Can We Allow Starter Pistols?

We inhabit a world in which security and safety are constantly on the minds of people. A six year old child brings her lunch box to school which contains a plastic knife to be used for spreading peanut butter and immediately finds herself in the principal’s office charged with endangering the lives of fellow students with her plastic knife as well as brining in peanut butter which can cause another child to become sick. In Toronto schools the latest furor is over whether to allow the “starter pistol” which is used to begin track meets to remain in use. After all, the man who fires the starter pistol might point it at the crowd and begin a massacre of the entire area. In our quest for security, we focus on minor issues rather than focus on what really constitutes security and safety.

No one really worries about children without medical care, no one worries about unemployed mothers and fathers, no one worries about the elderly who lack sufficient income to live out the remaining years in dignity. Ah, but the starter pistol, that is the real concern of security. When will humans grow up and focus on what really matters in life?