Lady Liberty’s Tears
By PJ LaRue
Copyright October 22, 2017
My soldiers fought for the flag lovingly called Old Glory.
But my people, it seems, do not recall the whole story.
A regulated militia bearing arms under Amendment Two,
Should give Amendment One’s peaceful protest its rightful due.
If the government denies either right, freedom is lost.
None of us want to pay the horrific price that will cost.
Lady Liberty’s tears slide down her symbolic face.
She cries, as we’ve forgotten basic courtesy’s place.
For these difficult issues we must reach an accord,
Ere Old Glory is soiled by the hatred we have poured.
As Lincoln said, “A house divided cannot stand.”
Let us listen to each other and heal our land.
First, let me say that I do not profess to know the answers. I do not believe my thoughts should overwhelm another person’s thoughts. I do believe that we, as a Nation, need to rediscover the art of LISTENING to both sides of an issue, deciding what we believe and then communicating with our Congressional representatives. Arguing with each other online or through any other medium is not solving our problems. We are tearing each other apart and causing more damage to our Nation than any terrorist could hope to cause. I hope this post motivates the silent majority of people to contact their Congressional Representatives. It is not my intention to provoke people into arguing with each other, but to encourage thoughtful listening and reasonable conversation.
Amendment One of the Constitution states, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.”
When applying this to current events, I do not believe that any politician should try to force the NFL players to stand during the National Anthem. To do so, is a violation of Amendment One, which our soldiers fought and died to defend. Preventing peaceful protest is disrespectful to everything they and their families sacrificed.
However, Amendment One does not prevent the NFL from instructing the players to protest on their own time and in street clothes rather than their uniforms. How the NFL chooses to respond is up to them. Then we have a right to choose whether to watch NFL games or not. We as citizens should also not remove another’s right to peacefully protest. End of story. Stop letting the media manipulate you.
Amendment Two of the Constitution states, “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.”
The Declaration of Independence
The Declaration of Independence includes, “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”
I believe that individuals do not need military style weapons such as AK-47s or AR-15s because the innocent people who end up being targets of terrorists and crazies do not have a chance to defend themselves. I do understand some of the reasons gun rights activists are concerned, and I believe we will not reach a compromise without a change in behavior by both the proponents and opponents of gun control laws.
Criminals Won’t Comply
The first reason often provided is that if the law abiding citizens were to give up their AK-47s and AR-15s, the criminals will not. I agree with that. However, to look at the opposing thought process, how many gangs and/or criminals are using these weapons in mass shootings, which are defined as four or more people? Well, it may be quite a few, because the definition of mass shootings varies between at least four people injured to at least four people killed according to politifact.com.
There are nearly 34,000 gun deaths in the United States each year lending credence to both sides of the issue. Some people want their weapons for self defense. Others believe that if fewer weapons were available, fewer deaths would occur. According to the BradyCampaign.org website, 11,564 of these deaths are murders and 21,037 are suicides. What we do not know is how many of these deaths would not have occurred anyway if guns weren’t available.
That leads to the second reason gun owners often state. People will find a way to kill others. Unfortunately, they are right, perhaps not as many, but some will still be murdered. One horrifying example occurred the same week as the Las Vegas massacre. Six toddlers and a teacher were murdered at a childcare center in Brazil by a security guard who had been fired.
Finally, this gruesome murder did not receive the same media attention that mass shootings do. Because it didn’t occur in the United States? Was it because it supports gun owners’ statements? Perhaps it was because the media didn’t benefit by airing it. Why? I don’t know.
In closing, my “side” is my opinion. However, if I check news sources reports from both sides of the issues, perhaps I will learn more. The media has a vested interest in keeping us divided. It’s all about the ratings.
I hope this post makes people think. There is a lot of anger expressed by both sides of the issues. However, there are a lot of people not saying anything because they don’t want to argue with others. I get it. You don’t have to argue with others. Go straight to your Congressional Representatives and express your thoughts. Here are the links:
Comment if you like, but please, no name calling or fighting with each other. Comments will be screened, and I reserve the right to not post any that call names, insult others or generally spread ill will. I hope this post helps us learn to communicate and to cut through the barriers that are preventing solutions.