While Americans are still simultaneously lauding and lamenting the Bin Laden assassination, here in the U.S., the war continues on its steady path across many fronts. There are gun battles raging as I type down in the basement lair of many a household. Call of Duty the name of the game. When kids are bored with that, they can move on to Zombie and kill as many of them as they can within a few minutes. I was attacked the other day by a very realistic gun app - just hold up the iTouch and pull the trigger -- you can test out every sort of firearm in existence, from the blasts of a silencer to a surface to air missile launcher. Granted, the net effect isn't the same.
Kids graduate from Nerf Guns to BB guns, spending hours improving their shot by playing video shoot 'em ups each morning before school. Local police get involved when bathroom graffiti takes a dangerous turn and someone scrawls BEWARE of BOMBS on the bathroom walls. And this in an affluent suburb, where kids born with platinum spoons in their mouths and golf clubs in their hands are in constant need of new and exciting diversions.
In areas nearby, I'm warned not to go to the spectacular movie house - one of the top-grossing places in all the USA - on a Friday or Saturday night. Security is deployed to watch for the car break-ins and gang warfare that's not taking place on the screen. Although I do find it a bit amusing to think that while you're watching The Hulk thoroughly demolish his umpteenth city, or a gun battle raging on the screen, you may be treated to your own version of Grand Theft Auto in 4-D -- with gangsters running through the cinema -- the police chasing close behind.
In Europe, a place where I suspect most people feel infinitely safer (I know I do), despite having 6 locks on our doors, and supporting a huge market of anti-auto theft devices, knife fights are currently all the rage. Hopefully, we won't graduate to marksmenship and the gun totin' ways of the land -- although Germany and even Sweden has already seen a few school shooting sprees.
Either way, it certainly makes for one import I wouldn't like to see brought in from the Wild Wild West.