By Ed Diokno
Excuse me for being so incoherent on this subject, but it’s hard to make sense of such a senseless act — the mass shooting in Orlando in the early morning of June 12. I just have to get this out, as if writing will cleanse my mind of this horror.
America is No. 1. Are we on the way to being “Great Again?” No! The No. 1 I’m referring to is the number of mass shootings we have. Depending on how you loosely you define “mass shooting,” we have suffered almost one mass shooting a day this year or six to date in 2016. One per day or six in six months, both numbers are way too many.
I thought when Sandy Hook happened and pictures of all those dead children were on the front pages of the world’s newspapers, America would come up with some sensible gun laws.
That was four years ago. Nothing has been done. NOTHING!
When I was in the Army, the weapon the infantry used was the M16. That was during the Vietnam era. The M16 and the assault-style rifle Sig Sauer MCX used by the killer was designed for one thing and one thing only – to kill people. They are called assault weapons for a reason.
You can get better rifles for target shooting and more appropriate weapons for hunting. There are better designed guns and rarer weapons, rifles that have a significant symbolism. Owning an assault weapon is a macho thing, an extension of a guy’s penis. Unless you really believe that there will be a zombie apocalypse, there is no reason to buy an assault gun except … I repeat … to kill other people, a lot of people.
The reason mass shooters prefer assault weapons is because you don’t have to be an expert marksman to shoot someone. At full-automatic, you’re bound to hit something … I mean, someone – another human being.
Now we have Orlando. I don’t care what religion or ethnicity the gunman was. Anybody who would do what he did had to be mentally ill and yet, he was able to buy his deadly weapon legally. No questions asked.
Forty-nine victims were killed (so far), 53 wounded, one dead shooter. That a record, of sorts: the most killed in a mass shooting in America’s history. Ugly numbers. Nothing to be proud of. I fear the numbers may inspire others to try and break that record.