America – the land of the free?

More like the land of the completely deranged.

You’ve probably caught up with the news coming out of the States by now. For those who aren’t across it, at 7pm on Thursday night in Lafayette, Louisiana last week – which was just before lunch on Friday, local Gold Coast time – a 58-year-old gunman opened fire in a movie theatre.

Another week, another horrific mass murder.


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Movie-goers were about 20 minutes into a screening of the romantic comedy, Trainwrecked, when the gunman stood up and began randomly shooting into the crowd, before killing himself.

At the time of writing this, two of his victims had passed away, with a further seven in hospital, some with life-threatening injuries.

Sandy Phillips, whose daughter Jessica Ghawi was among the 12 people killed in the Aurora theatre massacre three years ago, tweeted her shock at this latest violent shooting.

“Here we go again America,” she wrote. “THIS is freedom?”

Look, I love the United States. It’s a great place to visit, they produce excellent television shows and Disneyland truly is the Happiness Place on Earth™.

But when it comes to violence and personal safety, that country is seriously messed up. For that reason alone, I would never want to live there.

As it stands, with guns so freely available, nowhere is safe. Not movie theatres. Not churches. Not primary schools populated by sweet six-year-old children.

What is going to take for US citizens and lawmakers to realise that ‘the right to bear arms’ has been manipulated beyond recognition?

With these types of horrifying scenes filling news headlines week after week, are they ever going to accept that they way they’ve always done things, might not be the smartest way to do things going forward?

Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal, who raced to Lafayette as soon as the news broke, told the media:

“I think I speak for every mum and dad who just wants to hug their kids. This is an awful night for Lafayette. This is an awful night for Louisiana. This is an awful night for the United States.”

It is an awful night – truly, beyond tragic.

But unfortunately, it’s not an uncommon one.

Here’s your chance to get your opinion in front of a larger audience. And earn a dollar! Anything from the minutiae to the meaningful, the heartfelt to the humorous, if you’ve got an issue or a rant you think Gold Coasters need to read submit it to The Meddler. There’s $50 for each contribution published. Contributions should be under 400 words, please supply contact details including a phone number. The Meddler reserves the right to edit articles submitted. Please send to news@mygc.com.au

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