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HomeSocial and PoliticalCrimeCertified Arms instructor open fires in USA, 22 dead

Certified Arms instructor open fires in USA, 22 dead

On a fateful evening on October 25 in Lewiston, Maine, US, a horrific incident unfolded, leaving at least 22 people dead in multiple shootings. The city, known for its safety and peaceful atmosphere, was shaken to its core as its residents grappled with the shock and fear of the tragic events.

The Tragic Events: The series of shootings that rocked Lewiston occurred on a chilling Wednesday night, according to reports from CNN. Lewiston City Councilor Robert McCarthy, whose home was near one of the shooting locations, described the ordeal as “a real scary event. In an interview with CNN, he said: “We locked all the doors. We grabbed the guns. We’re just waiting to hear that they catch the individual or individuals that did this.” The Lewiston Police Department swiftly identified Robert Card as a person of interest in the two shootings. Card, a 40-year-old man, was declared “armed and dangerous” in a Facebook post by the police. Shockingly, Card had a background as a certified firearms instructor and was a member of the US Army Reserves. Residents in both Lisbon and Lewiston were advised to stay inside as a manhunt for Robert Card is ongoing.

Where it happened: Lewiston, Maine, with a population of approximately 38,493 people, is a relatively small city known for its safety and community atmosphere. Home to Bates College, a private liberal arts institution, it has been consistently ranked as one of America’s safest cities. However, this incident has shattered the calmness that the residents once enjoyed. The shootings occurred at seemingly ordinary locations. Just in Time Recreation, a family-friendly establishment, first witnessed the violence while families were enjoying their evening, playing games. Next was the Schemengees Bar & Grille Restaurant, a venue for parties and celebrations, according to CNN.

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Law Enforcement Response: Maine law enforcement officials have mobilised hundreds of police officers across the state in their efforts to locate Robert Card. The public was urged to provide any information about his whereabouts, and residents were instructed to remain sheltered. In an interview with CNN, Lisbon Chief of Police Ryan McGee emphasised the importance of citizens reporting anything suspicious and confirmed that his department was working tirelessly to ensure public safety. Latest reports from multiple sources suggest that federal agencies, including the FBI, ATF, DHS, and others, have joined the search for the person of interest connected to the shootings. The collective effort reflects the gravity of the situation and the determination to bring the perpetrator to justice.

The Broader Issue of Mass Shootings in the US: The tragedy in Lewiston, Maine, is yet another painful reminder of the recurring issue of mass shootings in the United States. While the focus is on this specific incident, it’s essential to address the larger problem that the country faces. The United States experiences a disproportionate number of mass shootings compared to most other countries. Several factors contribute to this, including the widespread availability of firearms, gaps in mental health care, and societal issues. A 2023 survey by KFF revealed that nearly 1 in 5 US adults have had a family member killed by a gun, and about 1 in 6 adults have witnessed a shooting injury. A tweet from the GVA (Gun Violence Archive) on X has confirmed that there have been 565 mass shootings in the US in just 10 months of 2023.

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Furthermore, in comparison to many other developed nations, the United States has a high frequency of mass shootings. While no nation is immune to gun violence, several countries have taken proactive measures to address this issue and reduce the number of mass shootings.

Australia: In 1996, Australia experienced a mass shooting in Port Arthur, Tasmania, which left 35 people dead. In response, the Australian government implemented stringent gun control laws, including a nationwide buyback program. Subsequently, there has not been a single mass shooting in Australia in the decades following this policy change.

United Kingdom: The UK witnessed a horrific mass shooting in Hungerford in 1987, followed by the Dunblane school shooting in 1996. Both incidents led to significant gun control reforms, including stricter firearm licensing and a ban on handguns. The result has been a marked reduction in gun-related crimes and mass shootings.

New Zealand: After the Christchurch mosque shootings in 2019, New Zealand swiftly implemented new gun control measures, banning military-style semi-automatic weapons and introducing a buyback program. This quick response was aimed at preventing further incidents.

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The Ongoing Debate: The United States has faced numerous mass shootings, and despite public outcry, legislative changes have been slow to materialize. The debate on gun control in the US is multifaceted, with arguments about Second Amendment rights, self-defence, and individual freedom clashing with the urgent need to reduce gun violence. While many support and protest for the implementation of stricter gun control measures, some argue that responsible gun owners should not be facing the consequences for the actions of a few individuals. But in the end, it is clear that America needs to do better in controlling gun violence because those “few individuals” have evidently been the cause of hundreds and thousands of deaths. Sources: CNN, First Post By: Ashbiha Fathima

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