Last week a toddler in Albuquerque (USA) searched an iPod in his moms bag, found a loaded gun and shot his father in the butt and his highly pregnant mother in the arm. Both parents were lucky, because one month ago a 2-year old boy in Idaho (USA) also found a loaded gun in his mothers bag and his shot was fatal: he killed his mom. One month earlier a 3-year old boy in Oklahoma (USA) found a semi-automatic gun underneath the couch and shot his mother in the head; she got killed while she was changing the diaper of his 1-year old sister. Two weeks ago a 2-year old boy in Florida (again USA) found a loaded gun in the car's glovebox, while his parents were both outside the car, carrying boxes. He placed the gun on his own chest and killed himself.
"Enough!" you think and you're so right. We should immediately do all we can to stop these terrible killings by toddlers, especially since I'm not talking about a unique month in the USA. Childhood gun and shooting accidents are not rare in the USA. They are one of the top ten leading causes of accidental death for all age groups outside of newborns and infants. 2010 counted 600 unintentional firearm deaths caused by children, taking the lives of 114 children, and additionally there were 3,060 nonfatal shooting accidents, which resulted in 1,375 children needing to be hospitalized for their injuries. Each year brings more or less the same shocking numbers, but still 85% of the parents don't store their guns on a safely, unloaded and locked away. These facts should as soon as possible lead to non-stop nationwide campaigns against the possession of guns or at least campaigns to make all the parents store their guns on a safe way. Politicians and media should discuss these unneeded killings, but they're not, they are obsessed with something else: Muslim extremists.
Due to attacks by Islamist terrorists in New York, London, Madrid, Boston and lately Paris, fear for 'the Muslims' is gradually growing in USA and Europe. The disgusting videos of beheaded journalists by the Islamic State (IS) are fueling that fear and since we know that some of these IS-guys have western passports and return to their countries with plans for new attacks, many people in the west got terrified. But did you know that after '9/11' (New York, 2001) out of 190,000 murders in the USA only 37 were caused by Muslim extremists? Did you know that not even two percent of all the kills due to terrorist attacks in Europe were related to Muslim radicals? More people died due to attacks by self-acclaimed Christian radicals, such as Breivik in Norway. By far most people were killed by terrorist attacks by political extremists, separatists or drugs mafia. Did you know that most weapons in the hands of the IS come from the USA, that helped to arm the incompetent Iraqi army with weapons worth over 20 billion dollars? And yes, Muslim extremists in the last 15 years - in the USA and Europe together - did not even kill as many people as toddlers did in the USA during the last year.
Instead of staying calm and doing all we can to prevent weapons to fall in the wrong hands and to prevent young Muslims in the West to get radicalized, we spread fear, exaggerate the risks and come to wrong priorities. Allover the western hemisphere budgets for military, police, security and intelligence expenditures are drastically raised with billions of Euros. It's money that should go to education, jobs and other positive development. After the Cold War the military industry was desperately in need for a new enemy. Those companies exploit our fear and media are often helping them, as Fox News did with its host Eric Bolling, who claimed directly after Paris: "The best Americans can do is arm themselves." Toddlers proof this to be complete bullshit, but millions of people are nevertheless putting weapons above wisdom.
For sure the Islamists are laughing out loudly when they see the tremendous destabilizing effect of their attacks. Like the small David killed the strong Goliath with a precise stone-throw, Islamists think they are just one stone-throw away from making the western values, economies and public tremble, shake and fall apart. Why don't we realize that we're exactly giving them what they aim for? We should actually have the guts to laugh back loudly to this numerically extremely small group of Islamic extremists. Show them we're not afraid. Show them that we're wise. Show them that we can laugh much louder! Let's start by telling them they're less scary then toddlers. That will surely piss them off! Laughter would be the best homage to the makers of Charlie Hebdo too. Make laugh, not war.