Stop Shooting for a Moment?

It’s a stretch, but the evolving Covid-19 moment seems a good time to pause injury and death from shooting where possible.

In Mexico it would abet the diverting of already shaky personnel assets from cartel warfare to virus containment, potentially lessening misery for the 40%-plus of the population living in poverty who will bear the plague’s brunt.

Mexico registered 2,585 homicides in March – the highest monthly figure since records began in 1997 – putting 2020 on track to break last year’s record total for murders.

(David Agren, “Mexico murder rate reaches new high as violence rages amid Covid-19 spread,” theguardian.com, 4-3-20)

In the U.S. it would free up trauma surgeons like Dr. Kaufman (above) to assist more victims of the pandemic.

Firearm injuries are calamitous for the more than 120,000 people shot each year in the United States and their families. But the consequences for our health system are even more dire as we fight the coronavirus.

We need I.C.U. beds, we need ventilators, we need personnel to care for the wave of Covid-19 patients. But gunshot victims are now fighting for space and resources inside America’s overcrowded I.C.U.s.

(Elinore Kaufman, “Please Stop Shooting. We Need the Beds,” NYTimes, 4-1-20)

To the NRA, currently lobbying to keep gun stores open, I say, “No time to argue with you, my Second Amendment friends. Firearm purchases are essential during a pandemic if you say so.”

To my fellow citizens waiting in long queus to buy firearms I say, “Buy your weapons and ammo, take them home, and put them in safekeeping. They are by your side when you choose to need them.”

I don’t dispute the quixotic nature of advocating a voluntary moratorium on shooting; absent any authority that could actually suppress the fire, however, delusion guides me as it did the Knight of the Mournful Countenance.

(c) 2020 JMN

About JMN

I live in Texas and devote much of my time to easel painting on an amateur basis. I stream a lot of music, mostly jazz, throughout the day, and watch Netflix and Prime Video for entertainment. I like to read and memorize poetry.
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