We don’t do ourselves any favors of we pretend that everyone in possession of a firearm is a saint. Thankfully, no one actually does that. We all acknowledge that the bad guys have guns, for example.
Then we have those who are, well, less than stable.
Yes, there are laws in place meant to keep those unstable individuals from having guns, but the truth is that few people are adjudicated as “mentally defective” and are thus able to buy firearms, even if they probably shouldn’t.
An Indiana man may well be a prime example.
Just before 5:00 Sunday afternoon, police were called to the 2800 block of North 13th 1/2 Street. That’s where a man reportedly walked the street aimlessly, firing shots from two handguns.
When the police arrived, they learned the man, later identified as Thai A. Leonard, 36, returned to his home. Officers set up a perimeter around the house. They said Leonard left his home a short time later, but he wouldn’t follow officer commands.
As a result of his inability to follow police orders, he got to experience the wonder and joy that is called “being tased.”
Police conducted a search and found multiple firearms.
Now, this is what we know. This is all we know.
We don’t know how he got his guns and we don’t know if he can even have them legally at this point. He probably can, though, since he was only charged with Criminal Recklessness with a Deadly Weapon and Intimidation with a Deadly Weapon, rather than possession by a prohibited person.
We also don’t know if he was historically unstable or if this was a new occurrence for him. One would imagine if he were a frequent flier, that would be noted in the news report. Since it wasn’t, well, we just don’t know.
But we need to understand and acknowledge that yes, some people use their firearms irresponsibly.
What we also need to point out is just how rare this kind of thing is.
I look at news reports from all over the nation and this is not a common thing. It happened in Indiana but, frankly, I can’t remember when the last time I saw something similar was.
Sure, there are other ways people are irresponsible with their firearms, but nothing like this, and even then, it’s rare.
After all, we’re a nation of nearly 332 million people. There are an estimated 400 million firearms in the United States. If irresponsibility with firearms were common, it’s unlikely we’d even see news reports of it. After all, you don’t hear about fender benders from your local news, much less from the major media outlets, now do you? That’s because they’re so common they’re no longer newsworthy.
Millions upon millions of gun owners have their firearms and use and store them responsibly. They did nothing wrong.
But this guy did and now he’s going to face the music for it. As he should. His recklessness could have cost someone their life. This is not a responsible gun owner whether he was a lawful gun owner or not.