Dec 17, 2012


It's always hard to write about a tragedy. It's easier to keep quiet and not step on anyone's emotional toes. When last Friday hit the news, I was in shock like everyone else. I reached out to my siblings and their children, who felt hurt and confused and scared. I imagined my niece and nephew who only live a few hours away from there, in kindergarten and pre-k, so little, so funny, so ultimately helpless against violence of that force.

But my niece and nephew back east are no strangers to guns. In fact, their father collects guns and is an avid hunter. They never go grocery shopping for meat, and the littlest knows moose meat is her favorite. My whole family are no strangers to guns. We are police officers, sheriffs, military members, war vets. We know the power of a gun and the safety rules of owning one. We know that there are two safes, one for the guns and one for the clips, and the keys aren't kept together.

What we don't own are semi-automatics. What we don't need are guns that belong in war and action movies. No one needs to be able to shoot off thirty rounds at at time. These are people guns. These are massacre guns. GB has rules about what kinds of guns civilians can own. Hunting rifles are fine, but any pistol/handgun is prohibited. Anything that can shoot six bullets without reloading is prohibited. Can I stress that more? SIX bullets.

Wake up, America. We're not waiting on a zombie apocalypse. We don't need guns based off AK-47s in the hands of citizens. We don't need to buy bulk ammo at the nearest supercenter. Why can I only buy two boxes of cold medicine but can buy 400 rounds at a time? What on earth are we doing?

My mom brought up a sad point. Those parents probably already bought Christmas presents for their children. Maybe people will think me callous, but I hope those toys are donated to Toys for Tots or another organization. Those kids aren't coming home to open them, and they were never really "their toys" in the first place. I'm sure all their favorites and most played with will hold a special place, but for these unopened presents it will just be a haunting reminder. Something decent/noble can bud from this tragedy. I hope it will.


  1. "Why can I only buy two boxes of cold medicine but can buy 400 rounds at a time? What on earth are we doing?"

    Well said. A very powerful compilation of thoughts on such a tragic issue. I have absolutely no experience with guns, though many of my family members also served, whether in the military or police force, so I'm glad that someone with experience and knowledge has voiced this point so eloquently. It is just too easy to get access to these kinds of weapons that can do so much damage so easily. We have more restrictions on getting access to violent video games than actual weapons. Sad. Very sad.

    One of my first thoughts after the news broke was about Christmas, too. I can only imagine how this is going to affect not only this Christmas but every other for these children's families. So heartbreaking. I think it would be wonderful for those presents to be donated, or even to have a toy drive in general, so that something positive can be done to commemorate the lives of these children as opposed to the usual pattern we see in the media, of tacitly glorifying the perpetrator.

    1. Thank you, Lana. It took a long time to work up the courage to post anything because I don't want to cause offense. I'm not personally a gun-toter but have been exposed to them my whole life. I learned to shoot at a fairly young age, though I might not be any good now.

      I think a toy drive is a wonderful idea! I'd love to see something beautiful stem from all this grief.

  2. You did good, I'd comment more but it would take me forever once I got started. But really all I want to see is something ugly, a long ugly debate on guns in this country. That would be the best thing to come out of it ....

    It's a shame 20 kids had to die to make it happen tho.