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Author: BobR    Date: 10/04/2017 14:53:12

Monday was a pretty bad day for me. I went to work with a cold, having found out the day before that a co-worker had died suddenly and unexpectedly. The first thing I saw when I opened by laptop was the horrific shooting in Las Vegas. Later that day, was the news about Tom Petty. On top of it all, Cheetolini was still making everything worse with his non-stop stupidity, blundering, lack of decorum, and disdain for anyone who isn't rich, white, and male.

One definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. Yet here we were again facing an insane level of carnage, and we were treated to the same lame "thoughts and prayers", tossed off almost as if it was a social requirement before going back to cat videos. Once again, we were met with the same "this is not the time or place to discuss common-sense gun regulations" (although they likely word that as "gun control").

Once again, ineffective leadership in the White House spends more time making excuses for its failures than in actually trying to do something. We know how many people died (so far) and were wounded in Las Vegas. With most of the interior of Puerto Rico still being difficult to access, we don't know how many people have died (or will die, of starvation, dehydration, and disease), like refugees in a 3rd world country. Of course - these are U.S. citizens that deserve everything our country can possibly do.

What can we do to effect change? This week, the Republican-led Congress was getting ready to consider a bill to legalize silencers for guns. They let the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) expire, throwing untold numbers of children into healthcare limbo. Do we really expect them to do anything about reducing gun deaths in the U.S.? They want to legalize silencers for chrissake.

Congressman Steve Scalise (R-LA) had just returned to Congress after being shot on a baseball field in yet another instance of targeted gun violence. Has he changed his positions on gun legislation? What do you think?

The reactions are (for now) muted, yet typical. Bill "Cancerous Testicle" O'Reilly says shootings like this past one in Las Vegas (and ostensibly in New Town and Orlando, etc.) are "the price of freedom". Freedom?... the freedom to be murdered? Whatever happened to the right to Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness for which we went to war to secure? I've written this before, but thinking more guns will make us safe is the same mindset that led us to MAD with nuclear weapons.

What about the "good guy with a gun" nonsense? That was shot down (no pun intended) by a performer at the show, Caleb Keeter (guitarist for the Josh Abbott band), a self-described gun-rights supporter. He rightfully pointed out that "We actually have members of our crew with CHL, and legal firearms on the bus. They were useless. We couldn’t touch them for fear police might think we were part of the massacre and shoot us." Which is one of two very important points to the "good guy with a gun" argument in these public settings:

1) Police can't tell a good guy from a bad guy with a gun in a live shooting situation, unless the good guy is wearing a badge.

2) Other people can't tell either. If several people pulled out guns, they could easily have started shooting at each other (or the hotel). The mayhem would've been even worse.

There are some good articles already out there about how to approach this. One describes how heavily we regulate nearly everything and made excellent points about how car regulations could apply to guns as well. Another provides grim statistics regarding gun violence. Who will read these? People who already agree with the conclusions.

We are WAY past the point of needing to address this. The founding fathers certainly didn't intend for this when they wrote the 2nd Amendment (Article I, Section 8 is pretty clear about the whole "militia" thing that the gun-humpers studiously ignore). Nothing happened after Sandy Hook. When the proposed solution to children being murdered at school is "arming the teachers", we are lost as a country. Tens of thousands of lives later, we are no closer to making changes than we were then.

So for now, I will sit here in my padded cell and repeat "thoughts and prayers" over and over again and see if that makes a difference.


12 comments (Latest Comment: 10/04/2017 23:53:50 by TriSec)
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