The holidays seemed to have brought about a suspension of sorts from all things political and gun control-related. It was dreadfully quiet. Even the terrible shooting in Webster, NY failed to make a serious dent in the calm before January’s Fiscal Cliff voting storm.
It took me over three weeks to publish my last post, and only a few hours to follow up.
Today’s gem, coming (as many of my articles seem to show) from Slate.com, illustrates just why the AR-15 rifle is not just the gun of choice for lone gunmen itching for a rampage, but why it’s so important to recognize whose rights are being infringed.
The article gets it right, here, with this money quote:
“The lobby’s fervent defense of military-style semi-automatic weapons like the AR-15 seems motivated primarily by a desire to protect the profits in the rapidly growing “modern sporting rifle” segment of the industry.”
Here’s the problem, and it’s a whopper. We are bent on locking up anyone who we feel might be a threat to our personal safety, instead of focusing on treatment and taking the time to find the underlying cause of the problem in the first place.
It’s insidious, really.
We have companies trying to keep their bottom lines from collapsing. This includes gun manufacturers, who make up a percentage of the companies receiving federal subsidies. What’s that, you say? That’s news to you?
We devote so much of our time and resources to buying drugs that we’ve forgotten there are other ways to improve our lives. There are also other ways to improve people’s lives than jail-time. Yet, that’s exactly what we hear proposed. It’s not about giving these people access to better health care, so they can work through their problems without the use of deadly weapons. It’s just so much easier to assume that we can put them away and keep them out of our space. Only, that’s not possible, thanks to Reagan’s dismantling of the existing health care infrastructure 30 years ago.
We got where we are today because we were sweet-talked into believing we were doing what was best for our country. Now we’ve got prisons overflowing (and privatized), and we don’t know when the next gunman is going to go off like a powder-keg.
It’s not sane. No wonder we have gun control problems. We subsidize manufacture of the weapons that kill us. And we make our people pay out-of-pocket for health care.
How sane is that?