April 22, 2013
Who brought you to the dance?
In her NY Times piece, Cleta Mitchell, a lawyer in Washington and a director of the NRA spent very little time and space providing sound footing for the NRA’s undercutting the Manchin-Toomey gun control legislation. Instead she chose to chide the President for what she referred to as his “public temper tantrum” in the Rose Garden along with mocking New York mayor Michael Bloomberg’s $12 million dollar campaign to “Demand Action to End Gun Violence”.
If she thought the President’s temper tantrum was an isolated event she ought to check into the thousands of bloggers and millions of private citizen rages who have trashed the NRA and their gutless representatives in Congress in a more virulent manner than the Chief Executive did. And please Ms. Mitchell. $12 million is a spit in the bucket to fight for sane gun control in this country compared to the millions the NRA and other gun advocates have spent sustaining the status quo.
Though charging President Obama with “misstatements” in his speech following the Senate’s failure to pass the Manchin-Toomey bill, Ms. Mitchell makes a few herself. And let’s be clear too. This was a failure of the Senate, NOT a victory of the people, as Ms. Mitchell concludes.
The Manchin-Toomey bill failed with a 54 Senate majority supporting it. It was the excessive use of the filibuster by the GOP that sent the legislation to its death. The rules that were intended to give smaller states a bit more voice in the so-called “greatest deliberative body in the world” has become a joke when implemented by Republicans, ever since they lost their majority in 2008.
Something is terribly screwed up with our political system when a minority in this country has that much power and it speaks to the real issue that we should be focusing on So when Ms. Mitchell chortles about a Senate victory in her Op-ed piece, she’s essentially displaying her ignorance about how this bill was defeated.
The two misleading claims she argues against are 1) that this bill was a violation of the 2nd amendment and 2), there was “nothing in the legislation [that] would have prevented another Sandy Hook”. Let’s look at the second claim first.
The Cleta Mitchells of this country love to assert that Sandy Hook was a demonstration of how gun control, short of absolute prevention of gun ownership, did nothing to stop the innocent killings of 20 first graders and six adults. Why? Because Adam Lanza gained access to the weapons he used for the mass murder, NOT from the illegal sale and purchase of the weapons he used but because his Mom had purchased the weapons for herself.
The crime comes from the fact that she failed to store them in a manner that would have prevented her mentally unstable son from getting his hands on them. The guns Nancy Lanza owned were purchased from a licensed dealer where the law currently requires a background check on gun purchasers. So yes, the Manchin-Toomey bill had nothing in it that would have stopped Adam Lanza from doing his dirty deed, except maybe he would have killed fewer had he not also stolen his mom’s Bushmaster .223 caliber– model XM15-E2S rifle, like the one in the picture below. The Bushmaster .223 is an assault style weapon that can hold a 30-round magazine.
Sandy Hook is thus a distraction from what this gun legislation was really aimed at, which was to simply make it more difficult in the future for mass killings similar to the one in Aurora, Colorado, Tucson, Arizona and at Virginia Tech University to happen. It is a lame argument anyone would make that gun control measures like those in the Manchin-Toomey bill will stop most people from killing someone. But it is highly likely to prevent the mass murder killings we’ve seen over the last 30 years that allows a single person to kill higher numbers of people quicker because of their access to the fire power many police departments don’t have and is more likely to be found with military combat units.
Had the two individuals, one in China the day before the Sandy Hook killings and the other in Houston earlier this month used a gun in their assaults, many if not all of their victims would be dead now. As it happened though, their attempts at slaughter were done with a knife allowing many to escape and prevented life-threatening damage to the victims.
As to Ms. Mitchell’s claim about 2nd amendment rights being violated had this bill became law – BULLSHIT, pure and simple. The bill simply consisted of a comprehensive package that expands background checks for gun purchases, increases penalties against gun trafficking, and invests in school safety. None of this violates a person’s 2nd amendment right. In the 2005 Heller vs. D.C. case, gun-proponent and ultra-conservative justice Anton Scalia stated in the minority opinion that “Like most rights, the Second Amendment right is not unlimited. It is not a right to keep and carry any weapon whatsoever in any manner whatsoever and for whatever purpose.”
It’s not exactly gun ownership that concerns us
What Ms. Mitchell was falsely alluding to was that the bill would have created a registry of gun owners; a fear that zealous 2nd amendment advocates claim will be a slippery slope that will lead to the government taking away the guns people now possess. This entire notion is ludicrous since there was absolutely nothing in the bill that would even imply a permanent gun registry was part and parcel to the bill.
Sens. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., and Pat Toomey, R-Pa., who drafted the background check amendment, insist a registry is expressly prohibited.
The language of the proposal says the Justice Department “may not consolidate or centralize the records” on firearms sales or possession. It goes on to say nothing in the proposal would allow the establishment of a “federal firearms registry.” SOURCE
The only slippery slope that is in play here is the one we’ve been sliding down for some time now. When every poll out there has demonstrated that the majority of Americans wanted the regulations stated in the Manchin-Toomey bill and some that were not, yet those who represent us in Congress vote against our wishes, clearly our form of government has slipped from the democratic moorings we inherited some 200 years ago. Control now lies in the hands of special interests with vast financial resources and their lobbyists handmaidens. In this case, it is the NRA.
Over the years the National Rifle Association went from one that evolved out of necessity to properly train our military in good marksmanship back in the 19th century to an expanded role where it served the general public in gun safety awareness. By the end of the 1970’s however, a core group of people who represented an anti-government mindset and with strong connections to the gun industry began to take hold of the NRA leadership. What evolved was a belligerency that fought any and every sensible gun regulation that was aimed primarily to reduce gun violence in this country by keeping firearms out of the hands of those who posed the greatest threat to society.
How do you convince sensible people to allow this bizarre change to take place? Well, you lie and exaggerate claims by portraying government as the enemy. The NRA’s cause was aided greatly by the ultra-conservative takeover of the GOP following Ronald Reagan’s election. Reagan became convinced by his brain trust and financial backers that “government [was] not the solution to our problem, government [was] the problem”.
This meme carries back to the days following FDR’s election who instituted many of the social programs that lifted millions out of poverty and gave them some security in their old age. With the aid of these policies and those of the Truman administration following WWII, we built one of the strongest middle classes of all time. Production took off with high wages for labor while the wealthiest 1% endured their high income tax rate.
But from the 1970’s on, slowly and arduously, that wealthy elite worked to get their people elected to control the legislation that would eventually put them back in the driver’s seat. The high rate the wealthy paid went from 91% under Eisenhower to the 35% under Bill Clinton. In the mean time the average income earner watched as their jobs were shipped overseas to the cheaper labor markets as wages were cut here along with health and retirement benefits that allowed most Americans to improve their lot in life over their parents and retire secured.
But what most people saw was not businesses manipulating the rules behind the scenes but the lie made by wealthy entrepreneurs that they were being forced to cut jobs and wages by government regulation. They were aided in achieving their goals by first effectively casting all liberals as anti-American and anti-Christian and then made the guilt by association claim that the Democratic base is liberal and therefore all Democrats were essentially opposed to American values.
This brought in those poor white Southern contingencies and the mid-West bible thumpers, an alliance the GOP exploited to regain control of the Senate and the House which the Democrats had almost exclusively controlled since the days of FDR.
So what we’re left with here is a charade intended to conceal the real reason behind the NRA’s opposition to the bill – the age-old battle between the haves and have-nots. The need to concentrate the greatest wealth with the fewest people and thus the ultimate control of the political power. The gun lobby, headed by Cleta Mitchell’s beloved NRA, is just another link in a struggle that has been a part of mankind’s history since they broke the yoke of political power under the medieval Feudal system where landed gentry and royalty controlled the masses.
Capitalism portrays itself as the opportunity to make life better for those who work hard and play by the rules, but in reality it has substituted itself for the aristocratic tendencies of the feudal system. What most people fail to see is that working at all is becoming more difficult as so-called “job creators” send jobs to cheaper foreign labor markets and eliminate many others through technology that replaces manual labor. And the rules no longer favor the everyman. They favor the wealthiest, who spend exorbitant amounts of money to make sure their guy or gal gets the nomination and hopefully elected to public office.
The myth that we all have an opportunity to live the American dream has never been more exposed than it is now. The “socialist” label that FDR’s programs were labeled with by the rich in the 1930’s failed to convince enough people to reject them. But as John Steinbeck pointed out later, “Socialism never took root in America because the poor saw themselves not as an exploited proletariat but as temporarily embarrassed millionaires.” This misperception continues today and allows the powerful wealth in this country to win over enough gullible people to help them fight their cause at a grass-roots level, albeit one that is funded by wealthy special interests.
The Horatio Alger success stories in this country are not that much unlike the dreams of the poor Irish catching the leprechaun and forcing them to reveal where the pot of gold is hidden. It’s a myth that exists in all cultures and is exploited by the wealthy to keep government casted as the enemy and away from the misguided efforts that have widened the income gap in this country to historical proportions.
It is this myth that Cleta Mitchell uses in her argument to find fault with sane gun control measures. Government is not only trying to take your constitutional rights away, she argues, but they are inadequate enforcing those laws already on the books aimed at keeping guns out of the hands of the wrong people. Never mind that there are no laws to cover those purchases outside of licensed dealers, where 40% of the gun sales occur. Don’t focus on that, focus on the smoke screen that the NRA is creating.
While some of us get caught up in that dog and pony show, those who are supposed to be above that and faithfully represent their constituency vote instead their fear of losing their job rather than doing the right thing. Greed is a strong force that too often knocks a good person to their knees and THAT is what the Senate’s failure to pass a sane gun control bill was really all about
A Rich Elite and Democracy: Are They Incompatible?
Words for Senators Who Voted Against Background Checks? Dastardly Lily-Livered Spineless Jellyfish
The federal ban in 1993 on assault weapons did matter.
March 19, 2013
RNC Chairman Reince Priebus
If you read all of the talking points being presented by GOP representatives at this year’s CPAC conference you will hear how the GOP needs to be more inclusive and reach out to those groups who consistently vote for Democrats in no small numbers, like racial minorities and women.
“The Republican Party does not need to change our principles, but we might need to change just about everything else we are doing,” said Gov. Bobby Jindal of Louisiana. It was time, he said, “to recalibrate the compass of conservatism.”
Sally Bradshaw, a party strategist in Florida who is an adviser to former Gov. Jeb Bush, said Republicans needed to recruit stronger and more diverse candidates to win races. “I think you’re going to see a very renewed, aggressive effort by this party to put on a different face,” Ms. Bradshaw said.
Henry Barbour, a member of the Republican National Committee from Mississippi who is also on the panel, said the party should not dilute its conservative values, but it needed to broaden its appeal to compete with Democrats. “We did get whipped in the presidential election, and that’s not something that is taken lightly,” Mr. Barbour said. “The demographic changes in America are real, and they are a wake-up call to the Republican Party.” SOURCE
A blind man could have spelled this out to the GOP and in fact this message has been trumpeted every year for at least the last 12 years. But more than being inclusive to the diverse makeup of this nation’s population, there is one area where they need to start being exclusive if Republicans really want to “broaden its appeal to compete with Democrats” and “recruit stronger and more diverse candidates to win races.” Ostracize those who express insensitive and backward-thinking comments like this one audience member attending a CPAC panel discussing minority outreach.
“I’d be fine with that,” Scott Terry of North Carolina said when asked if he’d accept a society where African-Americans were permanently subservient to whites.
During an exchange of views at the panel meeting, 30-year-old Scott Terry, asked whether Republicans could endorse races remaining separate but equal. After the presenter, K. Carl Smith of Frederick Douglass Republicans, answered by referencing a letter by Frederick Douglass forgiving his former master, [Terry] said “For what? For feeding him and housing him?” Several people in the audience cheered and applauded Terry’s outburst.
After the exchange, Terry muttered under his breath, “why can’t we just have segregation?” noting the Constitution’s protections for freedom of association. SOURCE
Son of the South, Scott Terry, claims to be a descendent of Jefferson Davis
At one point a woman, who the Tea Party identified as a representative of Voice of Russia, asked Terry the question “How many black women were there?” regarding the GOP’s roots, Terry retorted, “I didn’t know the legacy of the Republican Party included women correcting men in public.” Is spousal abuse in the future of this man’s wife?
Terry no doubt doesn’t speak for the majority of the Republican party but his affiliation with it and the failure of the GOP to disassociate itself with such people is evidence that changing direction for 2014 and beyond will likely not come anytime soon.
A 3rd party candidate that would incorporate the views of people like Scott Terry will never win any national election so they attach themselves to the more conservative of the two prominent Parties in order to get some traction with their values. Yet it is this low-brow mentality that will always associate racial and gender bias with the GOP and prevent any grand sweep of gaining woman and minority votes.
Their reluctance to cut ties with such people is indicative of Party leaders who still think they need this portion of their base to win elections. It seems clear however that by keeping such people appeased does more damage than it serves their interests. Those who have left the GOP to side with Democrats and those who traditionally vote Democratic are not likely to be wooed by a Party that tolerates a point of view that claims to be superior to those who don’t look like them.
Ironically it is this backward class of people who profess to elevate a Constitution that attempted to view all people equally even though the framers’ words fell short of their actions. It is most likely this reality about the origins of our Constitution that such people cling to rather than the spirit it evokes from freedom loving people of both genders and all races around the world today. What Reagan epitomized as “a shining city upon a hill whose beacon light guides freedom-loving people everywhere” is really nothing more to the Scott Terry’s of this country than a dimly lit lantern on a dung heap for white men only to revel in a past that exists no more.
It’s The Policy Stupid: 4 Policies That Undermine the GOP’s new Voter Outreach Strategy
February 18, 2013
There are times when I am convinced that if we actually were able to recover a live species of homo neanderthalensis, with their smaller brains, that they would come across as Einsteins when matched up to some contemporary Texans today.
There was a time when I was proud to be a citizen of the Lone Star State. It has a dynamic history and a lot of great people have hailed from Texas, including Sam Houston, Buddy Holly and Sandra Day O’Connor. At age eleven I formed a Texas Braggart club from a kit I bought at the local five & dime store. I was the President and my friend Raul Ramirez was the V.P. It lasted about 3-months before disinterest set in and the failure to recruit new members or collect any dues could be secured to sustain us.
John Connally was running for governor of Texas as a Democrat but would change stripes in 1973, a few months after giving the eulogy at LBJ’s funeral. Liberal Senator Ralph Yarborough lost his bid for re-election in the 1970 Democratic primary to the more moderate Lloyd Bentsen. In 1979 William P. Clements became the first Republican governor of the state of Texas.
Following a scandal involving a slush fund for paying SMU football players Clements decided not to run again, paving the way for Ann Richards, a sensible progressive, to eek out a victory against an acerbic multi-millionaire Republican candidate, Clayton Williams. But the writing was on the wall for progressives and the Texas Democratic Party by 1994. Richards lost her re-election bid to George W. Bush and the prospects of ever seeing a progressive or even a moderate hold that office again were clearly not in the foreseeable future.
It was at this point in time that a migration of political and religious extremists started flooding into the state from so-called liberal bastions like California, Massachusetts and New York, and in association with the native-born wing nuts, we have seen a dramatic dumbing down of the state. Texas has since become the butt of many jokes and any pride I may still hold for it is quickly diminished by the eye-rolling I experience from people who reside beyond the opposite sides of the Rio Grande, Sabine and Red rivers.
This herd of fundamentalistic John Birchers have assimilated themselves into the state GOP changing the character of that Party where many now think Attila the Hun was a RINO. Since taking control of both state legislative houses and the governor’s mansion, these people have managed to prevent the state from rising above its sub par level of academic mediocrity over the last two decades.
No better evidence of this exists than when the Texas GOP stated in their 2012 platform their opposition to critical thinking for fear it might reveal some of the flaws in the backward thinking that these people practice.
Knowledge-Based Education – We oppose the teaching of Higher Order Thinking Skills (HOTS) (values clarification), CRITICAL THINKING SKILLS and similar programs that are simply a relabeling of Outcome-Based Education (OBE) (mastery learning) which focus on behavior modification and have the purpose of challenging the student’s fixed beliefs and undermining parental authority. SOURCE
Is it any wonder then that Texas ranks 50th among the states in the percentage of its population 25 or older with a high school diploma. Why bother? It doesn’t take a high school education to fill all of the minimum wage jobs Governor Perry has bragged about bringing to Texas.
This dumbing down of citizens in the state of Texas has been apparent for quite some time now. It was becoming clear as the nation and the world watched with astonishment as the man from Crawford, Texas who occupied the oval office at the time invaded Iraq after creating the largest deficit to date by draining the budget surplus to give taxes to the wealthiest Americans. It would become crystalized however following the actions of the Texas State Board of Education.
In 2010 some of the troglodytes on that commission wanted to make some changes in Texas school books that demoted the author of the Declaration of Independence, Thomas Jefferson, while elevating the sociopath of the 1950’s “Red Scare” era, Joseph McCarthy. Texas was sending strong signals to the world that stupidity was in vogue.
This low-brow thinking is not taking any holidays either. In fact, it appears to be a badge of honor by conservative office holders. Just recently the U.S. Senate voted on renewing the 1994 Violence Against Woman’s Act (VAWA) and it passed, despite the fact that 22 Republican men voted against it. It will come as no surprise to learn that two of those men made up the Texas delegation to the Senate; new Tea Party candidate Ted Cruz and two-term Senator, John Cornyn.
Their reasons for opposing the bill have been trumpeted by ultra-conservative political and religious groups which include the Heritage Foundation and evangelist James Dobson’s creation, the Family Research Council. But the arguments lack substance based on the research of an exhaustive VAWA fact sheet .
The fact that all of the other U.S. Senators, including all of the women, voted for it would indicate that people like Cornyn and Cruz who voted against it did so because of their strong ties to organizations that poll heavily against anything suggesting government oversight or that even hints at “feminism”.
Violence against women gets worse every year as this study done by the American Public Health Association revealed.
Femicide, the homicide of women, is the leading cause of death in the United States among young African American women aged 15 to 45 years and the seventh leading cause of premature death among women overall.1 American women are killed by intimate partners (husbands, lovers, ex-husbands, or ex-lovers) more often than by any other type of perpetrator.2–4 Intimate partner homicide accounts for approximately 40% to 50% of US femicides but a relatively small proportion of male homicides (5.9%).1,5–10 The percentage of intimate partner homicides involving male victims decreased between 1976 and 1996, whereas the percentage of female victims increased, from 54% to 72%.4
The majority (67%–80%) of intimate partner homicides involve physical abuse of the female by the male before the murder, no matter which partner is killed.1,2,6,11–13 Therefore, one of the major ways to decrease intimate partner homicide is to identify and intervene with battered women at risk. The objective of this study was to specify the risk factors for intimate partner femicide among women in violent relationships with the aim of preventing this form of mortality. SOURCE
But clearly the lack of critical thinking by Senators Cruz and Cornyn have lived up to the ambitions of their state Party leaders. Apparently a woman needs a little physical reminder every now and then to help her remember her place in the traditional social order for some here in Texas.
Sorry ladies. You’ll have to develop some high levels of testosterone if you want to avoid this in the future. But we have made it easy for you to purchase a pair of equalizers. We’re a firm believer in violence begets violence.
January 14, 2013
Is finally coming to grips with homosexual unions something that we are inevitably geared for, even in the face of rigid opposition based on beliefs that stem from moral codes that fit a narrow frame of reference about our humanity?
“A mother and father. There’s nothing better for a child!” proclaims a banner at a rally to protest same-sex marriage in France last year
A massive march in France occurred this last Sunday to protest new President Francois Hollande’s proposal to legalize same-sex marriage as people of several faiths and diverse cultures, including some homosexuals, crowded the streets of Paris declaring that this was not an anti-gay march but one that claimed to be “pro-marriage”
Virginie Merle, an eccentric comedian known as Frigide Barjot, who is leading the so-called “Demo for All,” insists the protest is pro-marriage rather than anti-gay and has banned all but its approved banners saying a child needs a father and a mother to develop properly.
“We’re all born of a man and a woman, but the law will say the opposite tomorrow,” she said last week. “It will say a child is born of a man and a man.”
Avoiding religious arguments that could put off the secular French, they struck a chord with voters by stressing problems they saw emerging from same-sex marriage rather than letting the government shape the debate as an issue of equal rights only. SOURCE
As a heterosexual who firmly supports male-female relationships I am also a strong civil libertarian and I am not fully convinced by the arguments that the anti-gay voices give to their opposition of same-sex marriage. Yes, calling this a “pro-marriage” protest doesn’t eliminate the obvious fact that there are anti-gay sentiments with those who use such semantics.
Postulating that giving legitimacy to same-sex marriage will somehow turn nature on its head is both ludicrous and ignorant. How else will children of gay couples interpret their existence? Using virgin births as an explanation won’t work for male same-sex couples and springing from the head of either partner like Athena was from Zeus just isn’t very plausible either.
But hyperbole is all you’ve got when you’re trying to conceal that this isn’t a protest against something that originates in the religious values you were raised in? We all have been assured that God created Adam and Eve and not Adam and Steve. Yet the origins of this dogma comes from some of the same sources that have deprecated women for centuries and devalued other cultures because they don’t share certain religious views.
There has indeed been a lot of studies that validate that children raised in stable two-parent families with a father and a mother adapt much easier to the culture they’re raised in. The male figure role model exacts discipline and leadership while the female role model nurtures the child’s need for affection. Both of course can provide elements of the other but their strengths lie is specific behavior patterns formed over time.
The key word here however is “stable” and without love and fair-mindedness a child raised without any of these traits will suffer, not benefit. By citing certain problems that can arise if a child is raised by a same-sex couple ignores the reality that there are problems that can also arise and often do with heterosexual couples. Presuming that the mere presence of opposite genders in a marriage is more likely to ensure a well-adjusted child is foolish.
A child reacts and thus develops to his social environment and if problems arise because a culture is antagonistic toward gays, is that problem the result of a biological certainty or an environmental factor that was manufactured out of set prejudices? One is innate the other is learned. One is fixed at birth the other is conditioned by codes and mores that change overtime as social structures transition and adapt.
I don’t disparage the values people were raised with. It is important that certain standards be established to give us a feeling of coherence in an often chaotic world. But these standards are malleable. Insisting that they are unalterable truths is a denunciation of mankind’s ability to grow and adapt to changing circumstances.
There will always be those who will only leave their past screaming and clawing and social change that occurs too fast will create more problems than it solves. Not all change is good but not changing at all is something our species is not conditioned to. We need to find the right balance for necessary change because rigidly staying put will likely ensure our slow demise.
December 15, 2012
Will we continue our cowardly ways of dealing with this social disease or will this become the pivotal point where we stand up to the merchants of death in this country?
Another senseless mass killing from gun violence occurs in Newtown, Connecticut
What is the message we take away from the Newtown Conn. school mass killing? When crazies do things like this, what could conceivably motivate them to take another human life and then, in a lot of cases, their own. Anger and rage are likely a part of it aimed at someone or some idea represented by those they kill. But if this is part of this insanity, how would that apply to killing children so young as 5 years old whose lives have yet to develop any ideological bent that would offend the meanest advocate of some world view?
We’ll never know. And after the shock and horror of it all subsides we will once again fail as a society to take concrete action to address the source of all this pain – easy access to weapons of destruction and their increased firepower. The zealots of 2nd amendment rights will evoke the bogus fears about how their right to own guns is being threatened and demand even greater access to such weapons. Some with the belief that this will really help deter those who would engage in such horrible actions. This falsely presumes of course that we’re dealing with rational people.
There is only one sure answer to reduce the gun violence in this country and that’s to find the courage in enough people to finally stand up to the Wayne Lapierre’s of this country and shout down the fear-mongering that declares any restraint of gun sales is somehow a slippery slope to despotism. The ardent defenders who see the 2nd amendment more than just the necessity of establishing a “well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state” have convinced too many Americans that private ownership of small arsenals of deadly weapons are truly what the founding fathers envisioned for future generations.
Human fear buys into to such nonsense too easy and it is this fear that the makers and devotees of guns promote to make sure we don’t think outside that box they have created. We see the violence on TV and it overwhelms us. Our fear allows these scenarios to explode in our mind thinking that we’re next and that only by equalizing our chances by possessing a gun or guns will allow us to sleep safer at night. It’s a myth we allow ourselves to take seriously because we are reticent to admit that we are too afraid and uncertain.
The Second Amendment does NOT guarantee the right of any and all citizens to own any and all kinds of guns. It DEMANDS, in the name of national security, that we regulate it.
NEVER let assertions of the so-called “sanctity” of the 2d Amendment bully you into thinking it guarantees unregulated weapon ownership. It does NOT. SOURCE
It is this fear that ties us up and prevents us from taking charge of the gun manufacturing and sale of weapons in this country designed solely to kill; just like other nations have. Because of the laws they have in Britain, only 39 people were killed with guns. That same year there were over 9100 people killed with guns in this country. The silly argument that people kill people, not guns, is lost on that victim and their surviving family members who was the 20th person killed by someone who had the means to kill 20 people before having to reload.
We can make fortresses out of the schools and treat children entering each day as potential threats in order to save them but will that really stop another mass killing that we just witnessed at the Sandy Hook Elementary School? I do not think so. If there is one message the shooter in this tragedy was telling us, it was that there is no safe place from people like him. As long as we make it so easy for such people to purchase weapons of mass destruction, NO ONE is safe. And all the fear mongering and twisted logic to continue a way of life that allows this country to buy weapons in the fashion we have become accustomed to will only prevent us from doing what needs to be done.
“God will not have his work made manifest by cowards” – Ralph Waldo Emerson