As you all know, I live in Las Vegas. I was awakened by a text from my sister at about 3 in the morning (she lives in New Jersey) asking if I was okay. I was wondering why the concern when she told me about the shooting. I went back to sleep but got more texts, so when I woke up at 6 for work I put one of those damn “I’m okay” things on Facebook.
I hardly ever go to the Strip and certainly not for a country music festival, but I’m only about ten miles from where it happened. No one is safe, as long as these kinds of weapons are legal. And no “good guy with a gun” could have taken out a target on the 32nd floor from the ground. What I fear is happening is that we are becoming numb to these attacks. In 1966, Charles Whitman, the sniper at the University of Texas tower, killed 17. It was world-wide news. Today it’s small potatoes, because he was using single-action rifles, and his shooting spree lasted over 90 minutes. You can kill 17 in less than 17 seconds now.
The American fetish with guns is so strange and so deadly. We’ve got to get over it. If you’re keeping guns because you’re afraid of the government, well, you and your AR15 would be vaporized by an Apache helicopter. Guns in the home are statistically more likely to be used on family members than against intruders. “Responsible gun owners” are constantly being shot by their toddlers. It’s enough.