The common ideological thread woven into the argument in favor of more gun control in light of the horrible incident in Aurora CO (or Tuscon AZ or on and on and on) and the argument in favor of “the death penalty” for Penn State is: Yes, good people who obey the law and follow the rules suffer consequences and “collateral damage” when bad people break the law. This is nature, is it not? We may pride ourselves on being a nation of fierce individualists, but we cannot deny that in nature there exists vast and delicately balanced ecosystems – yes, SHOCK!, “collectivism” – that when one portion is mallignent, the entire balance is affected and “good portions” suffer. Forgive the over-simplification here, but do we not come from nature? What does nature give two hoots about The United States? To what extent are we able to graft our fierce individualism onto it? I say all of this understanding that the time to debate gun control – or the excesses of college sports, or the efficiency of the TSA, etc. etc. – is not during a great shock to one of these systems, because emotions are high, judgement is clouded. But I’m Gen X, I grew up hearing that “society is becoming desensitized” to violence, an arguemnt I always viewed as coming from nattering nabobs who confoundingly and conveniently seemed to forget that … ahem… nature is violent. But I do fear that these kind of events are becoming more … commonplace? Is that not a reason to worry? If it is, is it not worth at least a conversation about tighter controls on weapons that only get more lethal, more efficient, smaller, easier to conceal, etc.? If it is, is it concievable that such controls can peacably coexist with the second ammendment? At the very least, can they not be automatically framed as second amendment infringements? To how many more of these events must we be subjected? Maybe it’s just our nature.

Meanwhile, in Syria…