Yesterday, I blogged the high cost of gun violence. Making people aware of the hidden costs of guns and their danger can help people realize that something has to be done. I was thinking kids shouldn’t have to be dodging bullets on their way to school in poor neighborhoods. And, shouldn’t it be considered a hate crime when Gabby Gifford was gunned down? And, when young adults shoot down children in schools? Shouldn’t the CIA or the FBI be involved in hate crimes?
I watched Frontline last night for answers and none of those things were discussed. I was right when sometime back I called out the NRA as the new MAFIA.
After Reagan was shot, he didn’t touch on the subject of reigning in the proliferation of guns.
President George H. Bush, when the NRA called federal officers and cops “…jack booted government thugs kicking down doors…” by the NRA’s most successful fear monger, Lobbyist Wayne La Pierre, Bush resigned from the NRA. La Pierre publicly apologized and was chastised by the NRA Board for “backing down”. And from that point on, he very effectively got his message of fear moving forward and never backed down again. What is the message?
THE GOVERNMENT WILL TAKE AWAY YOUR GUNS.
Is that what the American people bought into? Yes.
When Clinton became President, he got gun legislation passed barring the sale of assault weapons, the Brady Bill, requiring identifications and some success toward other regulations. When Gore ran for President, the NRA pressed hard in their home states and won Arkansas and Tennessee to shame them. Their message? Fear.
THE GOVERNMENT WILL TAKE AWAY YOUR GUNS.
During George W. Bush’s terms, the subject never came up.
Now, Obama. After Columbine, he was warned not to buck the NRA. Any attempt would be met with no legislation passed by the Republican house. He shamefully walked away.
But, later, one Democratic senator, a member of the NRA, got movement toward closing the gun show loophole. And the NRA was actually talking compromise. But another gun organization, with 300,000 gun owners warned the NRA that they should never compromise. Always win. The NRA walked away from the table and speared one of their own. They dropped the ball even though polls show that 91% of Americans believe our gun laws are too lax, and, 80% of NRA member households feel that better gun control is needed.
The assault weapons ban has, in the meantime, expired and was not renewed.
But, by Sandy Hook, Obama could no longer ignore his conscience. He moved fast hoping for some momentum after little 6 and 7 year old kids were gunned down in their school. Five white Republican senators killed that bill.
THE ONLY WAY TO PROTECT KIDS IN SCHOOLS FROM A BAD GUY WITH A GUN IS TO HAVE A LOT OF GOOD GUYS WITH GUNS.
That was La Pierre’s response. And, gun sales rose with fear the government was going to take them away. Get them now before they come after us.
What Frontline investigations showed is that is doesn’t take thousands of people to keep that fear moving. It only takes 100’s of dedicated members to call politicians, show up at meetings, to be outside the senators office, to be passing out NRA publications of fear that promise to defeat anyone who supports even basic gun controls. Then with a fat pocketbook, the NRA spreads that fear on television with well targeted ads.They are trying to get legislation passed to prevent lawsuits against them. “Get the government off our backs.”
They ride the horse of fear for the sake of ultimate power. They brag with pride that they stand up to presidents and control government.
The people whose children were gunned downed, and thousands of other gun violence victims feel betrayed by a government that is hobbled and refuses to protect them.
One woman from the gallery when the vote came up 5 short, shouted YOU SHOULD BE ASHAMED OF YOURSELF.
Joe Biden had to quiet her but in his heart he agreed: “How could they vote down legislation for identifications at gun shows, the gun show loop hole, back ground checks and bans on assault weapons in public?”
And Frontline? They did not name the five senators. They are as scared as our government.
The future? All of the new Republican’s sworn in this month are white, Christians. Not exactly a cross-section of American demographics.