By Jamal H. Khan
Every time there is a massacre with an automatic firearm, the same sequence of events is staged. After the initial shock and discussion of the prevalence of guns in our society and the ease with which they can be obtained, the outrage starts to fade and the gun lobby starts its defense of guns after lying low for a few days.
This gains strength with each passing day. It reaches a crescendo as the massacre fades to the inside pages of the newspaper. Various "experts" appear on the radio and TV proclaiming how gun control does not work. They cite all the other reasons in the world for the tragedy except easy availability of deadly arms.
As the victims' memory starts to fade the same old arguments about how "guns don't kill people" starts getting thrown in our faces. This time the NRA and their followers found another way to deflect the criticism.
Possibly a serious analyst happened to mention mental illness as another cause. This was enough for gun-worshippers to place the entire blame on poor handling of mental illness. Just lock all of them up and everything will be fine.
Such simplistic solutions are readily offered. No one asks how they propose to find and lock up all criminally insane people. Is there a barcode on their foreheads? Will all the families who happen to shelter one of these individuals be able to diagnose them and willingly turn them over to be locked up? And what of the deranged person who massacres a children's classroom as the first manifestation of his illness?
Another solution offered is strict adherence to gun safety. All firearms are to be in locked cabinets. Yes, in a perfect world it will be a given. How are we to enforce this rule? And who is going to supply reliable safety cabinets to all?