Nine people were killed last night when a young white man opened fire at a predominantly African-American church in Charleston, South Carolina. The 21-year-old domestic terrorist allegedly yelled "You rape our women, you have to go!" as he opened fire on the unsuspecting worshipers. The gunman, Dylan Storm Roof, was captured today more than 200 miles away in North Carolina.
The dead from the church shooting include the pastor, Reverend (and South Carolina State Senator) Clementa Pinckney, a religious leader who was a personal friend of President Obama. The President addressed the nation on the church murders this afternoon and noted in his remarks that he has had to talk about these types of killings way too many times during his years in the White House.
Our demand for easy and unlimited access to guns has made America one of the most violent and dangerous places on the planet. There are almost no guns in Great Britain or Japan, and the streets of those countries are infinitely safer than our own. We are no longer the shining example of a leader for the rest of the world, but a wounded ex-leader bound up in bloodied bandages and nonsense bumper stickers.
Our leaders need to stand up to the National Rifle Association and the other lobbyists for gun manufacturers and sellers. Not every moron with a pulse needs to be armed with automatic weapons - and tattooed goons don't need to be dragging their knuckles and weapons through our shopping centers, university halls, and school parking lots. There is no guarantee in the Constitution that anyone has a right to be armed - other than a "well regulated militia." Somehow, I don't believe that the lunatics who opened fire in Tucson, Aurora, Newtown, or Charleston were a part of any official group charged with protecting the country.
Guns are not the answer, they are the problem. The streets of America will never be safe until the guns are gone.