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Colorado Massacre demands gun controls
By Ray Hanania
Southwest News-Herald Wed July 25, 2012 – James Holmes was not a criminal. He was an aspiring scientist. A regular person, 24 years old. Quirky, maybe. But there was nothing to suggest he was a potential mass murderer.
Except one thing. He purchased four weapons, a semi-automatic rifle, a shot gun and two hand guns. He bought those legally from local stores without much of a background check. Although in his case, a background check would not have raised any red flags to raise concerns.
He then ordered more than 6,000 rounds of ammunition off a web site online. Again. There were no reasons to suspect any criminal plans.
As we now know, he walked into a movie theater in Aurora, Colorado last Friday morning for the premier of the latest Batman movie “The Dark Knight Rises,” and he shot and killed in cold blood 12 innocent people and wounded 50 more.
He would have killed more but for the fact that his automatic weapon jammed.
Yet no one thinks we should have more stringent gun controls.
Why? Because this country is not run by Democracy. It is run by a tyrant named the National Rifle Association (NRA) which claims to protect the 2nd Amendment of the Constitution which was written some 221 years ago that guarantees the right of American to own a gun.
We didn’t have automatic weapons in 1791 when it was included in the Bill of Rights. We had muskets. Hand guns. Weapons that fired one bullet at a time, slowly.
When the pioneers were battling the Native Americans for control of this land, there was a need to have a gun for protection. America was a vulnerable nation and gunslingers roamed the dusty streets of the Wild, Wild West.
Of course, back then, innocent people and the guilty were strung up and hung by individuals who played the role of judge, jury and executioners. In our early nation, the Rule of Law was more of an Exception to the Rule.
Holmes bought a Glock pistol. Less than a week later, he upgraded to a shotgun. The following week he bought an AR-15, which was outlawed under the Assault Weapon Ban in 1994 that expired in 2004.
The Glock holds 17 to 33 bullets and can be fired rapidly. It is a “semi-automatic weapon.” The AR-15 can hold 40 to 100 bullets.
The NRA has brainwashed America into believing we need to have the ability to fire dozens of bullets without reloading to “protect ourselves” from criminals.
They always say “If we outlaw handguns, then only the outlaws will have handguns.”
James Homes was not an outlaw. But had we made it illegal to obtain semi-automatic weapons, his efforts to obtain guns might have raised additional red flags that were all missed because a trouble person can easily walk into a store and buy high powered weapons and even armored helmets and a bullet proof vest without even raising an eyebrow.
That’s why we need tougher gun laws. We need to make it so that at least for that segment of our population that shows now outward signs of criminal behavior, their purchase of heavy weapons would raise some eyebrows.
We won’t stop the criminals from getting guns, that’s true. But why make it so damn easy to kill someone in this country?
(Join Ray Hanania on radio this Sunday to talk about the Holmes massacre on 1240 AM WSBC and 14760 AM WCFJ Radio 8-10 am. www.RadioChicagoland.com.)
This post has already been read 53 times!
Hanania loves to write about American Arabs in politics, and focuses on Arab life in America.
Currently, he writes weekly columns on Middle East and American Arab issues for the Arab News in Saudi Arabia at www.ArabNews.com. He writes on American politics for the Des Plaines Valley News, Southwest News-Herald, The Regional News newspaper and the Reporter Newspapers. He also writes for the online websites TheArabDailyNews.com and NewsAmericaNetwork.com (Illinois News Network at IllinoisNewsNetwork.com).
Palestinian, American Arab and Christian, Hanania’s parents originate from Jerusalem and Bethlehem. Hanania began in journalism as an activist publishing Chicago’s first English-language American Arab Newspaper “The Middle Eastern Voice” from 1975 through 1977. In 1976, he was hired by the Chicago community newspaper The Southtown Economist (Daily Southtown) and in 1985 was hired by the Chicago Sun-Times and covered Chicago City Hall for both. In 1993, he launched the “The Villager” Newspapers which covered 12 Southwest Chicagoland suburban regions. In 2004, he published “The National Arab American Times” monthly newspaper which was distributed through 12,500 Middle East ethnic food stores in 48 American States.
Hanania is the recipient of four (4) Chicago Headline Club “Peter Lisagor Awards” for Column writing. In November 2006, he was named “Best Ethnic American Columnist” by the New American Media;In 2009, he received the prestigious Sigma Delta Chi Award for Writing from the Society of Professional Journalists. He is the recipient of the MT Mehdi Courage in Journalism Award. Hanania has also received two (2) Chicago Stick-o-Type awards from the Chicago Newspaper Guild, and in 1990 was nominated by the Chicago Sun-Times for a Pulitzer Prize for his four-part series on the Palestinian Intifada.
Hanania’s writings have been published in newspapers around the world. Formerly syndicated by Creators Syndicate, Hanania also has written news, features and Opinion Columns for Al Jazeera English, the Jerusalem Post, YNetNews.com, Arab News, Saudi Gazette, Newsday in New York, the Orlando Sentinel, the Houston Chronicle, The Daily Star, the News of the World, the Daily Yomimuri in Tokyo, Chicago Magazine, the Arlington Heights Daily Herald, and Aramco Magazine. His political columns are published in the Southwest News-Herald and Des Plaines Valley News, Regional News and Palos Reporter newspapers in Chicagoland. Hanania is the President/CEO of Urban Strategies Group media and public affairs consulting which has clients in Illinois, Florida, Michigan and Washington D.C.
Hanania is Palestinian Christian from prominent Bethlehem and Jerusalem families. His wife and son are Jewish and he performs standup comedy lampooning Arab-Jewish relations, advocating for peace based on non-violence, mutual recognition and Two-States.
His Facebook Page is Facebook.com/rghanania
Email him at: RGHanania@gmail.com
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