Site Columns By Amy
March 7, 2001 - 7:18 PM

Hello World!

I donít often use this column to make political statements... I prefer to complain about innoxious things like the weather. Thereís not much point in latching onto something controversial because it tends to result in nasty emails flooding my mailbox pointing out the usual gaping flaws in my arguments. But then again, it's 3am and whatís the use of having this nice little site column where I can spout off about anything I do so please if I donít use it? So, today I will. And my topic? Gun control in the US of A.

I suppose gun control is always going to be one of those topics that will divide the US - though Iíve never really understood why this needs to be so. Itís written into the American constitution that all citizens have the right to bare arms. Well, fine. I donít dispute the fact that they have a place in US history and society, and I recognise the need for weapons for personal defence. What I *donít* get is the seeming complete and utter lack of anything approaching regulation. I mean, come on Ė you have to sit an exam and get a license to drive a car, which isnít even *designed* to be a lethal weapon. Quite frankly, my mind refuses to wrap itself around the concept of being able to buy a shotgun or a revolver in a Wal-Mart in some states.

Or, for that matter, I donít get the lack of a law requiring child-safety locks. Iíve yet to hear a good reason why someone would be willing to leave a fire-arm in reach of a child, let alone a *loaded* firearm, within the reach of junior, be it their own child, or the mere possibility of one wandering into reach. Locked gun-cabinets too could help in that matter as well. This is just simple accident prevention.

In Australia, as my rather sketchy grasp of the law informs me (if Iím wrong with any of the following, do correct me), it is illegal to carry a weapon in public and all automatic weapons, if not semi-automatics as well, were banned by law after Martin Bryant went on his rampage in Tasmania. You must also register your firearms and store them, when unused, in a secure, locked cabinet. Certainly, regulation will not and has not prevented guns from being sold on the black-market, but it has made it one hell of a lot harder for your teenage son or daughter to buy one, not to mention the local potential juvenile thug.

Iíve yet to actually here a good argument for gun-deregulation, let alone one for the absence of child-safety locks. A common slogan for pro-guns is ĎGuns donít kill people, people doí, but for Peteís sake, do you honestly have to make it easier for it to happen because of some seriously out-dated constitutional amendment dating back from the time when every gun was needed for the militia?

In other news, and something trivial, have you seen the ĎScooby Dooí cast shot? Thelma and Lousie or whatever their names are (ok, itís been years since I last watched that show) look ok, but the two guys? Ewww...

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