Friday 14 December 2012

"The streets of heaven...

...are crowded with too many angels tonight." from The West Wing

The news from Newtown, Connecticut today is not good.

A man walked into an Elementary School, for children aged 5-11 and opened fire. 18 young children died at the scene, 2 more died at the nearby hospital. Six adults were dead in the school teachers and/or administrators, there is also another adult dead in the town.

This is more school children killed, at a far younger age, than the Columbine shootings.

Already the two sides in America are taking sides on the issue of gun control and the right to bear arms. The actually second amendment read at the time it was suggested:
"A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."

Now the state funded militias are what has become the National Guard. So these are the regulated people that now for the security of a free state should have the right to bear Arms. The militia at the founding of the Union was any citizen that could fire a rifle but these days that has change, national service is not required and the threat of the occupying force coming back to claim its territory. 

No doubt the argument will rage again. But 20 children possible as young as six lost their lives today. They were no armed but a man in his twenties was, and came into their classroom and took their lives. How is the security of those children protected when everyone can get hold of a firearm. 

I'm not going to look solely at the raw figures of over 30,000 gun related homicides but look at it per capital.

In 2011 there was 9 gun related deaths per 100,000 of the USA's population. To be fair only 3.25 were from homicides or unintended reasons (the rest were suicides). 

Switzerland where ever man over 18 and under 60 has a fire arm as part of he nations defense force the figure was only 6.4 of which 0.73 were homicides or  unintended. In France the total was 3, 0.06 from homicide, UK 0.22 total 0.03 by homicide. German figures indicate 1.1 all of which are recorded as homicide.

But, I'll conclude as I began. The streets of heaven are crowded with too many angels tonight, so here is that clip.


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