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奥兰多屠杀与美国持枪文化
At the crossroads of American gun violence and gun culture

导致49人死亡的奥兰多Pulse夜总会大规模枪击事件堪称美国史上最惨重枪击案。这起枪击案令全世界为之震惊,同时也将美国的枪支管制法再度置于全球聚光灯下。而对于来自枪械受到严格管制,普遍百姓没有持枪权的亚洲国家的民众来说,美国的持枪文化让很多人匪夷所思,困惑不解。

The Orlando mass shooting, which killed 49 people at the Pulse night club, has been marked as the worst mass shooting in US history. It has sent shockwaves across the globe and once again put America’s gun control legislations under global scrutiny. But to people from Asian countries, where guns and weapons are under strict controls and inaccessible to ordinary citizens, American gun culture seems particularly odd and confusing. 


身为移民的我在1990年代初来到加拿大时,初次见识了让我震惊不已的暴力枪杀事件。当时我还是蒙特利尔康科迪亚大学计算机科学系的留学生。那是在1992年8月一个炎热的夏日午后,系里的一名副教授在其终身教授申请遭拒后,在公文包中藏匿了三支手枪及弹药进入学校,到我所在的楼层开始了疯狂性无辜滥杀,当场杀死了四名同事,并导致一名校务人员受伤。

As an immigrant, gun violence was new and shocking to me when I came to Canada in the early 1990’s. I witnessed my first dramatic gun shooting back when I was a visa student at the computer science department of Concordia University in Montreal. On a hot summer afternoon in Aug. 1992, an associate professor at the department who was denied tenure carried three guns and ammunition in his briefcase and went on a shooting rampage on my floor, killing four of his colleagues and wounding a staff member. 

这些被害教授的妻子在获知噩耗后,震痛之情难以言表。谁又能想到在加拿大这样一个和平安宁的国度,身为教授的丈夫会在一个美丽的午后一去不复返,命丧黄泉呢?

The emotional responses from the wives of the slain professors when the news broke to them were beyond expression – who could possibly expect that their husband would not make home from work on a beautiful afternoon in such a great and peaceful country, Canada? 


时至今日,这起恐怖的枪杀案仍是我们许多同学挥之不去的梦魇。但继这起枪杀事件后发起的枪支管制请愿活动也令我们至今记忆犹新。当时被杀害教授的大幅肖像照被挂校园大楼的一层,枪支管制倡导者们在发表慷慨激昂的演说的同时,寻求每个路过者在请愿书上签名。

The horrific incident has still haunted many of us students till today, but the petition for gun control in the aftermath of the shooting also conjured up our vivid memories. Large portraits dedicated to the slain professors were posted up on the ground floor of the building, as gun control advocators made their emotional pleas and sought signatures on petition letters from every passerby. 


倡导者们通过扩音器呼喊的口号至今仍在我耳边回响:“我们必须控制暴力!控制枪支势在必行!”对掠夺无辜生命的滥杀行为难道不该令行禁止!被残忍杀戮行为和持枪暴力深深震惊的我也毫不犹豫地在请愿书上签了名。

“We must reduce violence! We must limit the access of fire arms!” the advocates shouted through the megaphones that has since constantly rang in my ears. Shouldn’t we stop the monsters from taking away innocent lives immediately? Absolutely! I thought. Shocked by the brutal killing and the gun violence, I signed the letter instantly without any hesitation. 


随着在北美生活时间不断增长,美国的枪杀暴力事件逐渐地变得屡见不鲜。美国的大规模枪杀事件不断发生,且杀伤率也一浪高过一浪。虽然每起枪击事件都会令我回想起康科迪亚枪杀案,但暴力枪杀也不再会让我如此震惊,而我对美国的持枪文化的认同也日益加深。

But over the years living in North America, I’ve had more exposure to gun violence in the US, as incidents of mass killings occurred one after another, and the scale of the catastrophes grew seemingly larger. But while each incident brought back memories on the Concordia shooting, it made me increasingly desensitized to gun violence.


在美国,尤其是美国南方各州有着根深蒂固的持枪文化。我近期曾造访了持枪率极高的美国乔治亚州的亚特兰大市,而我遇到的大部分持枪者都非常友好、温文尔雅且谦和有礼,和我最初所想象的杀人恶魔的形象形成鲜明对比。

The US, especially the Southern States, has deep roots in gun culture. I recently travelled to Atlanta, Georgia, where gun ownership ranks amongst the highest in the US. Some of the nicest, most amicable and hospitable people I have ever met were all gun owners, a far cry from the murderous monsters I initially believed. 


虽然来自枪械管控的国家中的很多人都将枪支视为杀人武器,但对于美国人来说枪支实际上只是自卫工具。在康科迪亚大学的枪支管制请愿书上签名20年后,我居然在美国乔治亚州亚特兰大的一家射击场,手持段枪向3米开外的标靶瞄准射击。

While guns are murderous weapons to most people from arm-restricted countries, they are in fact self-protection tools for Americans. Nearly two decades after I signed the gun control petition at Concordia, I even found myself standing in a shooting range in Atlanta Georgia carrying a pistol aiming at a target 3 meters away. 


砰!砰!砰!在我连发数枪后,教练对我的射击成绩给予了表扬,并鼓励我进一步训练。他对我说,“女性学习射击对自我保护尤为重要!”

Bang, bang, bang! After I blasted several shots, the instructor, after reviewing my shooting results, gave a positive appraisal and encouraged me to come back again. “It is particularly important for women to learn gun shooting to protect themselves!” he said.


乔治亚州射击后不久,美国又发生了更多大规模枪击事件,其中包括2015年的San Benardino枪击事件和前不久才发生的Orlando大屠杀。虽然接连发生的暴力枪杀事件加剧了我对美国公众安全的担忧,但在持枪文化根深蒂固的今天,我对美国议会通过任何剥夺公民持枪权之立法的可能性产生深度置疑。

Since then, more mass shootings have taken place – including San Benardino in 2015 and now the Orlando massacre.  While widespread gun violence has heightened my concerns over citizens’ safety, good gun culture has also led to my growing skepticism over passing any laws to remove Americans’ right to own firearms. 
 
 

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