Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Should we sacrifice children for the sake of guns?

Rex Berry: What is our priority, our children or the absolutist's abstract (and profitable) view of the Second Amendment?

Published: 3/7/2013 1:51 AM 
Last Modified: 3/7/2013 3:49 AM

I am a retired 26-year veteran of the Tulsa Police Department. I own guns. In 2002 I began working overseas in numerous conflict zones. I specialized in training and monitoring police and security forces. I offer the following questions and information for your consideration.
The critical decision. 

What is our priority, our children or the absolutist's abstract (and profitable) view of the Second Amendment?
The Second Amendment says, "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."
Thomas Jefferson and Gouverneur Morris understood sentence structure. Commas mean the citizen is to be part of a regulated state militia. We had a wild frontier and firearms were single-shot muzzle loaders. Standardized locks (firing mechanisms) were just being developed in France.

Truth: This legislation has nothing to do with hunting or self defense. The sheer number of guns in America makes confiscation of civilian weapons impossible. 
Truth: This is about military battle weapons. Gen. Stanley McChrystal said on Fox News that these weapons do not belong in civilian hands. The M16, M4, AR15 and AK47 can chew through a cinder block wall within a relatively few shots. The Barrett .50 caliber is lethal to several miles. It can punch through a concrete wall and destroy a person over a mile away. 
The National Firearms Act of 1934 did not disarm us. It limited gangster access to sub-machine guns, hand grenades and a few other deadly instruments. 

I attended school in Claremore during the 1950s and 1960s. Children were not subjected to metal detectors and panic drills in preparation for lunatics with guns.
According to the Congressional Research Service, 
  • between 1982 and 1994 the number of people killed in mass shootings averaged 25.5 a year
  • From 1995 to 2004 - during the assault weapons ban - the average was 20.9 a year
  • From 2005 until now, the average has been 54.8 killed

How did God get conflated with guns? 

On Dec. 14 the Rev. Bryan Fischer, director of the American Family Association, stated that God did not intervene at Sandy Hook because prayer was no longer in school and God does not go where he is not wanted.
Where have reason and logic gone? 

Prior to my retirement, I coordinated our monthly COPS meetings. We worked to keep guns out of schools. 

Now our legislators sponsor bills to bring guns into schools and make criminals out of Oklahomans who try to enforce federal weapons limitation. Oklahoma passed a law (since overturned as a violation of the First Amendment) outlawing Shariah law, something that never was nor ever will be a threat. 

When officers carry 100-round weapons to defend against similarly armed bad guys, then three officers engaging one bad guy can result in a "death blossom." 

Four people firing from different positions - 100 rounds per person, each round with about a half-mile kill range - means a circular lethal zone about one mile in diameter. Isn't that a bad thing? 

Council on Law Enforcement Education and Training (CLEET) basic firearms training does not prepare anyone to contain this threat. Officers have suffered heavily facing these weapons. 

Examples include the North Hollywood shooting on Feb. 28, 1997, and the April 17, 2004, Kosovo ambush of 13 officers by one assailant with an AK47. YouTube videos of these incidents are available, as are videos of M4/M16 weapons against concrete and other targets. 

Original Print Headline: Should we sacrifice children for sake of guns?
Rex Berry is a retired Tulsa Police Department officer.


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