
What need be addressed are factors that lead perpetrators of violent crimes to commit crimes in the first place. Research time and dollars should be applied to the why, not the how. Finding and then fixing the “why” eliminates the likelihood of the “how”. But in order for that to happen other things need to be addressed first.
Fix the public education system—teach kids that they are responsible for themselves, just like everyone else. Teach the basics, building blocks for future success. Remove the negative influence of the politically correct counselors and revert back to the days when it was okay to knock out the bully without fear of reproach.
Parents need to step up and teach their kids about morals and ethics, that all bodies on this planet are to be respected, that no one has the right to take a life unjustly and that there is never a good reason for doing so. They should teach about sex, how it relates to life and the detrimental impact it can have when depicted falsely, like what is found in pornography. Parents should also educate kids on what it means to be held accountable for one’s actions, always, and they should teach that being a victim is undesirable and that one should never willingly allow themselves to play that part in society.
Lastly, the media needs to be either restructured or ignored. This includes social media as well. Giving into the highly-sensationalized exploitation of all things has created a society terrified to make a wrong move or to disagree, lest one finds themselves on the outs regarding the way “everyone else” thinks. It’s farcical insanity, the way the public has been led along by the media, and the second we make the assumption we’re getting the straight facts is the very same second we’ve forfeited the fight.
We’re not a nation of enslaved minds unless we allow it; these are just some of the ways we can start to right the ship.
Currently the media is heavily promoting that guns are hurting people. We’re not at the behest of guns, rather the statistically small chance of being hurt or killed by a person who might use a gun to do their bidding. Ignore the blame and seek the truth. If we’re not going to step up and fix the “why” maybe we shouldn’t be so up in arms about the “how.”
Food for thought.
Image: Courtesy of: http://forensicsciencelaw12.wikispaces.com/Firearms
Matt Daniels is a proud husband and father from Salt Lake City, who when not writing about politics or social issues spends his time writing comedic articles for various publications under the moniker Gary the Unicorn. Matt is also an accomplished musician, rabid Utah Jazz fan and supporter of the arts.