About a week or so ago, there was a shooting at the Gable House bowling alley in Torrance. I’m sure many of you have heard about it, it’s been the big talk of the south bay for the last week due to the fact that we all thought we were safe from all of that. Torrance and much else of the South Bay is thought of as pretty safe. Personally, after living here for 18 years have felt safe enough to do stuff such as leave my car open when I go and drop something off or leave the door to the house open if it’s a warm day out. These are things that became a pretty normal habit after a while because I did feel so safe living in Torrance. Now I realize that I should be more careful. Not just in Torrance but anywhere in the U.S. because of the leniency on guns.
California is one of the states with the most strict gun policies in the U.S. The policy says that rights are very restricted and very limited issue (NRA-ILA). Yet, there was still a man that had been in prison for murder and released after 17 years that was in possession of a gun. This man killed 3 people and injured 4. When am I going to stop hearing stories like these? When is this going to stop? I’m sure everyone is asking these sort of questions.
France, on the other hand is much stricter with gun control. In order to own a gun in France, “you need a hunting or sporting license which needs to be repeatedly renewed and requires a psychological evaluation” (Washington Post). Unfortunately, there are still shootings in France such as the Charlie Hebdo shooting. But they happen a lot less frequently than in America. In the last couple years alone I have heard of a half a dozen shootings or even more in the U.S. It’s happening so frequently that, that is now one of the big stereotypes about the U.S.
For instance, when I talked to Leo about what he thought of the U.S. he mentioned being scared to come because of all the shootings that he had heard off. Of course, he lives in France and that is generally what is broadcasted on TV about America but still… I assured him that Torrance was safe and that though it might be happening in the sketchier parts of LA and the U.S. in general, we were safe. Well, a week after Léo arrived the shooting occurred at Gable House! Easy to say he didn’t trust me as much as he did before. And his fear came back.
France is not perfect though. There are plenty of ways that people get artillery through the dark web, smuggling and such. But the facts are that for every 100,000 people in France about 0.2 are killed from firearms a year while in America that number is 2.8 (Washington Post). That’s a wild difference. It’s unfortunate that we have to talk about how many people are killed from guns a year but that’s what it’s come to. I definitely prefer how strict the laws are in France.