Time for a Swiss point of view maybe?
The reasons for this tragedy are several. For one, the shooter had mental health issues as well as drug and alcohol problems. Second, he probably did
not legally obtain these weapons and in 2005 the police took weapons away he previously had owned because he was committed to a mental hospital.
Third, the shooting may have happened because of some sort of fight between him and another man, probably his uncle.
Also, this news story (German, sorry)
says that the
people in the village had known the shooter to having had mental health issues and also that he owned guns. So what about the responsibility of the
community? Are we all just looking away?
One of the guns he used was an old army rifle of the style which probably my grandfather used to train with. Not some fancy fully automatic assault
rifle used in modern combat but bolt action or at most semi-automatic. You get the same firepower when buying a hunting rifle.
Some of you have argued that this is not a massive shooting?! Well, it is! Three people are dead and two wounded. That are five victims to many. Also,
Switzerland is a wee bit smaller than the United States. I can travel across the whole country, go sightseeing and get back home on the same day. This
makes this tragedy appear to be closer to everybody here.
What about gun control? What is wrong with that? I depend on every other person on the road to behave responsibly with their car or truck for which
they had to obtain a license to drive it. Why give guns just to everybody? When I was regularly discharged from the army last year, I had the
opportunity to keep my assault rifle (wiki link
). To do that, I first had to obtain proof that I had
committed no crimes by getting a current version of my criminal record (empty, if you need to know
) and then get a weapon buying permit. The
permit was valid for this weapon only! Any other weapon I might want to buy in the future, I will have to go through the same process again. I
actually considered buying a 9mm handgun later this year using the same permit (you can enter a number of guns you want to buy) and the guy from the
police actually called me and said that first time buyers are restricted to one gun only and that I had to choose. So I am now, with gun control laws
at work, in possession of a semi-automatic (mandatory conversion) assault rifle.
I am not talking about taking guns away or just selling small caliber weapons to the public but don't you guys want to be a bit safer by knowing that
at least some guys are checked before buying guns? I am not talking about criminals here. They will have guns no matter what restrictions the laws
Believe it or not, this topic also has something to do with health insurance. When I suffered from depression last year, I did not have to think about
how to pay the doctor or the medication so going to the doctor to get help was a very small step (well, financially speaking...). Same for other
mental health issues that other people might suffer from. So, mandatory health insurance for you Americans might actually help prevent some further
massacres by removing obstacles for people in need of psychiatric treatment. Think about it! (Please!)
What about the second amendment? The militia mentioned therein? Why not change your army to a militia army and have the arms at home? Works for my
country... Also, maybe your government just might think twice before sending troops to fight a war? (Just maybe...)
(One free teddy hug for reading the whole post)