Congress can no longer stay mum on guns
About a month ago, following the Las Vegas mass shooting, this newspaper put forth that our divided America should at least agree that we have a problem with gun violence in this country, and that mass shootings are a uniquely American menace.
It seemed pretty obvious, that if we can at least agree on that fact, then we could move toward improving the tragic national embarrassment of deranged white men slaughtering innocent people with military-grade guns.
The next one, the editorial put forth, was only a matter of time.
We didn't expect it would be only a month.
For the gun rights zealots who think any gun law is one too many; for the lawmakers who consistently follow yet another American mass shooting by saying "Now is not the time to discuss gun control," we'd like to restate: We have a problem, America. Nowhere else in the world does this happen on such a routine and widescale basis. Do we have the guts to at least address it?
Our forefathers were indeed ingenious, but the Second Amendment was written with the ball and musket in mind, not a bump stock and a full magazine.
We also understand that there were laws and regulations in place that could have potentially stopped this Texas gunman, but policies were not followed.
Had the Air Force not botched the paperwork on the shooter's domestic violence history, this tragedy may — may — have been avoided.
Hunting rifles, guns to provide home and personal safety, gun collections of aficionados and investors, these are firearms that should be protected as a right for sane, law-abiding Americans. Military-style semiautomatic weaponry that has no purpose other than rapid and massive killing ... why the commitment to protect it?
Moments of silence in the aftermath of tragedy have their place, to honor and pray for the murdered, to at least try and help ease the suffering of loved ones left behind. But kudos to the Rep. Ted Lieu (D-California) for walking out during the moment of silence in Congress following the Texas shooting.
Congress is not the place to be silent. It's the place to act, to show leadership. This issue is crying out for leaders.