After the devastating event at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado, where 15 children were gunned down by two class mates, President Clinton made a statement.

He said, “We need to teach our children not to respond to situations with violence, that they should learn to live peacefully together.” This came on the heels of increased NATO bombing in Yugoslavia where more innocent citizens have been killed by these bombings than have been killed by the Serbs.

So what is the lesson here? Big guns and little guns can both kill when given to people who have rejected other means of solving their problems or conflicts. The two boys who murdered their classmates had no respect for human life and felt empowered to show this disdain by executing classmates because they were different, believed in something, or were just in the wrong place at the wrong time. The NATO forces, including the U.S. have stated that civilian casualties are to be expected in any war, that Serbians deserve to die, and they have a moral right to kill because these people are different than the ones they support.

To quote an old saying, “the apple falls not far from the tree.”

The First Maryland Rifles at Fredericksburg and the Virginia rifles were comprised of backwoods boys who could hit targets the size of a silver dollar at thirty yards. They could hike an average of 29 miles a day, every day, and not lose one man to exhaustion. But for soldiers in the newly formed militia, they were also undisciplined.

General Washington issued an order to these farm boys which forbade profanity and drunkenness. And he required that those not involved in battle to attend services.

When he arrived in Cambridge to address this rag-tag group, Washington noted that it was more like a jamboree than a military establishment. So here we have hundreds of ill-disciplined, hard-drinking, profane men all carrying loaded guns. Isn’t it odd that the founding fathers didn’t fear their owning or bearing arms, in fact they counted on it for the revolution. And they protected that right in the constitution.

It is too bad our current political leaders don’t trust us to own guns. It was that freedom to bear arms, that won us this freedom to talk about it. This is Nina May and the Renaissance Women, honoring the veterans of all battles for freedom and independence.

In the political rush to pass even more gun legislation, in the aftermath of the tragic school shootings, one brilliant idea is to raise the age of gun ownership to 21.

Let’s forget the fact that none of the gun-toting kids in the past year actually owned them. But what does that mean for the young 18 year-olds who may be a part of the ground forces sent to Yugoslavia? Will we disarm them? Or is it OK to tell them they can own a gun and even kill an enemy that has never harmed them, invaded their country, or threatened their loved ones?

It’s the blonde defense. Oh, that’s different silly, they are trained to use guns and kill. Well, if it’s OK to train our 18 year-old kids to use a weapon effectively enough to kill strangers half-way around the world.

Why don’t we train their peers to use a weapon effectively to defend themselves from some terrorists gang that might blast into their school? How can you argue one minute to disarm kids while arguing the next, to arm them to fight in someone else’s war in another country?

A little consistency goes a long way toward maintaining a sane society.