The Gun Debate Paradox
Ok, let's get started by looking at the gun control problem that led to another school massacre with a very good question:
Twenty four hours after every mass shooting the media asks, "What can we do?" Now they also ask, "Why has nothing been done to fix the problem yet?"
The lead in:
The coverage timeline will include calls to the NRA, who will decline to comment. Experts will discuss legislative efforts for change that are widely supported by the public, such as universal background checks. The media will wonder why, with so much support, gun control legislation failed. The media might also point out that at the state level legislation has expanded the availability of guns in more places. This is what The Trace editors call the paradox of the gun debate.
The core political problem:
"While widespread public support exists for many gun regulations and policies — including bump stocks—
pro-gun advocates are significantly more active than their counterparts when it comes to engaging politicians and government agencies."
Trace has done some great work explaining how the NRA marketing team and their activist base does it. For example, when the ATF was looking at reclassifying bump stocks as machine guns under federal law, the NRA base mobilized The ATF got 36,000 comments, 85 percent of commenters were opposed to the regulation of bump stocks. And these weren't form letters from Russian bots either.
. . .
In addition to the online work, the guns everywhere people made sure to have plenty of speakers lined up to testify at state legislation committees opposing any bump stock ban. Three months later and bills to ban bump stocks are being shot down. House panel votes against bill to ban bump stocks in Virginia.
A study of pro gun activism:
I use the phrase pro-gun men on purpose. While researching why past state gun control legislation had failed, but "gun rights" legislation had passed, I came across an earlier piece that I found fascinating. It referenced a study published in the June issue of Social Science Quarterly by Kristin Goss, a researcher at Duke University.
Goss analyzed the results of Pew Research Center surveys administered in the six months following the 2012 mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School. She found that pro-gun men were significantly more likely to engage in political activism than any other group, dwarfing the efforts of individuals in favor of increased regulation, regardless of gender.
This analysis came from Spocko over at Hullabaloo. Go here for charts and links to the original stories:
The time is ripe to change the debate. Call outs and rhetorical body slams are flooding out. These are headlines and snippets:
Nikolas Cruz was reported to the FBI last year after boasting of plans to be ‘a professional school shooter’: report
Only in America:
The horrific tragedy at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, FL led Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT) to take to the Senate floor to note, yet again, that these this "epidemic of mass slaughter...happen nowhere else other than the United States of America", where Republican officials, controlled by the funding of the massacre-enabling National Rifle Association, refuse to take even the slightest action, year after year, massacre after massacre, to try and curb the nation's gun violence epidemic.
The numbers alone are horrific:
EVERYTOWN, the gun-control group backed by Michael Bloomberg, says this is the 18th school shooting of 2018. We are seven weeks into the year. That means there’s a school shooting every 2.5 days. There have been 30 mass shootings this year, according to the Gun Violence Archive.
Americans are fed up with shallow condolences from politicians:
Kimmel writer quotes every GOP lawmaker’s post-Florida ‘thoughts and prayers’ tweet — and how much money they took from the NRA
An obvious political truth with a questionable solution:
Ex-GOP rep urges voters to ‘flip the House’ if they want results on gun control: ‘Republicans will never do anything’
Will Corporate Dems actually do anything if Congress is flipped? I doubt it a lot.
This just scratches the surface. The idiocy from gun nuts and right wing faux news sources is a whole other angle that I'm gonna leave for another day. I pray that the rage against school shootings has finally boiled over to the point that something will actually be done.
[Edit to add link to The Trace]
(There are so many articles on guns and gun violence at The Trace that I just wanna throw the whole shebang out to c99p readers)