We don't have a gun problem. Americans are just super extra evil, crazy, and stupid.

A gun is an inanimate object. It can’t do anything on its own.

Like any other tool, the person using a gun determines its use, right?

Therefore—obviously—our astronomical number of guns and comparatively loose gun laws aren't to blame for America’s 33,000 firearm deaths per year. Guns aren’t the reason that Americans are ten times more likely to be killed by guns than citizens of other developed nations. Guns aren’t why our gun-related murder rate is 25 times higher and our gun suicide rate is eight times higher than 22 other high-income nations. [1]


I mean, a gun can’t shoot itself, therefore guns have nothing to do with gun death statistics.

The fact that the U.S. accounts for 90 percent of all women, 91 percent of all children under 14, and 92 percent of people between ages 15 and 25 killed by guns among high-income nations [2] has absolutely nothing to do with guns. Many of those other countries have plenty of guns, too. But guns don’t kill people, people kill people, so clearly it's an issue with our people.

People with guns in other countries kill people too. Somehow, American people are just super extra killy with the guns.

The fact that we have enough guns in our country to arm every American citizen has no bearing on our gun violence rates, since guns don't kill people. Neither does the fact that we have loose gun regulations in comparison to other developed nations. When gun violence occurs, it’s the person holding the gun that’s to blame, not the gun itself.

In fact, the more guns the better, because even though statistics say that more guns equals more gun violence,[3] and more guns causes confusion for law enforcement, and people who have actually been in gunfights debunking this idea, we all know that the only way to stop a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun.

It’s not a gun problem, it’s a heart problem. Evil doesn’t follow laws. Evil will always find a way.

Yes, evil—not guns—is to blame for America’s gun violence problem.

Of course, the fact that evil also exists in other nations means that the only logical conclusion is that Americans must be more evil than people in other nations. And not just by a little bit. Our evil is so ubiquitous that no other developed nation has anywhere near our gun death rates. In fact, if you take away official armed conflict casualties (which seems fair, since we don’t have any official armed conflict happening on our soil), America’s gun death rate is also higher than Sudan, Iran, Syria, Turkey, Lebanon, the West Bank, Gaza, and Jordan. [4]

So. Much. Evil. In. America.

Clearly, our population is possessed by demons or something. Satan seems to have a heck of a foothold here in the U.S., eh? Aren't we lucky?

Then again, maybe it’s not so much evil American spirits. Maybe it’s more about mental health than actual evil.

Still definitely not about guns, though. Our easy access to weapons that have the capacity to kill two dozen people in not even as many seconds has absolutely nothing to do with mass shootings. Americans are just way, way, way more likely than people in other countries to have a screw loose. We have some kind of inherent tendency to go off the deep end and commit heinous acts of violence with semi-automatic firearms. I mean, it’s not our fault, it just must be the way Americans are hard-wired, since it’s obviously not about how our country approaches gun use.

Of course, not all gun deaths are due to people wishing harm upon others. A large percentage of gun deaths are suicides—clearly a mental health issue, which has nothing whatsoever to do with the immediacy and almost guaranteed success of using a firearm to commit suicide compared to other methods.

Some gun deaths are accidental, too. But the fact that our accidental gun death rate is also sky high compared to other developed nations doesn’t mean it’s a problem with guns or laws. Guns aren’t accidentally shooting people all by themselves, folks! That’s a brain problem, not a gun problem. Americans are obviously just dumber than people in other countries, woefully unable to figure out how to not accidentally shoot themselves or how to keep their guns out of the hands of toddlers.

See? It’s crystal clear that guns aren’t the issue. Americans are.

The United States having a gun for every man, woman and child and comparatively loose gun regulation has zero to do with how our gun violence rates compare with other developed nations. America just has far more evil, crazy, and stupid people than other countries do. It’s the only reasonable explanation.

Don’t let that fool you, though. We are still—somehow, don’t ask me how—the Greatest Country on Earth. So if you don’t like it here, you can always go move to one of those semi-socialist European countries where healthcare is universal, guns are highly regulated, and parents don’t have to remind their kids to pay attention during active shooter drills when they send them off to school.

I’ll be sitting proud here in the good ol’ U.S. of A., reminding my kids that guns don’t kill people, people kill people.

Sometimes lots of people at once.

Most of the time with guns.

But only every other week or so.

My thoughts and prayers are with the victims. Every time, of course.

Sources:

[1] http://www.amjmed.com/article/S0002-9343(15)01030-X/fulltext

[2] http://www.amjmed.com/article/S0002-9343(15)01030-X/fulltext

[3] http://www.newsweek.com/nras-more-guns-less-crime-theory-debunked-new-stanford-analysis-630173

[4] https://www.npr.org/sections/goatsandsoda/2017/10/06/555861898/gun-violence-how-the-u-s-compares-to-other-countries

This post originally appeared on Motherhood and More. You can read it here.

Moricz was banned from speaking up about LGBTQ topics. He found a brilliant workaround.

Senior class president Zander Moricz was given a fair warning: If he used his graduation speech to criticize the “Don’t Say Gay” law, then his microphone would be shut off immediately.

Moricz had been receiving a lot of attention for his LGBTQ activism prior to the ceremony. Moricz, an openly gay student at Pine View School for the Gifted in Florida, also organized student walkouts in protest and is the youngest public plaintiff in the state suing over the law formally known as the Parental Rights in Education law, which prohibits the discussion of sexual orientation or gender identity in grades K-3.

Though well beyond third grade, Moricz nevertheless was also banned from speaking up about the law, gender or sexuality. The 18-year-old tweeted, “I am the first openly-gay Class President in my school’s history–this censorship seems to show that they want me to be the last.”

However, during his speech, Moricz still delivered a powerful message about identity. Even if he did have to use a clever metaphor to do it.

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Leah Menzies/TikTok

Leah Menzies had no idea her deceased mother was her boyfriend's kindergarten teacher.

When you start dating the love of your life, you want to share it with the people closest to you. Sadly, 18-year-old Leah Menzies couldn't do that. Her mother died when she was 7, so she would never have the chance to meet the young woman's boyfriend, Thomas McLeodd. But by a twist of fate, it turns out Thomas had already met Leah's mom when he was just 3 years old. Leah's mom was Thomas' kindergarten teacher.

The couple, who have been dating for seven months, made this realization during a visit to McCleodd's house. When Menzies went to meet his family for the first time, his mom (in true mom fashion) insisted on showing her a picture of him making a goofy face. When they brought out the picture, McLeodd recognized the face of his teacher as that of his girlfriend's mother.

Menzies posted about the realization moment on TikTok. "Me thinking my mum (who died when I was 7) will never meet my future boyfriend," she wrote on the video. The video shows her and McLeodd together, then flashes to the kindergarten class picture.

“He opens this album and then suddenly, he’s like, ‘Oh my God. Oh my God — over and over again,” Menzies told TODAY. “I couldn’t figure out why he was being so dramatic.”

Obviously, Menzies is taking great comfort in knowing that even though her mother is no longer here, they can still maintain a connection. I know how important it was for me to have my mom accept my partner, and there would definitely be something missing if she wasn't here to share in my joy. It's also really incredible to know that Menzies' mother had a hand in making McLeodd the person he is today, even if it was only a small part.

@speccylee

Found out through this photo in his photo album. A moment straight out of a movie 🥲

♬ iris - 🫶

“It’s incredible that that she knew him," Menzies said. "What gets me is that she was standing with my future boyfriend and she had no idea.”

Since he was only 3, McLeodd has no actual memory of Menzies' mother. But his own mother remembers her as “kind and really gentle.”

The TikTok has understandably gone viral and the comments are so sweet and positive.

"No the chills I got omggg."

"This is the cutest thing I have watched."

"It’s as if she remembered some significance about him and sent him to you. Love fate 😍✨"

In the caption of the video, she said that discovering the connection between her boyfriend and her mom was "straight out of a movie." And if you're into romantic comedies, you're definitely nodding along right now.

Menzies and McLeodd made a follow-up TikTok to address everyone's positive response to their initial video and it's just as sweet. The young couple sits together and addresses some of the questions they noticed pop up. People were confused that they kept saying McLeodd was in kindergarten but only 3 years old when he was in Menzies' mother's class. The couple is Australian and Menzies explained that it's the equivalent of American preschool.

They also clarified that although they went to high school together and kind of knew of the other's existence, they didn't really get to know each other until they started dating seven months ago. So no, they truly had no idea that her mother was his teacher. Menzies revealed that she "didn't actually know that my mum taught at kindergarten."

"I just knew she was a teacher," she explained.

She made him act out his reaction to seeing the photo, saying he was "speechless," and when she looked at the photo she started crying. McLeodd recognized her mother because of the pictures Menzies keeps in her room. Cue the "awws," because this is so cute, I'm kvelling.

Joy

50-years ago they trade a grilled cheese for a painting. Now it's worth a small fortune.

Irene and Tony Demas regularly traded food at their restaurant in exchange for crafts. It paid off big time.

Photo by Gio Bartlett on Unsplash

Painting traded for grilled cheese worth thousands.

The grilled cheese at Irene and Tony Demas’ restaurant was truly something special. The combination of freshly baked artisan bread and 5-year-old cheddar was enough to make anyone’s mouth water, but no one was nearly as devoted to the item as the restaurant’s regular, John Kinnear.

Kinnear loved the London, Ontario restaurant's grilled cheese so much that he ordered it every single day, though he wouldn’t always pay for it in cash. The Demases were well known for bartering their food in exchange for odds and ends from local craftspeople and merchants.

“Everyone supported everyone back then,” Irene told the Guardian, saying that the couple would often trade free soup and a sandwich for fresh flowers. Two different kinds of nourishment, you might say.

And so, in the 1970s the Demases made a deal with Kinnear that he could pay them for his grilled cheese sandwiches with artwork. Being a painter himself and part of an art community, Kinnear would never run out of that currency.

Little did Kinnear—or anyone—know, eventually he would give the Demases a painting worth an entire lifetime's supply of grilled cheeses. And then some.

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