There’s no denying it: The National Rifle Association has won — again. Even though more than 3,000 Americans have died via gun violence since 20 children and six adults were murdered at Sandy Hook Elementary in December, the NRA has somehow managed to triumph. The victims’ families and gun-control advocates have lost. Forget an assault weapons ban — or any other serious gun regulation. It’s not happening.
Nowhere else in the world are so many weapons in circulation as in the US. In no other country are citizens as well armed. The U.S. Constitution guarantees every American the right to move about in public as though he or she is John Wayne in person. One can see it as a national tradition. But this martial approach to liberty is also a relic of the past and one that is out of step with the times.
Germany’s Stuttgarter Zeitung.
If you’re wondering what the rest of the world has to say about the Newtown massacre, or our lax gun laws, here’s a list of what newspapers across the world are saying.
American politicians need to get off their butts. So far, most, including the president, have abdicated a moral responsibility to talk frankly about guns and rights, ironically, they say, because the issue is “complicated.” Goddamn right it’s complicated. That’s why we ought to talk about. Democrats still adhere to the fear that if they mention common-sense gun rules, their party will lose the backing forever of gun owners and those who see gun ownership as a stand-in for checking government power. For the most part, though, that coalition isn’t the Democratic Party’s coalition, and it becomes less so with every election.
The gun rights lobby could lead the charge here, but they won’t, because they’re afraid they’d lose the chance to demagogue politicians who rise up against them. The NRA’s opponents are as central to the NRA’s successes as anything else.
So: Ball’s in your court, Mr. President.