Life through a gun barrel



July 12, 2016
Life through a gun barrel

FREQUENCY: Violence has flared up in Hanover Park

Violence in society linked to relaxed firearm laws.

I’ve never liked guns! I fired one once a long time ago for a story I was doing. I didn’t get the fascination and I still don’t.

I had one pointed at me once by a misguided good Samaritan. I was having a particular loud and public argument with my partner, when a young guy thought he was rescuing her. He pointed his gun at my nose, vomited several choice four-letter words at me and threatened to shoot. It became very clear to me that night that guns come with a lifetime supply of sterk gevriet that you otherwise wouldn’t have.

I mention this because the latest shootings in America, Hanover Park and Bonteheuwel are like a re-run of a really bad movie that I’m desperately trying to understand.

How is it possible for a human being to take another person’s life so easily?

And why doesn’t one deadly shooting lead to laws that prevent it from happening again?

Instead, we now have shootings in the US every other week.

Mass shootings, sniper shootings, accidental shootings, gunfights, robbery shootings, shooting murders and of course the cold blooded execution-style shootings.

It has become ridiculously easy to just point a piece of metal at someone, pull a trigger and seconds later that human being is dead.

I have been reading up on America’s gun laws and did you know it’s easier to buy a gun at a corner shop in the States, than it is for me to buy a Granadilla Fruit Sherbet sucker in summer.

In fact, they do have laws that make it illegal for you to buy a gun on behalf of someone else.

But you are allowed to buy it and then immediately sell it to another person without knowing anything about them.

And American politicians can’t do a thing about it, because the country has an extremely powerful gun lobby group that has done everything in its power to keep the gun laws as loose as possible.

The FBI is not even allowed to legally have a database of guns and who owns them.

It’s laws like these that made the fatal shooting of police officers in Dallas last week possible.

And it’s the fear of being shot that may have had something to do with police officers shooting dead two black men for no apparent reason.

One thing is certain, America’s gun culture is reaching a tipping point where something is going to give.

Unfortunately, if Donald Trump becomes their president, we’ll see more unnecessary shootings, because he supports most of the nonsense gun law arguments.

I also don’t get why American police officers aren’t trained to shoot at the leg, or shoulder. It seems they only ever aim for the head or torso, places that are almost certain to cause death.

And here at home, things are as grave, with another flare-up of gang-related shootings in Hanover Park and Bontas.

Instead of celebrating Eid last week, a family had to bury their teenage boy. And two men were shot dead and an eight-year-old girl was hospitalised after being hit by a stray bullet in Hanover Park.

I was very happy to hear that residents gave the cops tip-offs that led to two arrests. We definitely need more residents with the guts to piemp on gangsters, because it appears we have lost our humanity.

Can gangsters not see that a 15-year-old boy has hardly lived and still has his entire future ahead of him?

We are the only mammals on the planet that do this to our own kind. Maybe the others chose not to grow smart, so that they wouldn’t end up killing each other over plentiful weed, a disagreeable belief or a shiny piece of rock.

Maybe we aren’t the smartest mammals on the planet after all.

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