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It just seems like the same old tape gets replayed every year or two. We are given some horrible event involving a firearm and a lunatic and which winds up with innocents forfeiting their lives for the “price of freedom” to buy, own and use virtually any kind of gun one chooses to possess.

I have been reading the articles: all the comments of “multi-round drum magazines” which the shooter in Colorado could have had; his use of bulletproof clothing; how much worse it could have been; how he purchased several guns in a short period of time and hundreds of rounds of ammunition over the internet - all entirely legally. It's getting so that these events are occurring so frequently I can tick them off on my fingers, they are still so fresh in my memory: Thurston High School, Columbine High School, Gabby Giffords, Reagan, the Kennedys, James Brady, John Lennon, Dr George Tiller...on and on and on.

In America, reason in these matters is invariably trumped by demagoguery, the blurring of issues, the outright lies which, repeated over and over again, become as truth to millions of my countrymen. It is the same with universal healthcare; with global climate change; with bankers who gamble with their depositors' savings; with poisoned tap water which catches fire from gas seeping up from hydro-fracked wells. The truth or falsity of virtually every important issue we face in 21st century America is impossibly deadlocked by those most vested in the business of it; by who wins and who loses in the great game of America: money. When you have money, you have power in this country. And when you have power you can determine political outcomes.

And so we can reliably presume that in the board rooms and marketing departments of companies like Colt Industries, Sturm-Ruger, Glock, Winchester Repeating Arms, and Remington Arms they are working overtime to once more bring to the public the entirely specious argument that people kill people. Not their guns. Not their ammunition. Mr. LaPierre and his like can be reliably depended upon to produce some statement absolving guns from being in any way whatsoever a cause of these and other killings. And they will be featured on cable channels and broadcast media everywhere.

And we can also presume that senators and congressmen are deftly fashioning public statements deploring violence on one hand, and on the other  steering clear of the obvious for fear of upsetting their constituents who have been bamboozled in the last 20 years from being a clear minority to a majority who think stricter controls on firearms are uncalled for, thanks to relentless advertising by organizations like the National Rifle Association and their corporate benefactors.

Indeed, the two men running for the presidency have been deafeningly silent on this whole issue, even in the face of this most recent tragedy in Colorado. It is the same phenomenon as the argument over whether or not humanity is fouling its own nest. Once, a majority of us signed on to the pronouncements of the scientific community that global warming is at least partially caused by human activity. Thanks to the Kochs, Exxon Mobil, Shell, the coal industry and their like, that majority has evaporated.

The fact of it all is that our leaders have become the lead. What we have is 535 members of Congress with their wetted fingers in the air, testing whether what position on an issue will gain or lose them votes. No one in Washington DC is willing to say the right thing if it involves jeopardizing their job. In politics, as in war, truth is the first victim and retention of power is the first goal. In Washington there are no more Profiles in Courage. The concept of the citizen-politician is as outmoded as  rotary dial telephones. Once you are elected to an office in Washington, you stay in Washington. And, generally, you get quite rich.

So here we are, once more, mourning the loss of 12 young citizens who did absolutely nothing to cause the loss of their chance at life. The candles will be lit, the columns of pundits and photos of grieving mothers published, public officials will display their sadness and outrage, and a few people will march for a few days demanding something be done. But it will be for naught. Like the tides, emotions will ebb and we will return to trying to just survive. America seems, to this writer, to be unable or unwilling to face the unvarnished truth – on the issue of gun control or anything else.

We will continue sacrificing our children, our leaders, our wives and husbands, even the guy who runs the night shift at the local 7-11, for the “freedom to keep and bear arms.” Maybe some future generation of Americans will get it right but right now, truthfully, I despair.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (8+ / 0-)

    "In the long run, we are all dead." - J.M. Keynes

    by flylooper on Sat Jul 21, 2012 at 10:22:29 AM PDT

  •  The truth is (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    gfv6800, oldpunk

    that a gun is an inanimate object. Won't do a damned thing on it's own.

    Sure, they make it easier for one person to kill another, but that's still one person killing another person.

    It's funny- some drunk runs over a grandmother, and nobody blames the car...

  •  Unhfortunately I totally agree (0+ / 0-)

    with you. I will also make a statement here that I first MUST preamble thusly - I am simply an observer and wish no one any harm by expressing my opinion in the following paragraphs.

    Sadly the carnage and deadly murderous violence via large capacity automatic weapons and hand guns will continue unmitagated UNTIL such murderous assaults are inflicted WITHIN THE HALLS OF CONGRESS, UPON MEMBERS OF CONGRESS. In the immediate aftermath of any such  horrific event Congress will act with legislation to reduce the access to such weapons in the United States of America.

    As I sit here enduring a barrage of redundant reports echoing across the American networks from "on the scene eyewitnesses", I too wonder when will sanity return to this great nation of ours? I sit here in a weighty state of depression yet overcome by a certain weariness over the increasing frequency of these destructive inhuman bloody  acts with no solution anywhere in sight.

    Long before we Americans reached this point of weakness and fear both in our lives and in our politics, America demonstrated that it was in a social drought of courageous leadership for the common good. The rise of Joseph McCarthy and his federally funded communist witch hunt hearings clearly highlighted a nation suffering in the death grip of fear and in trepidation. As the hearings dragged on this belligerent lowly Congressman recognized that the entire nation was almost under his control, without a single national hero on the horizon to oppose him.

    McCarthy decided to make his grab for absolute power by dragging the General Staff of the U.S. Army before the political inquisition of his anti-communist House Investigatory committee. Caught by surprise, the Generals turned in panic to Professor Joseph Welch of the Harvard Law School for representation as their chief legal council.
    McCarthy was really amused from day one when Joe Welch made his appearance before McCarthy's committee along with the first of the Army Generals summoned to appear. However, the elderly looking, unassuming Joe Welch immediately tore into McCarthy and his staff and within a few days utterly destroyed Joe McCarthy and unmasked the real purpose of his anti-communist witch hunt. As I watched Joe Welch in action I was overcome with the realization that HE and HE ALONE was the SINGLE HERO, the one individual who personally saved American democracy from the prenicious threat of McCarthyism.

    Unfortunately in 2012 America democracy is again under severe attack. However this time the domestic enemies arrayed against us are lethal in many more ways than was Joseph McCarthy. These enemies have completely compromised our federal legislative body, the American Congress. No less than three powerful special interest groups (the NRA et al) have recently emerged with clearly unmistakeable public threats to elected officials in Congress that if they vote against the wishes of these special interests they will oppose their re-election with millions of dollars. Their public threats are in a not so subtle warning that "we will be monitoring how you vote" on this issue! The NRA is the leader in this form of political blackmail, and thus far no AMERICAN HERO HAS EMERGED TO FIGHT this form of POLITICAL EXTORTION by special interest organizations.

    One of the important things that gun owners and advocates fail to realize is that the NRA also represents  gun Manufactures both domestic and foreign in America.  The NRA is highly aware that the main objective of these manufacturers to sell as many guns as possible; and as such the NRA will do whatever is necessary to facilitate those sales. Therefore in the perspective of the NRA their constituents are the gun manufacturers, and their interests are the NRA's PRIMARY concern; while the interests of their dues paying members constitute their SECONDARY concern.

    Likewise we have reached the point in American history where the President and elected members of Congress represent the interests of the American people on a "SECONDARY" basis - the deliberations for which are completely subject to the will and directives of American corporate and special interest organizations who in reality constitute the federal government's PRIMARY constituents. So long as this relationship between the American federal government and the NRA continues massacres and slaughter of innocent citizens will continue unabated here in fear-filled America.  

  •  Re this: (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Hastur
    And so we can reliably presume that in the board rooms and marketing departments of companies like Colt Industries, Sturm-Ruger, Glock, Winchester Repeating Arms, and Remington Arms they are working overtime to once more bring to the public the entirely specious argument that people kill people. Not their guns. Not their ammunition. Mr. LaPierre and his like can be reliably depended upon to produce some statement absolving guns from being in any way whatsoever a cause of these and other killings. And they will be featured on cable channels and broadcast media everywhere.
    Then is it not time for these merchants of death; these profiteers of war to be encouraged to prove their argument through the compassionate act of perpetual support, political leverage & overly generous funding for ALL programs & services that educate, aid, assist, rehabilitate, cure & seek to cure/repair/relieve from pain  those that kill, might kill or survived being killed by their product?

    From mental health services to pharma research to prosthetics to community supports-the need is great-and so is the funding.

    Beit a wartime vet with PTSD or TBI or otherwise weaponry maimed to the lone gunperson with  issues, the merchants of death & destruction can surely "prove" their specious justifications through the perpetual lobbying, supporting & funding for ALL programs & services required to:
    educate
    aid
    assist
    rehabilitate
    cure & seek to cure or repair or relieve from pain all
    those that kill, might kill or survived being killed by their product.

     Perpetually. Their monies. Their power. Starting now.

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