So… I don’t really want to talk about it, but part of me feels like I need to. Ian Long was an honorably discharged Marine Corps Veteran. Ian was also responsible for the murder of 12 individuals at a bar I used to frequent in Thousand Oaks back when I was a Marine. Ian was 28 years old. He and I served during the same time frame, potentially brushing shoulders in Hawaii, even though I never met him.
This is absolutely disgusting to me. I want to say that first and foremost. If he was not dead, I would gladly line up on the firing line to put him down for what he did. What he did is NOT what Marines do. He betrayed his country, his brotherhood, his family, and most of all the families of those poor people who were in that bar.
All of that being said. When is enough going to be enough? Is anyone paying attention yet? This doesn’t have shit to do with gun control. This has to do with, for the past decade plus, our Veteran community screaming out that they are not alright!
Some of us got lucky, and didn’t see as much of that nightmare hellhole face to face. Some of us did not get so lucky. Meanwhile, the American public only cares about what size magazine he used and whether or not it was an AR-15… It was Glock 45 by the way, a handgun.
The fact remains that while this is without question an act of domestic terrorism, this is also one more Veteran who could have been saved. One more Veteran who never asked for help because we are trained or it is instilled upon us, to NOT need it. One more Veteran who, because of his horrific actions, places Veteran issues further on the back burner than they have ever been.
How many more suicides, murders, arrests, incarcerations, and tragedies does there need to be before someone, ANYONE, in a position of power does something about the Veteran epidemic in this country? I am sick to death of being right when I say that my Veteran generation is the “Second Generation of Viet Nam.”
Again, I am in NO WAY justifying what Ian Long has done. He committed the ultimate betrayal of the oath he swore alongside his brothers and sisters. He is vile scum, and deserves whatever hell he was sent to. But this could have been prevented, and it is sad that people think that a gun law, the NRA, or the president was the problem here.
Just one Vet’s opinion.