Is George Zimmerman Right?

It's time to listen to George Zimmerman. Seriously, and I'll explain in a minute.

This week, the families of ten Sandy Hook victims filed a lawsuit against the gun manufacturer Bushmaster, which made the AR-15 rifle that Adam Lanza used to shoot and kill 27 people, including 20 children, on December 14th, 2012. The lawsuit, filed in Connecticut superior court, argues that Adam Lanza would not have been able to kill so many people in so little time without his “weapon of choice,” the Bushmaster-made AR-15 rifle. It says that, “the number of lives lost in those 264 seconds was made possible” by a gun that was “engineered to deliver maximum carnage with extreme efficiency.”

The lawsuit goes on to read, “As a result of selling AR-15s to the civilian market, individuals unfit to operate these weapons gain access to them...” The Sandy Hook families involved in the lawsuit also highlight the facts that “not a single state requires a mental-health examination of a potential purchaser of an AR-15,” and that purchasers are not asked to “answer questions about other individuals with whom they intend to share access.”

Requiring mental-health checks for anyone who wants to purchase and own a gun is a no-brainer and should be a requirement that both sides of the aisle can agree on. But, there should be another requirement for everyone who wants to own a gun: insurance.

Think about it. As long as guns are accessible and available, both unintentional and intentional gun deaths will happen. That’s just reality, because guns are, by definition, deadly weapons.

According to GunViolenceArchive.Org, yesterday alone, there were at least 45 incidents where a gun was fired, and in those incidents, 21 people lost their lives, shattering forever 21 families.

It’s time we start treating guns - at the very least - the way we treat cars. Like guns, cars can kill people. Each year, tens of thousands of Americans die in car accidents. Cars are two-ton pieces of speeding metal that, if not used carefully, can kill in an instant. That’s why all drivers are required to insure themselves against accidents and deaths.

If someone gets in an accident and injures or kills another person, the insurance company pays the family of the victim, in an effort to compensate them for their expenses or loss. We should be using this same exact model with guns in America.

Anyone who wants to purchase and own a gun should be required by law to have liability insurance, so if they injure or kill somebody, the victim or the victim’s family will be covered, as well as the expenses of the shooter. Even George Zimmerman sees the logic in this.

Zimmerman called into a program on Armed American Radio earlier this week, basically complaining about how tough his life has become since he shot and killed Trayvon Martin. As part of his performance trying to make people feel sorry for him, Zimmerman actually made a good point. He said, ““Go to the range to practice, keep your guns in a safe location, and primarily, now that I know that I’m $2.5 million in debt, just in lawyers’ fees, I paid over $360,000 in hard costs to the state of Florida – just in, you know, copies, CDs, manuscripts, that kind of stuff – I would definitely invest in getting some type of self-defense insurance, and again, arming yourself with the knowledge of what you can do and what you should or shouldn’t do after the incident”

Guns have been, and always will be, dangerous weapons capable of injuring and killing people. That’s not going to change. So, it’s time we start treating them like the dangerous and deadly products that they are.

Nothing is going to bring back the thousands of Americans accidentally killed or wounded each year by irresponsible gun owners, or bring back the 20 children whose lives were cut tragically short at Sandy Hook Elementary. But if we start treating guns like we do cars and require gun owners to have liability insurance, people might just think twice about leaving their shotgun hanging around the house, keeping their handgun unlocked, or letting their kids get their hands on a military-style assault rifle.

Let’s start saving some lives and prevent families from having to go through the horrors that the Sandy Hook families have experienced.

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Thom Hartmann has written a dozen books covering ADD / ADHD - Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder.

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