By Vladimir Gladkov
A new shooting tragedy has shaken America. A 23-year-old ex-marine opened fire at his co-workers at a Pathmark supermarket in the early hours on Friday gunning down two people – an 18-year-old woman and a 24-year-old man. The killer, Terence Tyler, then turned the gun on himself. According to police, he was armed with a handgun and a Kalashnikov assault rifle.
The recent shooting served as yet another reminder of the problem of easy access to firearms in the US. Mass killings perpetrated by mentally ill people have become part of everyday life. Every year dozens of people become victims to psychos who can easily purchase all sorts of firearms, including automatic weapons.
The tragedy in New Jersey followed the scenario of a number of similar incidents which have occurred in the US over the past few years, including the Columbine high school massacre, and the Colorado theatre shooting. The killers are invariably identified as individuals suffering from psychic disorders who resort to weapons in order to vent their frustration at failing to integrate into society.
Psychopaths and “troubled” teenagers who tend to resolve their problems through violence are part of any society. But the surprising thing is that in America, where more and more innocent lives are lost to psycho killers every year, the laws regulating the sale of weapons are getting softer.
Paradoxically, purchasing firearms has become less of a problem since the Columbian school massacre. Judging by a string of tragic incidents of late, a mentally unstable person armed with a gun poses a far more real threat than terrorists, whom special services continue to portray as the main threat. Even the staunchest of weapons enthusiasts demand tougher laws concerning the sale of weapons. According to a recent survey, most Americans who possess weapons and are members of the National Rifle Association support the demand.
This, however, seems to be at odds with the interests of the weapons lobby. Naturally, weapons makers want to sell their products to a greater number of customers. Surprisingly, US politicians, like Republicans led by Mitt Romney, continue to jig to the tune of corporations, or hush up the issue altogether, like Democrats run by Barack Obama. It was only recently that Obama ventured to suggest changes to the legislation. The unscrupulousness of political leaders causes a lot of suffering to ordinary Americans, each of which risks falling prey to a new armed psychopath.