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The Time Is Now, America

Throughout history, there have been moments in time which have shaped a nation. Think JFK’s speech about sending a man to the moon or Dr King’s speech about race and equality and more recently think the terrorists attacks on September 11, 2001.

Well, now there is a time to make history in the United States and today, Friday, December 14, 2012, is that day.

Today, 26 innocent victims, 20 of which were children aged just 5 to 10 years of age, paid the ultimate price for that nations lack of gun control when a gunman, at a school in Newtown, Connecticut, opened fire and shot them.

I know that the US constitution, written over 200 years ago, allows the right to bear arms, but at what cost? How many more children must die due to a lack of gun control?  Die, due to a lack of empathy?  Die, due to a lack of action?

President Obama is about to commence his final term as US President.  Under American law, he cannot go for a third term anyway.  His presidency has been dogged by financial issues due to the ever worsening economy.  He needs to lead his country into a new era of gun control and this must be his legacy.  It won’t be a popular decision and he alone cannot make the law and amend the constitution.  That will be up to the lawmakers to do so but it must be lead by Obama himself.

It will be a hard sell.

Many of the pro guns crowd, led by the NRA, will argue that they have a right to protect themselves.  Well guess what?  It’s not working? It’s never worked.  It will never work.

I’ve never seen this headline:

 “Armed Citizen Saves The Day At Public School By Killing Heavily Armed Gunman”

or

“Hero Civilian With The Right To Bear Arms Kills Gunman At School Before He Tried to Kill Everyone”

The reason we don’t see these headlines is because it doesn’t happen. The headlines we do see are like these:

“Madman Kills 28 in School Rampage”

or

“Horrific”

or

“Another Mass Shooting”

And if the politicians can’t or won’t do it, then it is up to the people of the United States.  If you are a member of the NRA or are pro gun, show some true leadership and set an example that enough is enough and lay down your arms and encourage everyone to do so as well.  People power can be so powerful.

For those who say guns don’t kill people. People kill people. I agree, but why make it so easy to get access the guns?  Make it as hard as possible.

We did it in Australia.  After the Port Arthur Massacre of 1996, then Australian Prime Minister, John Howard changed our gun laws and it wasn’t an easy process.   There were a lot of people who didn’t want to give up their guns, mainly farmers and people from the bush.  But the law was changed and guess what?  Not one mass shooting since in almost 20 years.

This can be the future for the United States.  If enough people are finally outraged by today’s horrific events.

President Obama, it is time to make history.  This is the time when future generations will look back and see that someone was courageous enough to make a change.  That someone was influential enough to make a change.  That someone put their own self interests aside and just made that change.  This is your legacy.  It is your time to make a difference.

Some People Shouldn’t Breed

Last week I read a story about a mother in the United States, who along with her boyfriend and with both of them high on drugs, taped her 22 month old son to a wall for entertainment.  She took photos of the despicable act on her camera which showed the boy in distress and crying.

This photo of the boy, who cannot be identified, is shocking.

I was informed by a colleague today that a lady earlier this week had left her 4 year old daughter locked in the car in the above ground carpark, while she ducked into the supermarket.  The temperature that day was 26c/79f.  The child was seen trying to get out of the car but it was locked.  The windows were slightly open to let in some air and when asked by my colleague if she was ok, she politely nodded.  After a few more minutes the mother emerged from the supermarket with half a trolley full of groceries and when confronted by my colleague she laughed it off and said her daughter was fine. It only takes about 20 minutes for a car to really heat up and cause distress to the children in it. Half a trolley full of groceries leads me to think she was gone for some considerable time.

There have been similar stories of children being locked in cars while their parents go and gamble in casinos or simply forgot them as this example in Sydney shows.

In August this year, a 14 month old girl died after being locked in a car in the United States with the outside temperature reaching 37c/99f.  The terrible suffering this poor baby must have gone through would have frightening.

The West Gate Bridge as seen from the walkway ...

Image via Wikipedia

In January, 2009, little Darcey Freeman, a couple of days shy of her 5th birthday and on her way to school for the first time, was thrown from the top of the West Gate Bridge in Melbourne, allegedly by her father while her frightened brothers watched on in horror, for reasons not yet known.  She fell 58 metres to the water below and died a few hours later in hospital after suffering major internal injuries.

Darcey Freeman

What is wrong with these people?  I can accept that sometimes leaving a child locked in a car is an accident and not deliberately done, but how stupid could you be to forget your child was in the car?

What about the deliberate act of taping your child to a wall for your entertainment because you are high on drugs – which is a separate issue all together?

What would cause Darcey’s father to throw her over a bridge to certain death. Ok, she might have been whingeing or crying to whatever, but is that a reason to kill your own child?  No way.  Pull the car over and get out and take a breath if it is that bad.  Nothing your child does is worth killing them over.

Some people just shouldn’t breed and here is what I think the solution will be within the next 100 – 200 years.

Sterilisation.

I think the technology will exist in the next century or so to enable the earth’s water supply to be sterilised by our governments.  No one will be able to have children without a permit or a licence.  To apply for a permit or a licence you will need to sit an aptitude test, IQ test, pass a criminal background check, pass a credit assessment and prove that you are of sound mind.

Once you have passed all of the minimum criteria, you are given an antidote or a serum to counter effect the sterilisation and you can then get pregnant – hopefully the old fashioned way – and have a child. Once the child is born and if you want more kids you will need to demonstrate that you are a good parent by going through the application phase again.

The benefits here are numerous.  You breed out generational issues like poor work ethics, ineptitude and laziness.  People who are serial criminals won’t have kids who follow in their footsteps etc.  Ok, so crime won’t stop but I seriously think it would reduce.  You can also reduce the world’s population and therefore extend the life of the planet by not consuming the natural resources as quickly as it is being consumed now.

It’s not quite Hitler’s master race theory.  People of all different races and religions can continue to have children providing they pass the criteria.

It’s all about protecting the kids from abusive parents.  Parents who leave their kids locked in hot cars which kill dozens of kids every year around the world.  Parents who abuse their children either physically or just as badly, mentally.  Parents who just have kids so they get more government handouts through the pension.

When we have kids we have them knowing that we are there to protect them and prepare them for adulthood.  Children don’t ask to be born.  That’s not their choice.  It’s our choice to have kids, so it is up to us to love them and protect them and nurture them and teach them to be the best that they can be.  How can we expect them to become excellent parents themselves when they have deadbeat parents who treat them as so many kids in the world today get treated?  How can they become outstanding citizens when their parents in turn are not?

Ok so my sterilisation idea might be flawed but something has to be done.  The kids of the world need protecting and I don’t think it is up to the government to do so all of the time.  Keep an eye out for kids in your neighbourhood.  Is there any chance they are being abused or mistreated?  If you spot a kid locked in a hot car, smash that window or call the police or do both.  Stand up and be the voice for the kids who don’t have a voice of their own.

Who knows?  You might just save a life.