In Florida it's standing room only at gun shows

It’s only a few weeks past the Sandy Hook school massacre in Connecticut, but down here in Florida it’s standing room only for admittance to local gun shows. While the federal government tries to find some type of gun legislation that will please everyone -- let alone be able to pass -- nothing gets done. I’ve watched the debate pro and con on television. I’ve seen intelligent arguments on both sides of the issue, but also the gun nut morons. Those are the ones that feel that it is necessary to hunt squirrels with a 50 caliber automatic machine gun with a 1000 ammo clip.

As I have said before, “Hostess brands will have Twinkees back on the shelves before any meaningful anti gun legislation is past.” The politicians are caught in the proverbial bind. That is to do the right thing and still get reelected. There is no easy solution to this situation and possibly no perfect one.

When I left Illinois for southern Florida, Chicago was averaging one gun killing per day as 2012 ended and 2013 began. I soon found that down here things seemed to be no different. We are not going to arm the teachers. In our years of association with fellow educators I know many that I would not give a weapon to. I would not want to see a classroom turned into the Okay Coral or a union meeting with armed educators.

We will not issue gun permits to those with mental problems -- whatever that is. Having had worked at the Fort Carson Mental Hygiene Clinic as a young Medical Service Corp Captain in the U.S. Army more than a half century ago, I ask, “ Who will diagnose those fit to carry and who will not be fit to carry?”

I am more concerned with the so-called “normal” that is beset with personal, financial, family and other problems.

My own personal opinion is that no meaningful gun legislation will pass and the situation will be allowed to pass into history. The gun situation is cultural and it may take a decade to try and change our thinking. I feel that it is time to try and make these changes.

After World War II, as I can remember, there was talk of us not becoming the policemen of the world. We got into Korea, Viet Nam, and Granada.

We are stuck in Afghanistan, Iraq and the Middle East. We have thousands of troops stationed all over the world while our financial blood is sent to China. Our cities, public transportation, bridges and inner structures are in decay. Rather than send troops and money overseas we need something like the old CCC to put people to work here. We seem to have capitalism for the poor and welfare for the banks. We have not learned that we cannot buy friends.

I offer no perfect solutions but as an 83-year-old teacher retiree and military veteran, I see what is happening. When I go to a large department store and I can’t find underwear made in this country, I know we are in trouble. I still have faith in this country and hope to still be around to see us climb out of this mess. God bless this country.


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