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Michelle Kraus Headshot

America Is Nervous -- We Must Lay Down Our Arms

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There are far too many loose guns floating around the United States of America. What are we doing? This is not the world our forefathers conceived when they wrote the Second Amendment. Violence begets violence, and with no reasonable measures for arms control, our country is rapidly becoming militarized. The police are reacting to threats. Every angry or troubled soul could be carrying a concealed weapon and usually is. Yeah, yeah, yeah, we have the right to bear arms per the Second Amendment, but that was signed into law way before assault rifles were even a glimmer on the horizon. We are at an impasse in our country, society and culture, and must find a way to resolution.

Indeed guns are part of large sectors of our country often passed down through the generations -- father to son. But it seems that our reality has changed. Too many novices are running wild and getting access to high powered weaponry. Last week, another young, white, mentally impaired woman was killed by the police right in San Jose, California. The weapon she was brandishing turned out to have been a power drill that had been painted to look like an assault weapon. Maybe, if the culture wasn't running wild with illegal guns, the murder rate and gang activity so high in this locale -- the police would have reacted differently. Yikes we sure don't know and thank goodness don't have to make those decisions every day.

Look, the economy is still in the toilet for many Americans. Times are tough and income inequality still prevails. Funds have been cut from mental health services in many states, and unfortunately many are going untreated -- proverbially falling through the cracks. Americans are nervous in this world of troubles. What's going to happen to them? Is the US going back to war? And if so where -- Iraq, Afghanistan, the Middle East, or even Russia? Will folks be able to afford gasoline if this happens? Why are hybrids so expensive? Is the next airplane going to fall from the sky and where? What does it take to stay safe and keep your family safe? Sadly, this is the environment that allows racism and prejudice to fester and get a toe hold to dig in. Certainly, we know that we have got tough choices coming down the road. Turning the police into soldiers is not the answer as evidenced in Ferguson, Missouri, nor is denying generational family traditions. But maybe there's just an opening big enough to consider enacting the simplest of laws that control the supply chain of weapons in this country. You know, we lived through Prohibition, and now track liquor and its sale. Marijuana is leaning toward legalization around the country. Can't we step back from the random acts of violence in our streets, towns and cities? This might be the time to take action on gun control safety, and really turn a search light on what's become of our public safety officers. We have to do better than this.