Late afternoon on Feb. 14., legendary star Boy George added an anti-gun tweet to the tragic shooting by double-amputee Oscar Pistorius of his girlfriend. Apparently, Boy George sought to make the point that if Pistorius had not owned a gun, his girlfriend, Reeva Steemcamp, would still be alive.
On his Twitter account, Boy George wrote:
The Oscar Pistorius story is so tragic. Another reason not to own a gun? How your life can turn on a dime!
An immediate pro-gun backlash hit Twitter following Boy George's tweet. The majority of the tweets were quick to point to South Africa's extraordinarily high crime rate. For example, one protested, "@BoyGeorge True, but sadly in SA many people live in constant terrible fear and sleeping with a gun under your pillow is common."
Another wrote, "@BoyGeorge but then again...in South Africa you really can't afford to be without a gun..." Responses on Twitchy, where Boy George's tweet was briefly featured, ranged from a reminder that " OJ Simpson wrote a book on how to kill without a gun," to "Good reason not to own a firearm if you have no self control of yourself and anger issues. Good thing 99.99% of firearms owners do not have his issues."
According to today's update from The New York Times, Pistorius will be charged with premeditated murder, "the most serious murder charge under South African criminal law." Under South African law, if Pistorius is convicted under that charge, he would not be eligible for parole for 25 years.
Newspapers are trying hard to discourage a "rush to judgement" in the tragic Pistorius case. Although the first reports suggested that the shooting was a tragic accident, police have done away with that notion. In the past, the police have been summoned for previous domestic disputes at this address.
Though the pattern may suggest this was a tragedy waiting to happen, Jenna Edkins, a lady who claims to have dated Pistorius for over five years defended him on Twitter:
"I would just like to say, I have dated Oscar on off for 5 YEARS, NOT ONCE has he EVER lifted a finger to me, made me fear for my life..."