Churches fail to reduce gun and drug violence across US: Analyst
In the background of this, a gunman on Friday killed 20 children aged between five and ten. An investigation is underway. This has shaken America, a society progressively desensitized to senseless violence and so protective of their right to bear arms. Blame is being leveled at the laxity in US gun legislation.
Press TV has interviewed Reverend Edward Pinckney, Director at NAACP, Michigan about this issue. Joining him in this news analysis is Dr. Randy Short of Dignity, Human Rights and Peace Organization, Washington and Press TV correspondent on the scene, Hank Flynn.
The following is an approximate transcription of the interview.
Press TV: Do you agree with Dr. Short?
Pinckney: I agree with Dr. Short 100 percent. He is absolutely correct that they’ve got these people hooked up to all these (pharmaceutical) drugs, but we have another enemy here… The NRA, the National Rifle Association.
They won’t even let you or allow you to talk about that organization on TV. They have over 300 million guns spread around the community. The United States has a population of a little over 300 million people. So if we have 300 million guns floating around the United States, what do you think, everyone is carrying a gun but me.
So I see a major problem here and I think that one of the things that is happening today is that they are flooding our communities with these guns and it’s time for us to take a stand dealing with the drugs and dealing with the guns. So you’ve got two enemies there, two main killers, the drugs and the pistol.
We’ve got to take a stand. Until we step up in this country and say no more, it’s going to continue. I believe it’s going to get worse before it gets better.
Press TV: What does it mean in a society when the welfare of the nation is not the priority or should it be the priority of the politicians?
Pinckney: It should be for the welfare of the people, of the nation. One of the things I just mentioned about the NRA and the people who are for guns and who are against guns, that’s an issue we need to put on the table immediately and start discussing that issue.
They always say that guns don’t kill people, people kill people, but you also have to have a gun in order to kill somebody.
I believe that if we can proceed to a whole different level… it is the conditioning of the country itself that is driving these people to do these things like the pharmaceutical companies and different things like that, the drugs that they take.
I would imagine and I’m just going out on a limb to say this that that young man probably was on some kind of drug and I don’t mean some kind of drug like coffee… To kill children like that you almost have to be on drugs, I mean, how could you walk up and kill your mother and kill children – two no nos – two major no nos.
So if anybody is doing anything on that level, it is time that we take a look at the gun. The gun is the issue and decide what we’re going to do next. We need to start making plans on the future and how we’re going to deal with this issue because it is not going to stop here, it is going to continue as long as the conditions here in the United States remain the same.
Press TV: You are a religious man obviously a man of the cloth, there are some that say a lot of this relates to a spiritual void that is taking place in the United States. Your take on that aspect of it?
Pinckney: I agree with you 100 percent on that issue because some of the churches are not doing what they’re supposed to do. And you will find that a lot of churches, a lot of ministers are not in the community. You see, when you’re not out in the community you create a problem and that’s the disconnection that you have.
One of the things that I myself like to do, I like to be right in the middle of everything; I like to go out and tell people… what happened in Connecticut like it did.
We have issues ourselves here, but the point is you have to be there, the ministry the religious front you need to be involved with the community a little bit more, you cannot stay inside that pulpit of that church and not go into the community and that’s where the disconnect is. It is strictly right there and we have to get out there whether we like it or not. And that’s what I do.