So we must ask why this is happening. Only in America is it happening. The facts are there for all to see. We have seen them over and over and over. So how can the NRA deny the facts? For too long they have managed to bully elected leaders into doing their bidding while Americans have become victims of bullets. For too long the NRA leaders and lobbyists have somehow convinced their own members that if they don't have this kind of fire power, the government is coming for their guns. They demonize and bully me and others like me who only want a peaceful community without fear of bullets flying in every public place. Their illogical argument is that there are bad guys with guns everywhere who are waiting to get them so only a good guy with a gun can counter this enemy. From the linked article in Mother Jones, above:
The other problem with that logic is that too often, it is the very good guys with the guns who are committing the violence. They are "good" because they have managed to pass a background check. We need to remember where the guns used in these mass shootings came from in the first place. Adam Lanza took his mother's guns after he killed her with her own gun. Cho (Virginia Tech shooter) should not have been a legal gun purchaser because of his history of mental illness. But his name was not on the list of prohibited purchasers. The Columbine shooters turned to a friend to get guns at a Colorado gun show with no background check. The Red Lake shooter took his grandfather's guns, shot him and then shot up his school. I could go on and on. What if these guns had not been so available? What if the owners of the guns had made sure they were very safely stored? What if we required background checks on all gun sales? But we have made it too easy for some of these folks to pass a background check. And if they can't, no matter. Guns can be had by all. They are stolen. They are trafficked easily in the illegal market. They are bought through a straw purchase or from private sellers who don't ask for background checks. Almost all guns start out as legal purchases in the first place. Our system is broken. It is not working. That is why we need to have the national discussion that is finally happening way too late to save those 20 little children.A closer look reveals that their case for arming Americans against mass shooters is nothing more than a cynical ideological talking point—one dressed up in appeals to heroism and the defense of constitutional freedom, and wholly reliant on misdirection and half truths. If only Sandy Hook's principal had been packing heat, the argument goes, she could've stopped the mass killer. There's just one little problem with this: Not a single one of the 62 mass shootings we studied in our investigation has been stopped this way—even as the nation has been flooded with millions of additional firearms and a barrage of recent laws has made it easier than ever for ordinary citizens to carry them in public places, including bars, parks, and schools.Gun rights die-hards claim the Portland mall shooter saw an armed good guy—who ran for cover instead of firing—and promptly shot himself dead. Obviously.Attempts by armed citizens to stop shooters are rare. At least two such attempts in recent years ended badly, with the would-be good guys gravely wounded or killed. Meanwhile, the five cases most commonly cited as instances of regular folks stopping massacres fall apart under scrutiny: Either they didn't involve ordinary citizens taking action—those who intervened were actually cops, trained security officers, or military personnel—or the citizens took action after the shooting rampages appeared to have already ended. (Or in some cases, both.)But those facts don't matter to the gun rights die-hards, who never seem to run out of intellectually dishonest ammo. Most recently, they've pointed to the Portland shopping mall rampage earlier in December, in which an armed civilian reportedly drew his gun but thought twice about potentially hurting an innocent bystander and ducked for cover instead of firing. The assailant suddenly got scared of this retreating good guy with the gun, they claim, and promptly shot himself dead. Obviously.
Becoming self aware is a good thing. I wrote in my last post about the many NRA members who have awakened to the nonsense spewed by their organization. These folks aren't afraid of their guns or their rights being taken from them. They are afraid of their children and grandchildren being taken from them. They have rejected the extremism of Wayne LaPierre and the crazy and extreme folks who head up the organization. They want to be part of the movement to prevent the next mass shooting or the next stray bullet from ending up in a child's head, or the next domestic shooting or the next child who finds a loaded gun carelessly left around the house. But then, these are the reasonable majority of gun owners and even NRA members who happen to agree that reasonable restrictions on guns won't be the end of the world as we know it. The others? The minority? The bullies who have had their way for far too long? Let's take a look at their lunacy.
You can always count on the most extreme members of the gun lobby to be against anything the gun violence prevention movement (and the majority of Americans, including NRA members) are for. This latest ludicrous reason for why the NRA and gun owners should be opposed to an assault weapons ban as proposed by Senator Diane Feinstein, has to do with discrimination:
You just can't make this stuff up. But let them talk. Does the public agree with this lunacy? I doubt it. And it gets loonier and loonier. Check out what Texas Congressman Louis Gohmert just said about weapons used in mass killings:Former National Rifle Association president Marion Hammer compared a proposal by Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) to ban assault weapons to racial discrimination. According to Hammer, "banning people and things because of the way they look went out a long time ago. But here they are again. The color of a gun. The way it looks. It's just bad politics."Hammer's comparison came during a discussion on NRA News about Sen. Feinstein's plans to introduce legislation to ban assault weapons during the new Congress. Hammer warned that the United States government could engage in firearm confiscation "in order to control the masses."
Of course, Gohmert is very wrong but never mind the facts. Here is the truth (below) about deaths by hammer. And raise your hand if you ever remember a mass "hammering" anywhere in the world. From the article:
According to the FBI, in 2010, there were 8,775 people who were murdered with guns, compared to 540 people who were killed with blunt objects, a small minority of which were people armed with hammers. The exponentially-higher number of people killed by guns also includes many innocent people killed by indiscriminate gunfire, such as drive-by shootings. After all, there are no “drive-by hammerings.”