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In current times, we face many different threats to our way of life, as well as how we operate globally. Not only on a physical level either, as with advancements in technology we've become at risk to a whole catalouge of new weapons. The increasing risk of Artificial intelligence (AI) being weaponized, the prospect of nuclear war and many others. But it seems that we still have a lot to acomplish with our 'traditional' issues - such as the ongoing firearms issues that we continuously see in the United States of America.
There’s Parkland, Virginia Tech, Rancho Tehama Reserve, Marshall County, the list goes on..
The above names are just some of the many places in the United States of America that have been plagued by the events that took place there. All of which involving firearms in a country that holds its right to bear arms over the need to impeach a President who has coluded, assaulted, bribed and lied his way into power.
In this article I hope to show some insight into the mind of a British Citizen looking on to a gun-torn America in 2018 and the surrounding issues that regularly over shadow and silence the voices of change. From near world catastrophe with North Korea, to the ongoing cyber threats from Russia, there’s a lot to see, and a lot to miss.
Gun Culture in America - Whats happening?
When you think of America, a few things may spring to mind:
• The Armed Forces
• Red Cups
Just to name a few...
But let’s be honest here...
Guns are a massive part of American culture, and if you’ve ever been there and stepped foot in Walmart then you’ll know. They ain’t that hard to find. Now, I’m not saying that every American citizen is a gun banging psychopath who’s at risk of shooting up a public place, I’m just simply saying, why have them? Are they really necessary?
In a county with a proven problem of gun violence, why throw fuel onto an already blazing fire by making these weapons not only legal to purchase, but advertising the sale of these weapons in places such as the greatly "loved" supermarket, Walmart. In doing so, it seems that this is putting a population at risk of extreme force and violence. Would it not make more sense to remove the method of force in the streets, rather than to try and impose tougher conditions to obtain these weapons?
The issue that I have as a Scottish citizen, is that over here (across the pond as they say), we experienced the tragic events in Dunblane where we saw Thomas Hamilton shoot and kill 16 children and one teacher before turning the gun on himself in March of 1996. Now after such a serious tragedy, we banned the use of guns with the exception of farmers and for sporting matters e.g. hunting. Even with these exceptions however, an official license must be applied for and obtained before a purchase can be made of such a powerful instrument. And since this, we have seen a dramatic change in social circumstances. This includes only one mass shooting since the Dunblane tragedy when, in 2010, Derrick Bird, killed 12 people and injured 11 others before killing himself in Cumbria, England.
I personally feel that this alone proves that removing the method of force effectively manages the problem, even if it doesn’t completely solve it.
Hey, we live in a world where you can speak to someone and see them while they’re across the other side of the world as long as they have the treasured WiFi code. It’s impossible to believe that we can manage and control the outcome of every situation. But what we can do, is fix what our past generations got wrong, don’t be afraid to upgrade and always be yourself. Gun laws in America are outdated and put a whole population at increased risk of violence and harm. It’s tragic in this day and age, I know. However, if they can’t see the issue then we’ll never get anywhere.
Let’s hope they work it out soon, but with Trump in charge, that is not looking likely...
UK, USA, France vs Russia and Syria - WW3
Now this situation right here, is a mess. Let’s not pretend, let’s not act like we know, let’s admit this is all speculation.
Now to bring everyone up to speed, in simple terms, there was a chemical attack in Syria recently and it lead to an extreme loss of life and many injuries. The USA accused the Syrian government of the attack and things really escalated from there...
Now Russia, are Syria’s allies and believe that it was actually a staged attack by the USA with the intention to frame Syria as an excuse to attack and fire missiles. The UK then, as always, fought a battle that was not our own and joined America and France in firing missiles at Syria. This not only added to the already growing tensions in Syria, but also put the world on edge, in fear of potential destruction with the war of words that followed.
I however, find it extremely coincidental that President Trump would create such a massive global event just days after his lawyer was searched and the scandal with Stormy Daniels—yes the porn star—was revealed. Now I mean come on, that’s the president...associated with a porn star. No more really has to be said. I think it’s also important to mention that the Parkland shooting victims movement was really gaining momentum before this event snatched the media and headlines attention. Once again, school shooting and gun control is out shadowed by another war for a speculative cause.
The President has been trying to shake many cases of woman claiming they’ve had affairs, were assaulted and even abused and well.. the list really does go on. I for one, just cannot understand why Trump has been allowed to continue this far in controlling America. This comes as a shock in a time where we see more than ever that Women are having they’re say and achieving brand new heights, yet we still have a sexist and frankly morally challenged President in charge of such a powerful country.
Wow, 2019 is gunna be a blast....
North Korea - Nuclear Tensions
Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock for the last 10 years, then you’ll most likely be fully aware of North Korea’s nuclear ambitions. Not only have they ignored word wide advice and sanctions, but they have actively arranged missile tests causing for further provocation.
There is simply no way that in 2018, the West and surrounding communities can accept a nuclear capable North Korea. The growing tensions have been headline hogging for a while now and it always gets me thinking, what are they trying to cover up now?
Call me paranoid but I don’t find it impossible to assume that whenever Mr Trump has conflict with other countries and these leaders respond with such actions of disregard that possibly, maybe, they’re taking our eyes off the ball.
Of course though, North Korea would like nothing more than to be accepted on a global stage where it could thrive economically as a true power of the world. The "Supreme Leader" must be aware that nuclear weapons, if fired, will cause a worldwide catastrophe with little to no survivors. Gone would be the life that we know. Due to this, I feel that North Korea only wish to use Nuclear weapons as a bargaining tool to the West, to show them as a force to be reckoned with and to, if needed, prevent the chance of attack themselves.
I can’t be sure and nor can anyone else unless you’re the President or Supreme Leader, but if one things for sure, it’s that both of these leaders know how to gain word wide media cover and push the others buttons...
Who knows what’s actually going on?
Russia - Corruption & New Age Weapons
Russia have for years now been a big player in the world. Under the rule of the infamous Vladimir Putin, they have recently come into worldwide controversy involving the poisoning of an ex-spy who gave intelligence to UK forces and his daughter in Sailsbury, England.
Following this incident, the PM Theresa May proceeded to blame Russia of these diabolical acts and insisted upon an explanation, even giving them a deadline to respond. Russia of course, responded by denying the claims and accusing the UK and the USA of framing them of the poisoning. This is an excuse we have seen before but this could mean many things.
With Russia being a country that is run by a leader who openly admits that Russia is a place where corruption thrives, you really do struggle to gain a full and accurate picture of what’s going on from this side.
Needless to say though, things have been coming to a boiling point for a while now and if we’re not careful, we could face extreme consequences. Such consequences have been warned already by Russia following the accusations of the poisoning and the recent missile attacks in Syria. However, it's almost impossible to know what Mr. Putin wishes to imply by this.
With Russia being such a massive force—especially on the web—where they've already proven to be massively influential in serious events such as the US elections that saw Facebook being used as a tool for spreading "fake news" in order to swing the election. We've also heard that Russia is to test a bomb that is capable of destroying the UK...twice over...which really is a scary prospect that’s hard to come to terms with.
It's hard to know what to take at face value in a time where fake news is on the rise and our leaders are becoming involved in a "War of Words" is about as common as Mr. Trump making a fool of himself.
Okay, so enough doom and gloom for one day.
You could very easily drive yourself mad with fear through reading the wrong articles that may only be lightly seasoned with the truth. This is why I like to include this final section where I can end on a real note.
So let's get real...
No country can afford a nuclear war, simple as that. One missile fired would lead to extreme retaliation and that alone would be enough to wipe out entire continents with the power that our weapons harness in modern day. The real fear is from new age weapons like Artificial Intelligence and hacking where countries can attack each other and cause the effects of a war or famine without even leaving an office chair that is safely secure in their own country, and out of harms way.
So maybe it's time we stop believing the constant stories of the world ending and the next World War and start thinking about more realistic threats and events that really aren't that far away from becoming reality. Although, with the current governments that we have in place, it seems unlikely that we'll know about these risks until it is too late..
At least we have the internet to speculate though, where minds can speak freely and the truth can come out, but it's certainly becoming harder to identify the truth as the days go by.