Ex-Police Officer for Gun Control

OPINION

By Gregory Taylor For the life of me, I just don’t understand the gun craze in America. There is a national psychosis when it comes to gun ownership. As an ex-police officer in a city where gratuitous murders have become unspectacular, I lament the fascination with a weapon whose invention and design is for one purpose: to kill and maim. Had I the power of a King during my tenure, I would have disarmed the entire city in order to make my job that much safer. I am painfully aware, ad nauseam, of the 2nd Amendment arguments for one’s right to bear arms. I, however, personally make a distinction between a private citizen and a state militia, notwithstanding, the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to the contrary; but I also recognize until the U.S. Congress amends the Constitution we all have to, and do, live with the consequences of this national pandemic. There really is an unhealthy obsession with this lethal instrument, and it borders, on mental illness. I can only surmise, for a great many Americans, the pleasure derived from gun ownership and its related usage stimulates a primal area of the brain that can’t be satiated by more innocuous stimuli. This elemental state is too compelling and too gratifying to overcome, in all likelihood, due the immediate and permanent effects when the gun is used as designed. I don’t even understand the hunting of animals. I am at a loss to see the sportsmanship in stalking and killing a prey that is simply pursuing its life as nature intended. As a military reserve officer during the Vietnam era, I’ve trained and familiarized myself with weapons, such as the .50 Caliber and M60 machine guns, M79 and M203 grenade launchers, M61 hand grenade, M-16 and M-14 rifles on which I qualified as an “Expert.” I’ve handled C-4 plastic explosives, Bangalore torpedoes, and Claymore mines to name a few. As a police officer, my two main tools were the Colt Python .357 magnum and my 12-gauge shotgun – but my best weapon was my radio. When America has another disgusting episode of mass shootings, this time of her babies, this ex-police officer, who would not have hesitated to defend those babies by putting a bullet in the head of the shooter, not only laments the tragedy of those murders, but the tragedy of America’s inability to come to terms with its illness. Too many, shall we say, undeserving people have access to a firearm. There are too many loopholes that enable people to purchase firearms legally at gun shows. Just too many guns are floating around in this country. For those of you who target and skeet shoot (which I have done plenty of in the past), I am not advocating the controlling of guns for that purpose. But, I will conclude by saying, paradoxically, when I was a police officer I not only carried a gun on-duty, but off-duty as well. Virtually, 24 hours a day I was armed to the teeth. When I left the police department one of the earliest things I did was to sell all my guns. I have no firearms. What I had that most of the gun-lovers will never have is the temperament and training to use those firearms.
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