Kevin Baker died last month in Chicago.
Kevin was a young man, 19 years old and attending Harold Washington College in Chicago. Gunman wanted his cell phone. He gave it to them. As the two armed men walked away, one turned around and shot Kevin, in the head. He died. Why? Kevin had family, a reason to succeed in life, a drive to go to college and years of living ahead of him. It was cut short, like so many lives in this country.
Why? What are we all collectively missing here? Do we think that it will not affect us, that there will be no consequence for in action against this? It is not an isolated, unique incident. It is happening more and more and more. So where does it end? How do we get a handle on this problem and change the future of this nation? We must collectively take responsiblity for the Kevin Bakers of this country. We must examine ourselves and take everyone of those Sandy Hook children to our breast and move forward on all of their behalfs. We take responsiblity. That means working from square one to the change the gun culture mentality of this country.
I am a FOID card carrier. There are guns in our family, there is skeet shooting and target shooting. Many of the people I know have experience with guns, they use guns for recreational purposes. They don't hoard them, they don't stockpile. None of them own automatics and none of them find themselves incapable of allowing a background check, or would be aghast at paying for or being tested to get a license, none of them would allow their weapons to deliberately fall into the hands of criminals or crazy people by intention, they are responsible. That is the leap here isn't it? More regulation doesn't scare us, it doesn't make us stockpile for the zombie apocalypse. We would not care if assault weapons were outlawed. We would not be concerned if the government found it necessary to fingerprint us, photograph us and know how many guns we had and for what purpose. We have nothing to hide. We are not the ones murdering children. We are not commiting robberies and we are not "standing" our ground, hallucinating about our rights, our power and our ability to kill people. The earlist leaders of the NRA felt the same way. So what really happened? More corporate greed and propaganda, that is what. It is and continues to be the politics of fear. Other countries don't see it that way, but for some reason, the US does.
Why? What is everyone afraid of here? There is a great deal of racism that is active now since we voted in a black president for two terms. That is being fired up by the conservative right who have incited people against this president and used rascism to light the match to burn this country down. That is part of it. There is also economic problems and job shortages in this country, the corporate kings sent job overseas, gave away our economy and robbed the middle class of their ability to function. What does that mean? More people out of work, no income, no homes, not buying and the strangle hold continues, the frustration mounts and crimes increase. How come there are so many countries that do not have these problems? Mom's Demand Action is just one group out of many addressing these issues surrounding gun violence. "As mothers, we must send a message NOW that our children's lives are not disposable, and we will not tolerate a Congress that asks children and women to stand up to gunmen because they are too weak to stand up to the gun lobby." Act today and every day: http://momsdemandaction.org/take-action/ Here is a short conversation about this, prompted by Kevin's death and the organization Mom's Demand Action.
Jake: "Guns are more strictly regulated in Chicago than just about anywhere else in the U.S. . . What kind of action are these moms demanding? I checked out the link and the first thing they are suggesting is that we "Call your representatives in Congress and demand that they support common-sense measures like background checks to curb gun violence." I have to wonder if there are really people out there who actually thinks the guys who shot this kid purchased their guns legally and might have been in anyway hindered from committing violent crime by background checks."
Terry: "It's not just Kevin Baker, it's thousands of kids. Their deaths don't matter? Unregistered guns are a part of the problem. Because we can't do it all in one fell swoop, we should do nothing and forget about background checks? Not on my watch..."
Terry: "Sheila ..., care to weigh in on this one?"
Jake: "The majority of gun violence occurs in the areas with the strictest Gun Control Laws. I'm not suggesting we do NOTHING, but I'm also not a fan of "Let's just do SOMETHING" especially if that something isn't going to affect any kind of meaningful change in the problem. Background checks for vehicle purchases wouldn't stop people from stealing cars, why do we think background checks for gun purchases will stop people from getting illegal guns? I would support common sense legislation if I saw any, but background checks (which are already the law in Illinois) don't affect people who are trying to find a gun with the intent to commit crime."
Sheila: http://www.rawstory.com/.../west-virginia-gun-enthusiast.../ West Virginia gun enthusiast kills two men without warning in mix-up over property line | The... www.rawstory.com A West Virginia man who deputies say had a large number of weapons shot and killed two men over the weekend and then wrongly told police that they were trespassing on his property.
Sheila: "The best thing that can happen is more gun control. Make it difficult for everyone to get a gun, especially those who are mentally ill, those who purchase at gun shows. I never listen to people talk about gun control or gun use without benefit of reputable statistics. Japan has literally no murders from guns, why? Strict gun laws. All change for the positive on anything that is needed starts with people moving toward it with the idea to make change. Small changes occur first. I carry a FOID card, we own guns. No assault weapons. Sport shooting is one thing, killing people quite another. We force people to get licenses to drive a car, we force them to purchase insurance. If we did that with guns that would make more people legal."
Dee: "Every hour of every day 1 child is in the emergency room for a gun related accident. Why is that not enough for people to care?" Terry: "I have fired a Ruger, Beretta, Smith & Wesson and Colt...You don't hear much about women going off the handle and murdering indiscriminately with a gun...I don't ever recall hearing about female mass shooters, Mike...what is it with guys? I'm just wondering because it came up for me with the article Sheila posted."
Sheila: "As people who have no jobs become more desperate, if the middle class continues to disappear, gun violence will escalate fueled in part by racist judgments, and the idea that they don't give a damn. If human life that is considered cheap in any culture there is always a rise in violence, exploitation and fear."
Terry:"I have enjoyed target shooting. People are people, NOT targets."
Sheila:" Like all the attacks on women about their reproductive issues, that rape is not a bad thing, that domestic violence is nothing to worry about, that women are just problems in general for those in the "know", how does anyone think that does not have an effect on women? Their lives, the lives of their children, society in general is on a destructive course based on the indifference we are being forced to develop against the notion that violence isn't wrong or that more than half the society does not have a brain in it's head to make decisions about their own bodies. The problem with all of this is that it does not stop here, it allows other nations license to do what the once big and great US does. Guess what? Most European countries are rejecting a lot of what is happening here, from this stuff on guns to women's issues, to GMO's etc. So "who's the bitch now?" We are just a bunch of suckers being manipulated by some kind of greed which wants us to buy their products, their bullshit, their paranoia and make them richer. Well, some people are tired of it. They see the damage and they understand it. Some people do not agree, they are blinded by hatred or unable to discern the danger. Until they get personally touched by gun violence, or their relative gets raped or something actually touches something that matters to them, they will just keep getting excited about Justin Bieber, or who gets the rose from the bachelor or what Honey Boo Boo is up to. Modern society is under the influence of propaganda and corporate agenda."
Dee: "Spend 3.5 minutes of your life and watch this report. http://abcnews.go.com/.../hidden-camera-experiment... Video: Hidden Camera Experiment: Young Kids Drawn to Guns abcnews.go.com Parents are shocked to see how their kids react to finding a gun in an unattended classroom."
Dee: "Modern society is under the influence of propaganda and corporate agenda." Well said. I find it so hard to believe how many people believe ANYTHING thrown at them. Check the facts or at minimum, use reliable sources. I love the internet and our modern ways of communication, but I'm afraid it has made dummies out of most Americans."
Sheila: http://www.rawstory.com/.../u-s-murder-rate-higher-than.../ U.S. murder rate higher than nearly all other developed countries: FBI data | The Raw Story www.rawstory.com Violent crime in the United States remained close to two-decade lows last year."
Dee: "Full story on Friday, 20/20 I think. Shows kids that come from homes with guns, parents have taught them about guns, teacher reinforces this and the kid still picks up the gun and looks down the barrel."
Sheila:" http://www.theatlantic.com/.../a-land-without.../260189/ A Land Without Guns: How Japan Has Virtually Eliminated Shooting Deaths www.theatlantic.com In part by forbidding almost all forms of firearm ownership, Japan has as few as two gun-related homicides a year."
Hope this leaves some of you thinking. There is a problem in this nation, we are being conditioned and moved along a path to desensitize us to violence, to objectify and control women and to allow corporations to govern us for their own personal gain and agenda. Some of these people are even trying to bring back child labor! Fools are we. Mighty and great fools are we now. They wanted to outlaw critical thinking in the schools of Texas a few years back. Do you know why? They want to raise up a whole generation of people who will not question authority or challenge it in any way. There is good law and bad law, there is good government and bad government, there are lobbyists in favor of the people and those in favor of the corporations. If you cannot think, analyze and vote, then you cannot change the current course and change it we must. We all have to think, to understand. So tear yourself away from Honey Boo Boo and study up, use the internet while it is still free and open and learn as much as you can, don't trust Fox news, or any outlet that is suspect regarding their agenda, mix it up a bit, look at pros and cons. Discuss with your friends, and neighbors and vote. Think, while your mind is still your own.
Copyright 2014 SheilaTGTG55