This past week I saw a movie that was new to me, “Babel” starring Brad Pitt. I didn’t know a thing about this movie going into it so really I had no pre-conceived notions. Overall, I enjoyed the movie but I found myself rather disconnected from it due to the subtitles. I had to keep myself entirely engaged or I would lose the plot and would not be able to connect with the story line. And then I realized something, this sense of disconnectedness was a major part of the story. I am not sure if the directors intended this but for me that made this movie that much more enjoyable.
For those who have not seen it, I will give you a quick summary. The movie starts off with a man, Hassan, selling a gun to a friend to hunt buck. The man buys the gun and allows his kids to take possession of it in order to hunt. The kids are very young and because of this small act, a tourist (an American) ends up being shot. The movie follows the paths of the three families that are involved in this story and how although they are so disconnected they are actually very connected.
This however leads me to a big question, should small children be able to use guns. I for one am a huge believer in the right to bear arms and I believe all families should be able to protect themselves. But, I think this movie shows that children cannot be trusted with guns. They do not quite understand the severity of their actions just yet and they do not understand the value of a human life. This movie showed me how disconnected these children felt from their actions even though their actions deeply affected more than just their own lives.
Many people argue that with the right discipline and training a child can use a gun supervised for purposes such as hunting. I don’t believe this should be allowed. A child does not understand what it means to take a life, even an animal life. Until they can feel those types of connections and understand what their actions truly mean I do not think they should have that type of power.
I think the disconnectedness the viewer feels when watching this movie is similar to the disconnectedness the children felt when they shot the van than wounded the tourist. After watching this I can say with certainty that I do not believe children should have access to guns in any way. Children need to learn compassion and the value of a life before they have the ability to take a life.
So bloggers, even if you have not seen the movie, do you feel children should have the ability to use a gun?