When a story begins with Florida and guns, you know it can’t be good. 39-year-old Robert Hendrix would likely agree. His client’s neighbor, 91-year-old Max Horton, was arrested last week after pulling a gun on Hendrix over a dispute about lawn clippings.
Hendrix is a landscaper. Apparently, some grass clippings accidentally blew onto Horton’s vehicle. Hendrix and Horton argued, then Horton grabbed a handgun, pointed it at Hendrix and ordered him on his knees. He also allegedly told Hendrix he would kill him.
When another landscaper, Johnny Barnes, tried to defend Hendrix, Horton fired a round in the direction of Hendrix. Then, the landscapers tackled Horton and took away his gun. They held him down till the police arrived.
Now, let’s visit that “responsible gun owner” argument. Horton, who had minor injuries, had to be transported to a hospital that wasn’t the nearest because he was banned from the nearest hospital in 2013 over – you got it – gun threats.
Florida Hospital was bypassed because Horton had been trespassed warned from Florida Hospital in September, 2013, due to verbal threats he made to staff members, telling them he had a gun in his vehicle and they would be sorry if he went to get it.
Florida gun laws, as you might imagine, are pretty loose. Florida law doesn’t require that police remove guns from domestic violence scenes. They also don’t require that guns are removed when protective orders are issued.
Horton isn’t alone. It’s estimated that about 80 million Americans own guns. More than 1/4 of those are owned by people with anger and impulse issues, much like Horton.
The numbers of angry and impulsive people who own and carry guns, importantly, far exceeds the number of people who have been hospitalized for mental illness. This is a dangerous population, in other words, much larger than the one currently excluded from legal gun ownership and they typically own more than one gun.
Source: Pacific Standard Mag
It’s clear that if we do ever try to put a stop to gun violence in this country, we need to go far beyond just the people with clear mental illnesses to include people with rage and impulse issues. Of course, that would put a serious dent in gun manufacturers’ bottom lines.
As far as Hendrix and Horton, Hendrix, fortunately, is fine. Horton has minor injuries from being tackled.
Featured image via Pixabay.