Recall the NRA's old rallying cry - "Guns don't kill people. People kill people."
Well, people with guns - yes, and explosives, too - can kill and injure a lot more people and faster than people without guns and explosives. As a 24 year-old showed us so vividly the other day in Aurora, Colorado.
Twelve people - ranging in age from 5 to 51 - have died and at least two more remain in critical condition. A total of 70 people were shot.
Reports say James Holmes "allegedly" - that word is miserably weak here, but it is necessary - strode into a dark movie theatre with three guns, one of which was a "military style" weapon capable of shooting 50-60 rounds a minute. Back in his apartment, which was rigged with bombs, were explosive components and 6000 rounds of ammunition.
Somehow, some commentators have suggested this incident - what a tragedy to be labelled with a minimal little word like "incident!" - should not be politicized.
Hell, Yes it should be politicized!When it comes to guns, we look like a heavily armed third-world nation. What about those who argue - as some did after previous "incidents" of mass-murder on high school and college campuses and political gatherings - that if more of the population were armed and at hand in those locations, they could have prevented so many deaths by firing back? Late at night in a dark and crowded movie theatre?
When will we, the people, rise up and challenge the carefully parsed and honed arguments of gun clutchers who are against banning assault weapons (watch 'em surgically carve up the definition of "assault weapons"!), who allow virtually unpoliceable gun show sales, who empower concealed weapons, who lobby against even reporting gun statistics ... and dare public officials to challenge the single-issue advocacy of the gun lobbyists? How can elected officials skitter and duck and defer when the gun lobbyist's advocacy is so solidly counter to public opinion in poll after poll?
There will be no time like the present to campaign to reinstitute the Federal Assault Weapons ban.
And Yes, NRA and fellow apologists, that may be "just" the beginning. A darn good start it could be!