You know how the NRA and other gundamentalists love to trot out their reality challenged assertion “only a good guy with a gun can stop a bad guy with a gun”? NRA president Wayne LaPierre or NRA spokesperson Dana Loesch are almost guaranteed to be right out there in front of cameras on those blue moon occasions when a gunman stops another gunman. They even love to get out there when an incident of gun violence happens so that– like vultures–they can take advantage of a tragedy to push people to buy more guns. I have an extraordinarily difficult time believing that LaPierre and Loesch are ignorant of the fact that more guns equals more (not less) crime. That evidence has been out there for some time, but of course, to make that knowledge widespread would likely impact the sales of firearms. And the NRA doesn’t want that. Another thing the NRA doesn’t want is for the little bubble they live in to burst when reality strikes. Like it did today, when a gunman shot and killed multiple people at a Waffle House in Nashville, TN, only to be disarmed by an UNarmed man. They were likely just as unhappy to hear that as they were to hear that the good guy–James Shaw, Jr–is Black (among the many boogeymen the NRA use as part of their fear mongering tactics are African-Americans).
While the NRA heads are likely trying to figure out how they can whip USAmericans into a gun buying frenzy (as they love to do in the wake of incidents of gun violence), the rest of the country is responding predictably. On one side are the people giving lipservice to the need for increased funding for mental health services and those who can’t seem bothered enough to offer more than ineffectual thoughts and prayers. On the other side are exasperated supporters of gun control who, like myself, are wondering when the breaking point will be reached in this country.
When will we as a nation decide that the levels of gun violence in the United States are off the charts and that we need to take serious measures to reduce the problem?
When will we start to acknowledge that the primary characteristic shared by nearly all mass shooters is their gender (male)?
When will we start to acknowledge that mass shooters are most commonly white?
When will we acknowledge that precious few civilians have a valid need to own an assault weapon?
When will we acknowledge that the availability of guns explains our epidemic of mass shootings?
When will we acknowledge that mentally ill people are more likely to be the victims of gun violence than the perpetrators?
When will we recognize that the convergence of mental health and gun violence occurs not in mass shootings but in suicides?
I don’t know when we’ll reach that tipping point. I do know it’s not with today’s tragedy, which saw four people lose their lives in a senseless act of violence. We’re left right where we were after the last mass shooting:
•a populace overwhelmingly outraged at staggering levels of gun violence that continues unabated
•cowardly and corrupt politicians giving vapid lectures on the need for greater mental healthcare in an erroneous attempt to link gun violence to mentally ill folks which is erroneous bc MENTALLY ILL PPL ARE MORE LIKELY TO BE VICTIMS OF GUN VIOLENCE THAN PERPETRATORS
•less than useless offers of thoughts and prayers by civilians and politicians who appear oblivious to the fact that thoughts and prayers have achieved absolutely nothing other than to give the most superficial of appearances of ‘doing something’
Later. Rinse. Repeat. Over and fucking over again.