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Thursday, March 1, 2018

Mental health and other gun rights false arguments

     Gun rights advocates have been searching for an argument that shifts the basis for gun massacres away from the reality that the availability of guns in our Country is why we have such a disproportionate amount of gun deaths.  If my Facebook friend posts are any indication such targets as violent online video games, taking God out of the classroom and mental health reforms are the only changes needed to reduce mass shootings.  If you just look at one other country you easily see the fallacy of any of these arguments.  Japan has more young people per capita playing violent video games than the US.  Japan has a serious national mental health problem with a high rate of depression and one of the World's highest rates of teenage suicide.  Japanese education is not centered on any specific religious teachings but teaches religion with  a global diverse perspective.  So how many gun deaths does Japan have given the realities just described?  Fewer than 10 for a population over 127 million.  The United States has more than that every 4 hours.  I realize that we may not share the same culture as Japan but ask the question of which culture is more sane?

     This is the Japanese gun requirements:

"Japan, which has strict laws for obtaining firearms, seldom has more than 10 shooting deaths a year in a population of 127 million people.  If Japanese people want to own a gun, they must attend an all-day class, pass a written test, and achieve at least 95% accuracy during a shooting-range test.  Then they have to pass a mental-health evaluation at a hospital, as well as a background check, in which the government digs into any criminal records or ties and interviews friends and family members.  Finally, they can buy only shotguns and air rifles — no handguns — and must retake the class and the initial exam every three years.  Unlike in the US, Japanese law has long outlawed guns. Still, the wisdom from Japan seems to be that tighter regulations keep guns confined only to those fit to use them."

    Now we know the "rest" of the story

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