This is my attempt to clarify some things about this part of the story:
I pretty much hate when comic authors stop and put in a commentary like this in the middle, but I’m doing it anyway because this point seems to provoke a lot of questions and comments (as it was intended to!) and it seems like an opportune moment to break up the confusion.
Yes, Nekos’ parents were shot, because they wouldn’t turn over their guns.
Of course this is ludicrous and extreme, but that’s what I was going for. The point I’m trying to illustrate and maybe didn’t quite get across here is that there’s a good deal of corruption in this entire situation, and no one really wants to see eye to eye, they just want to be right regardless of what is actually going on. In real life, if an officer politely asked for your weapon and you refused, Step One would most likely not be to kill you. Obviously this is a story and things are exaggerated, but I assure you they’re exaggerated for a reason in this instance.
From a writerly perspective, when I was working on this element of the story I was mostly looking for something specific that would divide people in America, and while there are a million hot-button issues that would do that, the second amendment is one thing that almost everyone you ask will have a very distinct opinion on. Many people are both for and against the legality of civilian citizens possessing firearms, and they’re very firm in whatever belief they choose to take. Therefore, what would happen if you threw gas on the fire?
Keep in mind, that this is not the only story to Messenger, merely the beginning of a series of events. I’m not trying to preach whether it’s right or wrong to own a gun; I have my own opinion on the matter but I’m keeping it quiet. The point is, this is a conflict. Is it exaggerated in this story? Yes. But lots of things in stories are. I call artistic license. I hope you won’t quit reading here; I promise things look up later.