Father’s Day vs the Second Amendment

This morning, on Father’s Day, one of my neighbors shot his wife and then shot himself. Their 14 year old son was at the store. He came home and found them, and then I guess he told his grandparents, who lived in the front house, where they’ve lived for more than thirty years. They are a large, Mexican-American,   hardworking family, except for the one who killed himself. He never wanted to work, and preferred polishing his car. When he was little, he was obsessed with fireworks, and he discussed them all year long with my son, who was the same age.

Eddie and his fireworks, we used to say. He was particularly interested in ‘M 80s.’ He got his girlfriend pregnant when they were both seventeen, and he was very proud of himself. He named the kid Eddie Jr. As soon as Eddie Jr. was old enough to hold his neck up, his dad adorned him in gold chains, just like a little gang banger. It seemed kind of tragic to me; Eddie Jr. was groomed to be a lowlife, just like his father. Soon, Eddie Jr. was playing out on our street, bullying my younger son, just like Eddie Sr. had once bullied my other son. Those Eddies, we started saying. History repeating itself, etc.

Today, Eddie Jr. was running around the street, wearing his gold chains and dark sunglasses. He told me that his parents were dead, and that his middle school graduation is next Wednesday. He was concerned about the two tickets he had paid for.

What the fuck!   The street filled up with sobbing relatives. Eddie’s sister was beside herself. She couldn’t stop screaming “Why? Why?” I held her baby, mostly for my own comfort, while she sobbed with her elderly mother, who looked very, very tired and shell-shocked. Relatives continued to arrive, women crying and men trying to hold it together. The relatives of the dead wife arrived but kept their distance from Eddie’s house. They were angry as well as distraught. It was terrible.

From what I could put together, it seems like Eddie was depressed and increasingly unwilling to leave the house. His wife, Nellie, who always had a fulltime job, was sick of him and wanted to leave. I always felt sorry for her. She was always so friendly when we complained about the weather or our kids.

I can’t feel a   glimmer of empathy for Eddie, even though I guess he was a desperate soul, in the end. Why in the world should that fucking Eddie have a fucking gun? That’s the part I will never be able to understand.

7 Responses to “Father’s Day vs the Second Amendment”

  1. Lenny Cutler Says:

    Well, If Eddy had a criminal record, or was ever committed to a mental institution, or was not a legal resident of the US….then Eddy should not have been able to buy a gun.

    But Eddy, as you say, was kind of a low life….Perhaps Eddy could just buy a Gun from his low life buddies.

    Bottom line….Eddy could easily get a gun illegally or legally. If Eddy was legally able to buy one….well that’s life….in a free society…where one is free to buy a weapon for hunting, target shooting or self defense.

    I am hopeful, that if Eddy was coming down the street with his gun to blow your head off…you too might want to have one to defend yourself.

    As for the illegal guns….well that’s all about law enforcement and local government and federal doing what they can to crack down on illlegal sales.

    You don’t indicate what kind of gun was used…..

    But a lot of these kinds of domestic killings are done with shotguns or rifles used for hunting.

    Frankly, if Eddy was depressed….it sounds like no one in the family intervened to get him help….so maybe that’s what’s really to blame here.

  2. Sister Wolf Says:

    Lenny, I see that you are passionately against any move toward gun control, so there’s nothing I could say to change your view.

    My question was rhetorical, though. What I meant was, why should this unstable young man have a gun, when he’s not a hunter or law enforcement officer? The gun could only produce a tragic consequence. If anyone was coming down the street to blow my head off, my last thought would be “Fuck, we need gun control!”

    Depressed Eddies will always exist, as will alienated college kids. Our ‘free society’ restricts us from countless things in the name of the greater good. But I’m sure you’ve heard that one before.

    thanks for taking the time to comment.

  3. Sonja Says:

    Oh, I’m so sorry. You and your neighbors must be reeling in shock and sadness and anger and disbelief… I’m so sorry.

  4. SueB Says:

    Two of my dad’s brothers killed themselves with guns. One did it in front of his wife, to prove a point “Well, if THAT’s the way you feel…”

    I’m not sure how I feel about gun control. On one hand, our country is SO dangerous because of the availability of guns. On the other hand, I think our form of government is fairly stable partly because they know we are well-armed and would shoot anyone who attempted a coup.

  5. Mark Says:

    “I am hopeful, that if Eddy was coming down the street with his gun to blow your head off…you too might want to have one to defend yourself.”

    I’m going out to WalMart right now and buying a gun in case someone comes down the street with his gun to blow my head off. Blog Mistress, you’re far too diplomatic with Lenny.

    I’m also buying a gun in case someone gratuitiously uses ellipses. After all, it’s my right as a tax-paying, God-fearing American.

  6. Ghetto Says:

    If not a gun then a knife, or a stick, or a clenched fist.

    God damn shame whatever way it goes.

  7. Godammit, I’m Mad! » Blog Archive » 4th of July Says:

    [...] wrote about Eddie here, from another perspective, and without the greater sense of tragedy I have today on this endless [...]

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