I’ll make this quick-
Maybe it’s just me but it seems the pro-gun lobby has really been hitting the mental health angle a lot recently. I keep hearing “the real thing we need to stop shootings is to fix our mental health system.”
I’m all in favor of fixing it but this is not that hard to understand-
People with powerful guns kill a lot more people than people without powerful guns.
If Adam Landza had gone into Sandy Hook with a knife, or a hunting riffle or even with a gun with just 10 rounds, would there have been the same amount of casualties? Sure, let’s fix our mental health system. However, if you want to reduce gun violence, there is no other way than to reduce access to powerful guns…
Now that the Obama campaign is done, I’ve been thinking about spending some more time writing, especially now that I’m also job hunting. I’ve been debating about what my first post should be about at this blog. I am passionate about about a great many topics-transportation, labor rights, the role of government, taxes, conservatism, race in America, movies, music, allied airborne operations in the Netherlands during World War II (hence the title of this blog). However, something about today’s tragic shooting has struck a nerve.
I have seen a few people saying “let’s talk about politics later” or “let’s make it about the victims and not about lawmakers.” Too often I hear this remark about a great many things. I have been known to kill conversations when I’d explain to people what my job was. “Organizer, what do you organize?” “Ah, politics…” Then people would talk about how both sides are wrong and how they didn’t care much for politics.
The thing is everything is political. The right has understood this for years. Before the 1970s, the way religious conservatives protested what politicians did was by not voting. Now, they show up in such huge numbers and dominate the debate so much every politician has to end their speech with “God Bless America!” On issue after issue, from taxes to crime to war to “family values,” conservatives learned being in your face and getting people to think about these things is far more effective than being polite and nice about it.
If you want to know why I’m passionate about politics, it’s because of days like today. Was the shooter thinking about American gun control laws? Probably not. However, these laws affected those who lost their lives today. Here is an issue where the vast majority of Americans support sensible policies but politicians are too afraid of those in the minority because they will be more likely to vote.
So, next time someone says “can we not talk about politics?” just remember-everything is political…