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America's Selfie: Smile for the camera

Smile for camera
Smile for camera
Getty images

In today’s American society Selfies have become all the rage. Selfies are pictures taken of oneself for public display on social networks.

If America took a Selfie, there would be a constant recurring image captured in too many of the photos. Depending on the angle of the camera and surrounding activities, this permeating prototype will either dominate or subjugate the humans in the photo.

America’s Selfies would be marred by the visual impact of firearms.

For this Examiner, the following true incidents personify some brief images in America’s Selfie social network. Fictitious names have been used in order to maintain confidentiality agreements.

Betty adopts a girl

Betty was walking down the street in Atlanta, GA. Shots were fired from a passing car. Betty was struck in the back and her spine was severed. Betty has been confined to a wheel chair ever since.

Realizing that she would never be able to have a children, Betty adopted a little girl and has fought to maintain her day to day going-ons as normal as possible.

Willie will never father children

Willie was 21 years old when he was struck down by gunfire during a gang shoot out in Detroit.

On this particular occasion Willie insisted that he was not in direct conflict with the two battling gangs--but, he was in the wrong place at the wrong time and he did have a history of “beefing” with one of the groups.

Willie recalls lying in the grass with his face buried in the ground’s moisture. He bobs his head back and forth when he retells the part about hearing bullets whiz past his head. After the shooting ceased he tried to roll over on his back but he could not.

His next recollection about the incident was being on a gurney in the hospital, having his bloody clothes cut off of him, hollering for pain medication as the emergency room staff poked fingers in the bullets holds that riddled his body while he went in and out of consciousness.

Willie also sustained a spinal cord injury that placed him in a wheelchair for the rest of his life. While in rehab, Willie met a young male who was also confined to a wheelchair after being shot in the back.

The other young man eventually shot himself in the head because he could not live the rest of his life without the use of his limbs.

Willie graphically details how the smell of urine can overtake someone confined to a wheelchair if they do not change their “pee bag” on a regular basis. He describes the extreme anger that one must channel in other directions in order to combat depression and suicidal thoughts. He will never be able to father children.

Johnny destroys the family

Johnny lived in a house with an extended family on the Westside of Detroit. He often had major arguments with his nephew who slept in the attic. After one night of bitter arguing, Johnny waited until his nephew went to sleep. Johnny crept up the stairs, and closed the attic door.

He put a pillow over his nephew’s face and placed a gun on top of the pillow and pulled the trigger. As Johnny dragged the body down the stairs, his mother heard the thumping of her grandson’s dead weight as his body hit each stair. To her extreme horror, she watched her son trying to conceal the body of her grandson in a carpet that was soaked with blood.

Nadine and Donald break up

Nadine and her husband Donald separated. Donald filed for divorce and moved in with his newly found female friend in Ecorse, MI.

Nadine and Donald had two children together and Nadine had a son prior to marrying Donald. Nadine and Donald kept guns in their home and were not especially mindful about gun safety.

Nadine told her son to call his step father and tell him that “Ma-ma left us home alone and we are hungry”. When Donald attempted to enter the house Nadine shot him in the face. Donald’s funeral was closed casket.

Clyde stays out of jail

Clyde knew that his wife had been unfaithful. He was chasing her down a road in Little Rock, Ark. waving his pistol in the air telling her that, “You are a dead b….”!

His wife fell to the ground getting down on her knees crying, begging him to spare her life. Clyde put the gun to her head and the gun misfired three times. At that moment Clyde started to sob and threw the gun into a nearby lake.

In hindsight Clyde was very grateful that the gun misfired. He was emotionally charged and extremely enraged. Yet, he also recalls thinking that he might end up in jail for the rest of his life, or face a lengthy trial pleading insanity because of a cheating wife. Neither scenario appealed to him nor he thanked “God Almighty” for sparing his life and hers.

Clyde divorced his cheating wife and has never put a gun in his hand again. He knows that guns in the hands of some people translate into a lifetime of regrets and he literally trembles when he realizes what might have been.

We are a gun toting nation and with every passing year Americans are obtaining more privileges to carry concealed and unconcealed weapons. Mass shootings occur every few years and the nation goes belly up with shock for a few months. Sandy Hook could not even slow down the nation’s race to bear arms.

There is no common medium

Many homeowners keep firearms in their homes in order to protect life and property. Likewise, anyone who breaks into and enters another’s’ home should prepare to die. No one should never, ever, break into a home with the purpose of stealing and causing harm to the inhabitants.

Ever since the Second Amendment to the Constitution was printed on paper there has been an ongoing debate over the meaning and interpretation of the Amendment with particular confusion over the introductory clause. Most gun advocates feel that the “right to bear arms” is a seamless invitation with unlimited legal justifications to shoot and kill.

Make no mistake about it, the killing of each American is a death sentence for America.

Be that as it may, where are you on the nation’s Selfie? Is your camera poised to aim or would you rather shoot?

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