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纽顿枪杀案,罪恶超乎想象


来源:economist    作者:economist   时间:2012-12-25 11:19   点击: 次  


 
The Newtown killing
纽顿枪杀案

Evil beyond imagining
罪恶超乎想象

If even the slaughter of 20 small children cannot end America’s infatuation with guns, nothing will
如果连20名儿童惨遭屠杀都无法打消美国对枪支的迷恋,她已无可救药
 

CHARLOTTE. Daniel. Olivia. Josephine. Ana. Dylan. Madeleine. Catherine. Chase. Jesse. James. Grace. Emilie. Jack. Noah. Caroline. Jessica. Benjamin. Avielle. Allison. In an especially emotional moment during a prayer vigil, Barack Obama read out the first names of the 20 children killed during the December 14th school shooting in Sandy Hook, Connecticut. The children were all six or seven years old. Six adults at the school were also killed, including the principal, who died trying to save her charges.

夏洛特、丹尼尔、奥利维亚、约瑟芬、安娜、迪伦、玛德琳、凯瑟琳、蔡斯、杰西、詹姆斯、格雷丝、埃米莉、杰克、诺亚、卡罗琳、杰西卡、本杰明、阿维尔勒、阿利森……在守夜祈祷中这个特别令人心碎的时刻里,奥巴马逐个念出了在康州桑迪胡克校园枪击案中被杀的20名儿童的名字。他们都只有六、七岁。学校里还有六名成年人被杀,包括试图阻止凶手的校长。

The carnage has rocked the community of Sandy Hook, part of the town of Newtown. Makeshift memorials made of candles, flowers and fluffy toys have sprung up all over the hilly New England village. Townspeople and visitors make pilgrimages to the school. They share tales of heroic teachers and brave children. One little boy offered to lead the evacuation as “I know karate.” Churches are open round the clock. Six-year-old Olivia Engel was supposed to be an angel in a nativity scene. Now, said Monsignor Bob Weiss, she is an angel in heaven.

大屠杀震惊了位于纽顿镇的桑迪胡克社区。蜡烛、鲜花和毛绒玩具临时搭建的纪念碑遍布整个新英格兰山村。市民和访客纷纷到学校慰问。他们在传诵英雄教师和勇敢学童的故事。如案发时一个小男孩提议由他带领大家疏散,他说:“我学过空手道。” 教堂全天开放,主教鲍勃•维斯说:六岁的奥利维亚•恩格尔原计划在耶稣诞生的演出中扮演天使,现在,她成了天堂上的一名天使。

The shooting has shocked a country long accustomed to gun violence. There have been a dozen mass-shootings this year. Over the summer murderous gun rampages occurred at a Sikh temple in Wisconsin and at a cinema in Colorado. Mr Obama’s visit to Sandy Hook was the fourth time he has been to a community devastated in this way. Fighting tears, an unusually emotional Mr Obama said in an address to the nation that action is needed, “regardless of the politics”.

枪击案震惊了全国,即便人们对枪支暴力早已习以为常。今年以来已经发生了十几起大规模凶杀案。夏天里威斯康星州的一个锡克教寺庙,以及科罗拉多州一家影院,都发生了残酷的枪杀案件。奥巴马此次来桑迪胡克已经是他第四次到访遭受类似打击的社区。面对全国发表讲话时,奥巴马强忍泪水,异常激动地呼吁“抛开政治分歧”、采取必要行动。

Other gun-related incidents, such as the one in 2011 which left Gabrielle Giffords, an Arizona congresswoman, severely injured and killed six others, did nothing to push politicians to fight for gun control. But this time does seem different. Since the shooting more than 180,000 Americans have petitioned the White House to introduce gun-control legislation. Senators Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Mark Warner of Virginia, both given A ratings the National Rifle Association, are now calling for gun control. But the reformers have a huge task ahead of them. According to one survey, roughly a third of all American households own firearms. Three-quarters of those own more than one. Around 300m guns are in circulation, about one for every person in the country.

以往的枪击事件,如2011年亚利桑那州国会议员加布里埃尔•吉福兹遇刺重伤、另有六人死亡的事件,并未推动政客去争取枪支管制。但是,这一次似乎有所不同。自枪击案发生以来已有超过18万美国人请求白宫就枪支管制立法。曾被全国步枪协会(NRA)评为A级的西弗吉尼亚州马克•沃纳和弗吉尼亚州乔•曼钦两位参议员,现也转而呼吁对枪支进行管制。然而,摆在改革者面前的是一项巨大的任务。一项调查显示,大约三分之一的美国家庭拥有枪支,其中四分之三家庭拥有不止一支。大约有3亿支枪在市面上流通,差不多全国每人一支。

Between 1994 and 2004 the federal assault-weapons ban outlawed certain weapons. Since its expiry most of the debate about new gun-control legislation has not focused on banning guns, but about allowing them in more places—in national parks, on trains, in churches and at colleges. Still, Dianne Feinstein, a Democratic senator from California, plans speedily to reintroduce an updated federal ban on these weapons. And Mr Obama’s spokesman has indicated that he will support it.

“联邦攻击性武器禁令” 在1994到2004年间取缔了一些武器。该禁令失效之后,关于新法案的立法辩论焦点不再是取缔枪支,而是应不应该允许把枪支带到更多的地方,包括国家公园里、火车上、教堂和大学内。来自加州的民主党参议员黛安娜•范斯坦,迅速决定推动新版武器禁令出台。奥巴马的发言人已经表示总统将支持这一计划。

Any serious new gun-control laws are likely to face opposition from the NRA. The lobby group has bragged that it defeated 19 of the 24 congressmen it targeted in 1994, shortly after the assault ban went into effect. The NRA kept a low profile this week, though it promised a statement on December 21st which would make “meaningful contributions” towards gun safety. Others have acted already: California’s legislature moved to require a licence for anyone buying ammunition, and Cerberus Capital, a private-equity group, said it will sell its stake in the firm that made the semi-automatic rifle used in Sandy Hook.

任何严厉的新禁枪法都可能面临NRA的反对。这个游说团体曾吹嘘说,1994年“联邦攻击性武器禁令”生效后不久,它就搞掉了支持该禁令的24名国会议员中的19名。本周NRA保持低调,但承诺会在12月21日发表一份声明,将对枪支安全做出“有意义的贡献” 。其他组织已在行动:加利福尼亚州立法机构打算要求任何购买弹药的人都必须要有许可证;塞伯罗斯资本(一家私营股权投资集团)表示,将出售桑迪胡克枪杀案中所用半自动步枪的生产厂家的股份。

Michael Bloomberg, New York’s anti-gun mayor, this week urged Mr Obama to introduce legislation. If the president does nothing, Mr Bloomberg notes that some 48,000 Americans will be murdered by guns during his second term—several times more Americans than died on September 11th 2001, in Afghanistan and Iraq combined. Tightening existing laws would be a start. The 1994 Brady bill, named after Ronald Reagan’s press spokesman who was critically injured in an assassination attempt, brought in federal background checks for gun purchases. The refusal rate is very low, just 0.6% of the 157m checks processed. Besides, 40% of firearms purchases are not from licensed gun-dealers or are at gun shows, and do not require even this background check. That is one change that may well now be made.

本周纽约市反枪市长迈克尔•布隆伯格敦促奥巴马进行立法。布隆伯格指出,如果总统什么都不做,将有约48,000名美国人将他的第二个任期内被枪杀,比死于“911事件”及阿富汗、伊拉克军事行动的美国人的总数多出好多倍。作为开始,可收紧现行的法律。1994年的布雷迪法案要求购买枪支的人事先要通过联邦背景调查(这部法案以罗纳德•里根的新闻发言人的名字命名,他在一次刺杀中受伤严重)。背景调查被否掉的比例非常低,在1.57亿次已完成的调查中只有0.6%未获通过。此外,枪械销量中的40%不是从有执照的经销商购买的,也不是枪展会上购买的,甚至不需要通过这种背景检查。这个问题最好立即纠正。

Marco Rubio, a Republican senator from Florida, has called for a study on how to keep guns out of the hands of the mentally ill. This distracts from the main issue of gun control, but it is true that gunmen in recent mass-shootings have indeed been mentally ill. A federal law is already on the books to prevent dangerous mentally-ill people from buying guns. Not all such people are included in national background-check databases, however. The Virginia Tech shooter, who killed 32 people, had recorded problems of that sort which his state did not send to the federal database.

来自佛罗里达州的共和党参议员马可•卢比奥呼吁进行研究,避免枪支落入心理障碍人士之手。这一呼声分散了对枪支管制主要问题的关注。但是最近几次的大规模枪击事件中的枪手确实都有心理问题。已经有一部联邦法律在阻止危险的心理障碍人士购买枪支。但是并非所有的问题人士都已纳入国家背景检查数据库。比如弗吉尼亚理工大学一案中杀害了32人的的枪手,案发前有记录说明他有精神方面的问题,但相关信息并没有存入联邦数据库。

Adam Lanza, the 20-year old gunman at Sandy Hook, did not submit himself to a background check. His mother legally bought and owned the Bushmaster and the two other guns that he carried. She was his first victim. He shot her in the face numerous times and took her weapons before he went to the school.

桑迪胡克枪杀案中的20岁枪手亚当•兰扎从未进行过背景检查。案发时他携带的“大毒蛇”及另外两支枪,是他母亲合法购买和拥有的。她是他枪下的第一个受害者。他朝她的脸部开了数枪,之后带上她的枪去了学校。

Mr Obama has said he will act within weeks. He should follow the example of America’s friends. In 1996 a massacre in a Scottish school in Dunblane killed 16 children and one teacher. The next year the private ownership of most handguns was banned in Britain. Also that year John Howard, Australia’s conservative prime minister, ushered in a semi-automatic-weapon ban a fortnight after 35 were killed in a gun massacre in Tasmania. If similar laws had been in effect in Sandy Hook, some of those lost might have survived. Instead, this Christmas, parents are going to funerals for six- and seven-year-olds.

奥巴马表示将在几周内采取行动。他应该向美国的友邦学习。1996年,苏格兰邓布兰学校发生大屠杀,16名儿童和一名老师遇害。次年英国禁止私人持有大部分型号的手枪。同年澳大利亚有35人在塔斯马尼亚的枪杀案中被害,仅两周之后,保守党首相约翰•霍华德就促成了一项半自动武器禁令的通过。如果类似的法律已在桑迪胡克生效,一些遇害者也许能幸免于难。可惜没有,导致今年圣诞节这些父母得给他们六七岁的孩子举行葬礼。


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