After watching the news about the school shooting, and hearing all the blame games being played, I had to throw my two cents in to the discussion.
- “why didn’t someone act on the reports the shooter was dangerous?” was one of the most frequently stated questions. Lots of reasons..most of them being the laws already in place that prevents law enforcement from arresting someone who has not yet committed a crime.
- “He showed signs of mental illness. Why didn’t someone do something before he started killing kids?” There are so many problems associated with “reporting mental illnesses”. The HIPPA laws and CFR 42, section 2 of the federal confidentiality laws, make it extremely difficult to “take action”. It takes two doctors willing to breach confidentiality. That carries a mandatory imprisonment of five years and a 200 K dollar fine if convicted of breaching. They have to weigh that reality against just how “problematic’ a patient is or could be”. Then they have to find a lawyer willing to go before a judge to get a 36 hour hold for mental evaluation at a state facility. The states have closed down most of their state facilities for mental health treatment due to budget cuts put in place years ago. If there is no state facility, there can be no mental health hold. After doing all of that, a patient has the right to check themselves OUT of mandatory evaluation with a verbal statement. Hospitals HAVE to release within 12 hours once the patient says “I want to go”. So HOW exactly are we supposed to prevent a crime a person may be contemplating? They can not be arrested for a terroristic threat…it is a ticketing offence in every state. We can’t hold medically if the patient wants to go.
- “How could a kid buy that gun?” Easy, every single state allows “kids’ to buy a gun. The ages for most purchases is 21, but there are five or six states where an 18 year old can make the purchase and one where a 16 year old can purchase them. In Minnesota, a 14 year old may legally purchase a gun. Now, they CAN NOT purchase a handgun (except online or at a gun show)…JUST a long rifle, shotgun or semi-auto military style weapon such as the AK_47.
There are things we can do. Laws can be passed to regulate the sales of guns. We could ban military style long guns. We could ban bump stocks and high capacity magazines.
We could repeal HIPPA and the Feds could repeal the confidentiality regulations for the addicted and/or mentally ill.
We could allow the police, FBI, et al to arrest people simply on the word and worries of a person making a complaint…we’d have to change the Constitution for that one though.
We can arm every single person in the Untied States and say “protect yourself”.
We can arm every teacher, place metal detectors at each school exit and entrance.
We could buy full body armour for each child attending school.
All of these, with ONE glaring exception, remove protections that Americans believe to be their absolute rights, or are so cost prohibitive they will never occur…and that is banning specific guns and accessories that are NOT Constitutionally protected.
I get so frustrated with people stating no one “prevented the shootings”, especially since no one could have…UNLESS they removed the weapon being used.
I become angered when I hear the same old platitudes from our governing body. All their “prayers” do absolutely NOTHING to solve the problem, and further, their prayers all seem to imply that if the kids were praying themselves, they would have been spared. Even the President, showing zero compassion in either facial or body expression, said he sent his ‘prayers and condolences’ to the families of the dead, adding: ‘No child, teacher or anyone else should ever feel unsafe in an American school.’
In the words of a young woman who somehow, against all odds managed to survive the shooting:
“I don’t want your condolences you fucking price of shit, my friends and teachers were shot. Multiple of my fellow classmates are dead. Do something instead of sending prayers. Prayers won’t fix this. But Gun control will prevent it from happening again.” sarah (@chaddiedabaddie) February 14, 2018