Many of us take for granted the right to defend ourselves against random acts of violence. Not all of us have that right. In the state of Maryland it is nearly impossible for a citizen to get a carry permit. In the neighboring Commonwealth of Virginia most malls have posted policies (in ¼” print) prohibiting firearms.
A few hours ago (Sat, 1/25/14) a gunman opened fire at the Columbia Mall in Maryland, killing at least 2, the police are still sorting thing out. The unimaginable terror, the impact on first responders, the lives lost and families who will never be the same. This isn’t the first, and I fear not the last, time this kind of tragedy will happen.
Disarming citizens is not the answer, but neither is allowing anyone to possess a firearm. Education, training, background checks, mental health care…there are many factors. Details will emerge, but a lawfully armed citizen could have made a difference…but they never had a chance.
There are no easy answers, but we must do better than the bans on guns.