Right now, as I write parents, community, children and families are mourning this tragedy and are dealing with the first few hours of shock. Parents are holding tight to their children who just this morning they sent "safely" off to school. Already blogs, news coverage and TV shows are talking about this. Already the words are flying about gun rights and safety. I used to be firmly in the camp of believing anyone with a gun was an idiot and then I married a man from Montana.
Once of the first times I interacted with my mother in law when Seth and I were dating, I noticed she had a pistol strapped to her side and was marching with intent up to the barn. I remember asking him what she was doing and he replied putting a sick or injured animal down. I stated "Sure hope I don't get sick around here." Some of you may gasp at a farmer or rancher putting one of their own critters down, but out here sometimes a vet cannot get here quickly and you cannot allow an animal to suffer.
I remember hours and hours of heated discussion between Seth and I about having guns in our home, and when the kids were small he respected my discomfort enough to keep them across the driveway at his moms house. Eventually I took a gun safety class and became more familiar with them and gleaned a deeper respect and understanding of this tradition of guns.
As I see postings on the sites about this current tragedy in Chardon, Ohio, I am already struck with how this is rapidly becoming a gun argument. I've even discovered the favorite term for those who believe in the second amendment seems to be "Those Yahoos"
So, this YAHOO is going to weigh in just a little. Guns have to be carried by someone with intent or negligence to be dangerous (most accidents involve some sort of negligence such as not being stored properly or at the very least tragic human error ). The shootings at schools and other tragic situations are awful and just plain heart breaking. I just get plain tired of folks using it as an excuse to want to ban guns. Now granted in well populated areas I can understand the concern with guns, but still hold to the fact we have the right to legally own them and I equally respect your right not to!
In Montana law enforcement is anywhere from 15 minutes to 2 hours away.Just last week a wolf was seen running through a well populated city and I have neighbors who have had to protect their goats from a Mountain Lion. I have also had the unfortunate experience of pulling a gun out with the intent to defend my home and small children, in order to warn someone with ill intent not to enter my home. They thought better of coming in after hearing my verbal warning and the chickchick of the shotgun. To this day I would repeat the same course of action, and would not lose an ounce of sleep over it. Having grown up the way I did, I almost feel shocked writing that.
So in the event of these tragedies when one person uses something we all have the right to own, to cause harm, it is natural and normal to want to go over board and shout the evils of guns. Evils come in all sorts of packages. Let's lay the blame where it belongs and use some common sense. It's kind of like saying stop all sales of cars because so many people die in them. There are even people who intentionally hurt people with cars but you don't hear everyone shouting...stop the spread of car ownership. jeesh!
Let's keep this what it is about and that is a tragic situation which deserves attention.The focus should be on helping a small town in our country mourn and improving school safety. Keep the focus where it belongs...on the families and communities affected. Those with ill intent will always find a way to cause harm even if we lose our second amendment rights. I know tonight I will hold my kids just a little bit tighter...and I am really thinking I am going to go to the kitchen and do what I do best....makes something sweet and wonderful for them to come home to so we can celebrate what we have as another family far away in a little town in Ohio mourns the loss of a loved one.