America’s gun violence: for the victims

Of the children killed by guns in the industrialized world, 87% are killed in the United States of America. – The Children’s Defense Fund

News bulletin, December 15, 2012

A man-eating tiger rampaged through a junior high school in Burkhart, California, today, killing 13 children, a cafeteria worker, and a man who was delivering an anchovy pizza to the principal. After consuming the pizza, the tiger devoured its owner, Mort Wheeple, before escaping into the countryside.

“Four Victims of Cheap Patriotism”
“Now is not the time to talk about man-eating tiger control,” said a government spokesman. “We need to offer support to the families of the victims, at least until it’s time to switch our support to the families of the next victims.”

Asked when it will be time to talk about man-eating tiger control, he said, “Go away now. I’m praying for the victims.”

Speaking from the afterworld, a spokeschild for the victims said that prayers were “nice, but kind of pointless, because we’re, like, already in Heaven. You should pray for yourselves,” added Mackenzie “Mint” Julep, aged 12. “You’re the ones who are still down there with all the guns and man-eating tigers.”

Interpretation is key.

The Burkhart tragedy has once again called into question that part of the 2nd Amendment which states: “The company of animals being conducive to the well-being of humanity, the right of the people to keep and travel with pets shall not be infringed.”

A spokeswoman for NARCOPEP – the National Association for Regulation and Control of People-Eating Pets – had this to say about the 2nd Amendment: “What our Founding Fathers had in mind was cats, dogs, and goldfish. They weren’t envisioning a day when half the country would be walking around with man-eating tigers.”

Nonsense, responded Butch “Cassidy” Dragoon, chairman of Man-Eating Tigers and Firearms Ongoing Rights. “What America needs is more man-eating tigers. If every teacher in that school had had a man-eating tiger … well, everyone would have been eaten, but that doesn’t alter our 2nd Amendment rights.

More guns, more tigers. Then we’ll be safe.
“As we say at METAFOR,” Mr. Dragoon continued, “man-eating tigers don’t kill people. People who own man-eating tigers kill people. Clearly, this Mort Wheeple was unbalanced. If he hadn’t had a tiger, he’d have used a gun.”

When it was pointed out to him that although every country has unbalanced people, children aged 5 to 14 in America are 13 times more likely to be murdered with guns than children in other industrialized countries, Mr. Dragoon said, “That’s because we don’t have enough guns and man-eating tigers.”

Asked if the American people shouldn’t have the right not to be killed by guns or man-eating tigers, Mr. Dragoon said, “Go away now. I’m praying for the victims.”

As has happened after every such tragedy, sales of man-eating tigers soared. “I dunno,” said Sukie Pinwhistle, 32, as she waited in line outside Ravenous Beasts “R” Us. “After my boyfriend and my quilting teacher got killed by tigers, I figured I need a tiger for protection.”

Having reached the end of my patience, I informed Ms. Pinwhistle that her reasoning was specious. She told me to go away. “I’m praying for the victims,” she said. “And I’m about to reach the door.”

Before finishing this article, I made a last phone call to the afterworld. What, I asked, would the schoolchildren want for Christmas if they were still alive?

“Tell American grownups,” said Mackenzie Julep, “that we want serious control of guns and man-eating tigers, so other kids won’t die crying and begging for our lives the way we did.

“Also, please tell our families, we really miss them.”

Please consider a donation to The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence and/or Demand a Plan.

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6 thoughts on “America’s gun violence: for the victims

  1. Good job and right on point, Rhiannon.

    I’ve found the bigger a man-eating tiger I carry around, the more women are impressed. If only I could get me a sabre-toothed tiger!

    Nothing will happen in the U.S. The NRA is just that strong.

  2. Perry and Margot, thank you for your comments. Perry, you’re right that the NRA is powerful, and I know that our current trend is for less restriction on firearms, but I hope this tragedy will start to change things so that the women and children at Sandy Hook will not have died in vain.

  3. Hi Rhiannon, I wonder if you could clear up a question I have about the US constitution. Was the 2nd amendment intended to arm citizens against a potential tyrannical government, or just arm them in general for whatever purpose they see fit? I have always assumed the former, but that doesn’t seem to be the case these days.

  4. Robert, the 2nd Amendment reads as follows: “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.” So the intent isn’t clear. Did the Founders envision this militia fighting against foreign powers, or against the U.S. government if, as you say, it turned tyrannical? (Which some Americans think it already has, with taxation, the election of a black president, etc.) It IS clear that they didn’t envision automatic weapons, political assassinations, or guns being used on children. They seem to have had a rather exalted view of their fellow (male) citizens, believing that they would only “bear arms” (muskets) in a good cause. I can’t help but wish that they had left this amendment out.

  5. Thanks for clearing that up Rhiannon (and thanks for mailing too!). It does sound like the reasoning behind the right to bear arms is for military purposes, not personal use.

    Here in Britain, someone went rampant with a semi automatic rifle in Hungerford, and they were banned. Then a terrible school shooting in Dunblane, and handguns were banned. I know it is a different culture but I can’t think of anyone who misses these weapons.

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