March: Guns, goons and gibberish!

Sunday Akin Olukoju

Although a gun is defined as “a weapon incorporating a metal tube from which bullets, shells, or other missiles are propelled by explosive force, typically making a characteristic loud, sharp noise”; and while it is also appropriately explained as synonymous with “firearm, pistol, revolver, rifle, shotgun, carbine, automatic, handgun, semiautomatic, machine gun, Uzi; [and] weapon”, the one clear omission is that it is definitely a weapon of annihilation, a tool of destruction, and a toy for murder.

It is a very deadly inanimate object in the hands of goons. So who is a goon?

A goon is believed to be “a silly, foolish, or eccentric person”; “a stupid or awkward person”; “a hired hoodlum”, “a roughneck”, or in the typical North American definition, “a bully or thug, especially one hired to terrorize or do away with opposition”.

A goon could hire himself or herself to carry out a crazy idea formed in his or her own head. A goon can concoct and execute a deadly project as a result of a deranged or manipulated mind.

Goons may be limited in their schemes and plots as long as guns are not in the picture. But when guns get into the hands of goons, their deranged minds will race at neck-breaking speed to execute maximum damage. And when a maximum carnage has been executed with plenty human casualty, we the onlookers will begin to hear entertaining gibberish!

So, what is gibberish? This term is described as “unintelligible or meaningless speech or writing”; especially when someone “talks gibberish”, and this is believed to be synonymous with “nonsense, garbage, balderdash, blather, rubbish; gobbledygook, mumbo jumbo, tripe, hogwash, baloney, bilge, bull, bunk, guff, eyewash, piffle, twaddle, poppycock; [and] verbal diarrhea”.

The discussion about the pros and cons of easy access to guns in the US has been long and winding. It is proper to stand up for gun manufacturers in a free-market economy where citizens have equal stake in the protection of lives and properties. It is appropriate to have the freedom to own properties, guns included.

It is normal in a free world to bear arms – except if it is made clear that it should not be turned into weapons of mass destruction!

Think about it for a second – why are we making and distributing guns if we are so sure that there will be no need for their use.

No, the system is set up to create winners and losers, mainstream and marginalized, rich and poor, upper class and lower class, insiders and outsiders, the privileged and the underprivileged, the protected and the unprotected – so, those in the first group are constantly living in fear, and must bear arms to protect themselves from those in the deprived group.

The US in particular is a country of highly brilliant and brave people doing many stupid things.

First, they are running a very expensive democratic system where corporations and multi-billionaires bankroll the highly expensive electoral system, and subsequently living out the axiom that he who pays the piper dictates the tune.

Second, the system creates few super rich and a huge population of struggling lower class with the illusion of having the potential to be rich one day.

Third, the people are so smart to believe that carrying guns is better than taking care of the reason to carry guns in the first place. Fourth, no one ever thought of changing the bullets that kill to bullets that can put someone to sleep for a short while.

Decision-makers appear to be powerless in a country where the power of democracy has been overblown and over-rated. The masses are marching, but the few power-brokers are playing chess-game with human lives within the corridors of power.

No one cares so much about the goons roaming free as long as their nefarious activities are limited to the areas inhabited by the underprivileged. Guns have become hotter products than food in a country where some still go to bed hungry. Sadly, many countries around the globe will like to be like America!

It is interesting to listen to what some people say each time some goons turned the guns on innocent people. They simply talk gibberish – displaying sickening and stupid “verbal diarrhea”.

Instead of making sure that guns are not easily accessible, they loudly talk about good guys with guns taking out the bad guys with guns. None of them is talking about who opens fire first, and whether a good guy could be outnumbered by the bad guys.

No one cares about how goons could turn guns on innocent people in a culture where everyone is presumed innocent until proved to have committed an offence.

No one cares about swift identification and removal of goons from the public space in order to make the space safe for all stakeholders.

Unfortunately, many of these goons love the notoriety of publicity they will garner from mainstream media despite their pre-planned decisions to go down with the people they mowed down.

And gibberish will continue to fly and flow as long as some people see the issue from the point of view of class right or status symbol.

Many will see their protection only in their ability to bear arms, even when they realize that another guy with the same type of gun could sight them first, and then shoot them from behind.  But wait a second. Why do some believe that more guns will mean better safety?

Shouldn’t common sense dictate that more guns could mean more flying bullets? If more deadly bullets are flying in neighborhoods and open streets, wouldn’t that lead to more casualties?

This may explain why Canada decides to do the brighter thing – restrict guns and reduce the probability of goons laying their hands on guns! The idea that all should have access to guns also supports the false belief that good guys will identify bad guys first, and that good guys are sharper shooters than bad guys.

Thank God for Canada – a country where bravery is matched with equal dose of wisdom, a country where the system bridged the gap between the rich and the poor, a country where goons are quickly identified, removed and reformed rather than abandoned and criminalized, a country where people are raised and supported to be peace-loving instead of arming people to look out for bad guys – because at the end of the day, guns will only be necessary where goons are reproduced, and where the system promotes the idea of dogs eating dogs.

Sadly, some grew up with the macho-mentality to be fully armed to the teeth even when this is unnecessary. No one can run from, spun or shun a goon with a gun from spoiling the fun in the sun. But we can certainly rework any system to make the reasons for bearing arms unnecessary.

We can keep citizens and our law enforcement officers safer when we limit access to weapons of mass destruction!

(❚ Dr. Sunday Akin Olukoju is a university tutor, a college advisor, a community newspaper correspondent, and the president of a community organization)

February: What is So Social about Social Media?