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As I approach sixty years of age, I look back remembering how this
nation was when I was a boy. Times were a bit slower then, but it seems
to me that the pace of life allowed us to know our neighbors and to get
involved in community activities. Today it seems that for the most part
no one cares about their neighbors and a good part of the people
involved in the community do so because they have an agenda to pursue.
Schools are beginning to have as much security as our prisons. With the
recent rash of school shootings I can understand the precautions. I
wonder, what are we doing to resolve the underlying problem. What are we
teaching our children? The "we" I speak of are parents. Are we giving
our children the foundation that our parents gave us? I can tell you
what I was taught. Respect for others and their property, responsibility
for my own actions, hard work would be recognized and rewarded, to use
my initiative to solve my problems and not depend on some outside agency
to do it for me, and no matter what you had to do you supported yourself
and your family and did not depend on the government to support you.
School violence has been in the news all to frequently lately. We
have had shootings at several high schools across the nation in the last
few years. The media is quick to sensationalize these events with
coverage dragging on for as much as a year after the event. Of course
the main culprit is "firearms". "If there hadn't been guns available to
these young men this wouldn't have happened". That's pretty much the
standard media line. As I read about the shooting at Columbine I found
that these young men had been making bombs and setting them off for over
a year. I really find it hard to believe that their parents, given that
amount of time, had no idea of what they were doing. Has the media to
this day suggested that the cause of this tragedy might have been
parental guidance and control. Not that I have seen. It is easier to
blame an inanimate object, especially one that some in government would
like to see taken from the hands of ordinary citizens so they can go
forward with their own agenda. The gun control advocates pound their
fists on the podium demanding that government pass more gun control
measures. The attitude seems to be if it were not for guns being
available these young people would not be violent. These young people
are searching for something, could it be discipline and order? Most
young people I come in contact with today seem to lack both. I have
heard from several of them that just "pissing them off" is a reason to
answer with violence. No wonder we have problems in our schools.
What does this next generation have for an example to follow. First
, there is a "leader" who gets on national television and lies to the
face of the nation and faces no consequence for his actions. Movies that
soaked in violence and explicit sex to sell tickets and make fortunes
for their makers. Television shows that are equally as violent and some
with characters who have the morals of an alley cat. Talk shows that
seem to search out people with the most sordid lives and bring them on
to "tell all". Thank God for networks such as the History Channel and
Discovery or I wouldn't own a television set.
The biggest change I see in this nation is the erosion of the
family. While there are some who think it "Takes a Village" to raise
children, I think that a strong family structure is what is needed. I
for one would not want the government raising my children. For the most
part the government needs to butt out. Raising children who will become
productive citizens is hard work, but it is also a labor of love. My
children are grown and raising families of their own. They grew up
during a time when drugs and having sex were considered the thing to do
by their peers. My children knew how I felt about these subjects and
they also knew that we could talk about them or anything else they felt
the need to talk about. People today say that with the fast pace of
today's society they don't have enough time to spend with their
children. During the time my children were growing, I was in the
military and spent a lot of time away from home. When I was gone they
had their mothers support and when I was home again they knew they were
my highest priority. These same people who claim they don't have enough
time to spend with their children seem to find time to play sports, go
to the gym, have dinner out, etc. I fear today we are watching the "Me
Generation" raise their children and "me" is still the number one
One of the other big changes I have seen in this nation is
disregard of personal honor/integrity. I can remember in the mid fifties
watching my grandfather sell his entire crop for an excess of $50,000 on
a handshake. No paperwork, no team of lawyers, just a handshake and his
word that the deal was agreed to. The same held true for the man who had
bought his crop. Can you imagine this happening today? Not likely. I am
sure that there are still places in this country where a man's honor is
a prized commodity, where integrity is held higher than greed. I would
like to find those places. My grandfather use to tell me that a man
without honor was not a man. Are we passing on these type of values?
By now you are probably saying to yourself "This guys been rambling
on for quite a while, what does it have to do with the Second
Amendment?" My answer to that is "Maybe nothing, maybe a lot." I think
it depends on how you interpret what I have said.

Submitted by David Grayhawk