From Krist Boardman:
This is as close as it gets for me right now. My son Alex is a captain in the Fort Lauderdale. FL fire department. He does not have any school age children yet. But a couple of his first responder friends in the fire company were attending the school which was the latest target of a mass shooting in Broward County where 17 children were needlessly murdered. His friends’ children were not shot but some of their friends were. Yet none of us has to know anyone who was so slain to grieve for these lost children. I didn’t know any of the 20 children murdered in the Sandy Hook Elementary School tragedy either, but it is none the less outrageous that they did lose their lives. Their parents and families daily endure these unspeakable losses and yet something should have been done then and it was not. The incidents of mass shootings are so numerous since then they are mind-numbing.
Politicians have been saying that when such a tragedy occurs, “it’s not the right time to talk about this. We are praying for the victims and thanking the first responders that this was not worse.” They refuse to discuss gun safety. Two weeks later the incident is forgotten and the conversation never occurs. The NRA, gun manufacturers and others who lobby for guns give to millions of dollars to politicians so there is no meaningful conversation about guns. As a result, nothing is done to curb gun violence.
There are no clean hands among the politicians: Sen. Marco Rubio has received $3 million in campaign contributions; Sen. John McCain $7 million. Former Dem. Senate leader Harry Reid was against suing gun manufacturers and so was my hero from 2016 Bernie Sanders who also did not want to make it legal to sue gun makers. These are just a few;
There are so many national lawmakers who are so deeply compromised that they would make a vast rogues’ gallery of money takers who have sold the people’s and children’s safety for the sake of this lobby.
It’s interesting that at a time we are having an opioid epidemic, there are numerous lawsuits being filed against drug companies which have made it easier for these addictive medicines to fall in the hands and bodies of drug abusers. We haven’t heard the argument yet, “drug companies don’t create addictions, people do,” which is true because people take the medicines and drug companies do not physically force their pills and needles into addicts’ mouths and arms. But drug companies enable those who are vulnerable to addiction and they bear some of the responsibility for the epidemic as do doctors who may not be exercising due diligence to prevent opioids from being abused by their patients. These are controlled substances, after all. There are good reasons these are controlled by strict laws with tough penalties.
When is enough gun violence enough? It should already have been. Do we really need more examples of school shootings, church goers gunned down in their own parishes, and nightclubs, movie theaters and outdoor concerts being attacked for this point to be driven home with some finality? This does not even contemplate the daily shootings that are not mass slaughters. How can we even claim to be civilized if we allow this to happen? Do our own children need to be killed in a nearby school to make this point?
It used to be the gun lobby agitated only for the God-given “rights” of shooters to kill animals. “Every man (and woman) is a primordial hunter,” the rationale went and therefore each hunter needs to connect with his primitive instinct to kill something so he has something to eat for dinner. But game wardens regulate hunting and prevent hunters from destroying herds of wildlife with automatic weapons. Not so people: it’s against the law to kill dozens of people all at one time even as it’s against the law to kill just one person. But it’s not against the law to buy a weapon that will kill dozens of people almost all at the same time. That is why it keeps happening.
The background check is the supposed device whereby a person who is not supposed to get a weapon can be denied access to one. But having been doctored by the poliitcians, bureaucrats and gun fanatics, the data base is frequently lacking essential information that would have prevented a tragedy if the information had been entered.
Then there are the gun shows that are exempted from the background check. A big gun show held recently in Bel Air MD may have sold guns to customers who would otherwise have been ineligible to buy these weapons. Does Harford Sheriff Jeffrey Gahler know who these persons are so he can more effectively protect life and property of his constituents?
I’ll bet he doesn’t know who the ineligible persons who were there who may have bought their weapons. Wouldn’t it have been wiser to have this gun show loophole closed?
When I say gun advocates have lost their minds I need only point to my home state of Wisconsin. There recently they had a disabled hunt where disabled people were taken out into the woods and fields in their wheelchairs and given permission to shoot at animals that were not disabled. When I first heard about this I could not believe it. I thought a “Disabled Hunt” was when able-bodied people went into the wilderness to recover disabled people before they became irretrievably lost and died, not that disabled people were trying to disable animals prior to their deaths. Surely disabled people do not want able-bodied animals to suffer too, but I was wrong.
Then Wisconsin legislators enacted a law making it legal for children and babies to get hunting licenses, supposedly under the supervision of their parents. Otherwise I am having a hard time picturing toddlers toddling down the bunny trail shooting guns that may kill themselves or their companions while they are waiting to bag some big game.
I guess I just don’t understand these things. I’d be better off in Australia where they did have a big gun problem but they solved it. We just can’t seem to solve our problem here.