Sunday, April 29, 2007

America’s tragedy

America’s tragedy is the vague (or no) gun policy.. Well, America does have a policy and that is to have no gun control.

Hilton - Flags flying @ half mast Mourning the Virginia Tech Tragedy
Flags were flying at half mast in Anaheim, CA after the Virginia Tech tragedy. I took this picture near the convention center (last week) where I was attending a conference. As to be expected there is lot debate about thetragedy and even President Bush visited the campus and spoke eloquently about his shock and sadness. Yet, he shied away from talking about guns and gun control.

By some accounts, there are more guns stores than Gas (petrol) stations in America providing easy access to terrible destructive power. No doubt, Cho Seung-hui was mentally disturbed and such people exist in every society. But what made the difference was the ease with which he was able to acquire the guns. Had he not been able to acquire the guns so easily, he might have killed fewer people or perhaps none at all.

In US, Guns are routinely used in killings / suicides and involved in fatal accidents. Yet, politicians on either end of the spectrum shy away from effective debate on gun control. Even after the largest peacetime massacre at Virginia Tech, there were more discussions about campus security than about guns itself.

I for one like many immigrants have never understood why politicians consider guns as holy cow and don’t talk about it. This more so because, I admire the ability of the American society introspect several sensitive issues and discuss them threadbare. From abortion to race relations to Iraq war there seem to be no holy cows expect of course guns.

I believe it is high time America introspected on this as well and did something about it.