20 CENTS

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20 cents.  That’s the cost of a single 9mm bullet if bought in bulk.  Is this truly the cost of a life today?  On Boxing Day (December 26th) a single bullet ended the life of Jane Crebra, 15, on Yonge Street in downtown Toronto.
 
Creba and her sister were out shopping for bargains when rival gangmembers opened fire on the crowded street.  Shots flew and, when the smoke cleared, young Jane was dead and six others were wounded.
 
What posesses people to put such a low cost on something as precious as a human life?  Do we blame the economy, our proximity to the US where handguns are easily obtained or society in general?  It’s easy to point at the number of socially disadvantaged single parent homes and prevelance of violence on TV, in films and in video games but somewhere along the way it appears that an entire generation lost the most basic of human values.  The value of life.
 
Everyone from church and youth leaders to politicians is crying that we have to do something to stem the worsening gun violence on our streets.  Do what?  Ban handguns, say some.  If someone wants a handgun, they’ll get one.  Tighten the laws?  I don’t think that someone who is willing to spend 20 cents to kill someone really cares all that much about themselves.  Certainly the courts could do a better job by applying the sentences we already have on the books but, again, I really don’t think that will scare some of these people off.  The problem is – they just don’t care.  How do we change that? 
 
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