Oscar Pistorius: Textbook Paranoid Gun Owner?

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The case against Oscar Pistorius continued today as his defense attorney tried his best to throw doubt on the professionalism of law enforcement and validity of the evidence against his client.

Barry Roux's cross-examination of police photographer Barend Van Staden went on for much of Tuesday. During the cross-examination, Roux tried to insist that the items photographed had been tampered with or moved around, making the re-construction of the murder scene questionable.

This move to undermine the evidence is the only realistic counter-attack available to Roux whose client Pistorius has been held up as the standard of the textbook paranoid gun owner by the prosecution.

It is an image that could actually validate Pistorius's version of events and convince Judge Thokozile Masipa that the Olympic athlete genuinely believed his life to be in danger. It could also help him avoid a lengthy prison term.

Pistorius's behavior could also be taken as a sign that certain individuals should simply not be gun owners.

Early testimony from two men who knew Pistorius recalled that after being handed a weapon, he irresponsibly fired it in public.

It remains puzzling why Pistorius behaved in such a way.

He was instructed that the weapon was loaded. Why would a person who is supposed to know much about guns take the risk of firing it? Accidents do happen, but then it was not the only incident.

Ex-girlfriend Samantha Taylor testified that Pistorius had fired a bullet into the sunroof of the car he was driving after being pulled over by police. What if the bullet had ricocheted and hit someone in the car?

Finally, some testimony referred to his inexplicable obsession with being followed or of someone getting into his home to harm him. He was even planning to stockpile weapons prior to the shooting of Reeva Steenkamp.

Looking at Pistorius's behavior leading up to the death of his girlfriend, whether or not it was intentional, it is hard to look at his behavior as a gun owner as remotely ethical. It seems that something like this, based on his behavior, may have been sadly inevitable.

Perhaps the biggest lesson to be taken from the Pistorius trial is that South Africa should work harder on gun control laws. For instance, those seeking a permit should submit to a mental examination prior to being granted the ability to own guns.

Do you think the Oscar Pistorius case is a sign that stricter gun laws are needed in South Africa? Comment below!

Image via YouTube

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