Where trouble lives, opportunities limited

I don’t like guns. I was born and raised in the city, and only gangsters and thugs possessed them.

I understand hunting and find no fault with hunting if you eat what you shoot. But I do have problems with killing animals for sport (e.g., coyotes). There’s no sense to it.

And there are no legitimate arguments for killing for pleasure or trophy.

I favor banning assault weapons and limiting how many weapons someone can own. But I have no idea what that limit is. I do understand that people using guns kill people for many reasons.

Even if we do not consider the Parkland, Fla., Las Vegas and Sandy Hook incidents, people kill each other with regularity by using guns.

I do not know the statistics, but they are certainly there for anyone who wants to find them.

When I think of how many women have been murdered with guns by estranged husbands or boyfriends, I wonder, would they have done this without a gun? When I think of the gang violence in Chicago, Baltimore, Philadelphia or Johnstown, I wonder, would it be as serious without guns?

We can argue it is really a war about drugs, turf, etc., and that the individuals who do these crimes are animals, but would they be without a gun?

Would an insecure teenager, trying to make a name, trying to intimidate, trying to make their way in a world that offers little hope of a future, join a gang, pick up a gun and shoot his rivals to demonstrate his stature?

When school funding is cut, schools fall in to disrepair and look like houses of failure. How can you inspire a troubled individual who is looking for hope? Schools should not just be places of safety, but places for the development and fostering of dreams of opportunity and possibilities.

A culture which continually cuts funding for opportunity and dreams, blames overpaid teachers and blames families, should look itself in the mirror and ask what role they play in this loss of hope?

The fallacy of thinking that everyone has equal opportunity does not live where trouble lives. That world is a very small world. Those who live in that world often cannot see there is a future elsewhere.

I know many do not believe that. Many believe that you need to strap up your boots and go. But they do not live where trouble lives. Trouble is not just physical, it is not just family, it is all encompassing.

There is hope. There is always hope. Let’s start really thinking beyond the surface and what is possible.

I expect some response to this, but mainly from those who cannot recognize trouble when they see it. Like climate deniers, there are trouble deniers as well.

Stephen LoRusso