Portland, Oregon prides itself on its weirdness, but a judge’s recent outburst during a sentencing hearing was odd even for that part of the country. Speaking to convicted murderer Marcell Lee Daniel Jr., Judge Kenneth Walker said he was sick and tired of seeing people lose their lives to gun violence.
“If I could I would take all the guns in America, put them on big barges and go dump them in the ocean,” the judge said, according to The Oregonian. “Nobody would have a gun. Not police, not security, not anybody. We should eliminate all of them. We could save 33,000 people a year if we didn’t have guns in this country.”
Daniel was sentenced to 17 years in prison for killing 24-year-old Andrew Coggins Jr. in 2014. But Judge Walker insisted on addressing not just Daniel’s crime but the issue of guns as a whole.
“Australia after a major shooting rounded up all the guns, and they haven’t had near the death that we do here in this country,” he said. “I just saw last night a statistic that 11,000 people in America are murdered each year and another 20,000 commit suicide with guns.
“They are a scourge of this country and no one should have one as far as I’m concerned,” he continued. “There’s no defense to guns. There’s just absolutely no reason to have them. But it is a right of people in this country to own and possess them, and I will not say anything to affect that right.”
On one hand, you can understand how a person would get frustrated after years of seeing first-hand all the lives lost senselessly to violence, gun-related or otherwise. Sometimes, that frustration is bound to come out in illogical ways. And Walker at least seems to understand that while he despises guns, the American people have the right to own them. That’s further than some liberals get in their thinking.
But wow. “Absolutely no reason to have them,” eh? The mere fact that millions of people DO have them would say otherwise, unless he believes people are buying guns without really knowing why. And if we’re that unconscious as a society, we have bigger problems to worry about.
Also…throwing all guns into the ocean wouldn’t save all gun-violence victims, now would it? No, not unless you believe that guns are the only weapon that can be used to kill. Or maybe we should start chucking all of our knives and cars and baseball bats and poisons into the ocean as well.
For that matter, how many people does the ocean kill every year? We should get rid of that, too.
Makes about as much sense.