When Europeans arrived America, they faced fierce opposition from the native Indians and bandits from amongst their own folks. To defend themselves, they started owning guns. Then came the war of independence and the civil war.
Thereafter, Americans began to developed an unusual appetite for guns even as the country built up one of the most formidable security apparatus ever known. Yet, nothing was done to restrict the unnecessary quest by Americans to own guns. Rather, the right to own guns became part of the country’s constitution.
200 years later, America has become the most violent country in the world at a cost too frightening to quantify. Homicide and mass killings are so common place that they are considered normal. Yet, Americans have refused to let go of their guns.
What is the point? A prospective social malaise is better nipped in the bud rather than attempting a cure way down the road when it has festered into a deadly epidemic. Once affection clings to things that hurt(Shakespeare), it becomes very difficult for the centre to hold (Achebe).
The current spate of killings around the country is spinning out of control with consequences too scary to contemplate. Yet, we are becoming gradually numb to the bloodletting. Rather than talk about the horror, we now argue about the number of those killed. Or about some wayward acts of politicians.
Is it too late to reverse this ugly trend? Only time will tell! For now, the country is moving rapidly towards the precipice and the roof may cave in on all of us.