Wednesday, February 19, 2014


I never seek to be one of those bloggers who stirs up controversy and alienates a portion of his audience. But today I need to rant. I am not asking you to agree. But sometimes we all have to take a stand...

I don't know how many of you are old enough to really remember the Popeye cartoons, but in nearly every episode the hero would reach a point of no return, when the circumstances around him had become more than he could put up with any longer. At those moments his catchphrase was, "That's all I can stands and I can't stands no more!" He would then pop open a can of spinach and smash a few bad guys. I always loved those moments, because I think we all have points in our lives when we just have to say ENOUGH! And today, I am there.

Despite my long held stance as a pacifist (because I believe that is what Jesus asks of us) I have long steered clear of the national debate about guns. My silence has been for 2 primary reasons. I find that most discussions of the topic become political rather than moral, and I have no desire to have political discussions about much of anything. And I have also witnessed that such debate seems to never change anyone's opinion. It turns into yet another case of "I'm right...and you're stupid!" So I have remained quiet.

I live in Florida. Lately there have been three shootings here that have garnered national attention for a variety of reasons. A young man was shot because he was dressed suspiciously and was therefore seen as a threat by a man who should have just left him alone. Another was killed when a man wanted some music turned down in a van at a gas station, thought he might have seen a gun (he didn't) and fired 10 shots into the vehicle to "protect himself." And most recently, a man was shot in a movie theater after he was asked to quit texting during the previews and threw popcorn at the man who asked. The shooter was a retired police officer. I am not here today to discuss the outcomes of the legal maneuverings surrounding these shootings. I am not here to discuss the racism that may well have been involved in the first two. I am here- crying ENOUGH!- because in all three of these situations there was absolutely no reason it should be legal for the men who did the shooting to be carrying firearms. None.

I understand when people feel the need to protect themselves and their families by keeping weapons in their homes. I choose not to, because I would never want to use such a weapon. But that's just me. I understand that people enjoy hunting and have guns to use for sport. I have good friends who love going to shooting ranges and blasting away at targets. I am not suggesting that all guns are a problem. But I am saying there is no good that can come from non-professionals walking the streets, driving around or sitting in movie theaters with guns. Guns in such situations make people stupidly brave and stupidly bold. People who carry guns may not plan to use them, but more and more it seems like they are more than willing to do just that. In all of those situations, words might have been exchanged. Maybe even angry words. But take away the guns and no one would be dead. If "stand your ground" laws mean that you can antagonize a person, and then if they respond in a negative manner you have the right to shoot them, then we have returned to the days of the wild west. Frontier justice. And if you check with the families of the those three dead men, I think you will find that such a return is not as romantic as it may sound.

I have no idea how to get USAmericans to get serious about this issue when special interest groups won't even discuss banning assault rifles, which serve no purpose except for killing people. I just know that concealed weapons in public places in the hands of the average Joe are a really bad idea. I do not want people wandering around with guns any more than I want my neighbors to have nuclear warheads in the garage. I mention these 3 cases, but there are hundreds more. I know many of my closest friends disagree with me on the evils of concealed weapons, but to be honest, today I don't care. I have had all I can stands...and I can't stands no more. Stop the insanity. I don't hate the 2nd amendment. I hate reading nearly every day about a senseless shooting in which someone loses a brother, a daughter, a parent or a friend. I pray we find a way to get guns off the street, because more and more it seems the "legal" weapons are doing as much damage as the illegal ones. And I, for one, have simply had ENOUGH!

Because of Jesus,


  1. Anonymous2/19/2014

    What a load of crap. Guns are not the problem. Idiots like you are.

  2. And there you go- the reason why there is no rational debate or any progress on this national atrocity. And if you had read closely you would know I am not an idiot..I'm stupid!

  3. Susan Mc T2/19/2014

    A differing opinion from your own certainly doesn't make one an idiot. The characteristic I find closer to that would be a closed mind.

    I happen to know Carl and know him not to be an idiot - most of the time! :)

    1. Thanks Sus. Your support means a great deal to me. Most of the time! :)


  4. I'm not quite sure how to tackle this one because in England, we're not allowed to carry guns and I'm very happy about that. I have a concern with the police walking around with guns though, as I'm seeing it more and more and that's not a good sign.

    I understand the reasons why people say they want to carry a concealed weapon, but guns don't shoot by themselves so I'd say that maybe more needs to be done before a person is allowed to buy a gun. Maybe more health checks might stop certain people getting guns, harsher permits, maybe more criminal background checks. I don't know and it's pretty hard to come up with an answer.

    But at the end of the day, if someone looses their temper due to an incident, you'll still have the same outcome. You'd think an ex policeman would be able to deal with a situation just by talking.

    You're not stupid, you've just a man with an opinion and sometimes we all have to agree to disagree.

    1. Thanks for the insight from a country that does do gun control- and does it well. I appreciate your sharing!


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