Doing What’s Right After Newtown
The pattern of response to tragedies like Newtown is set in stone. Grief, sadness, mourning, identifying the victims, understanding the killer’s motive, and the news gets a little quieter and more reverential and then we move past it.
How about we do something more this time? How about we not allow a fringe organization packed to the gills with all manner of bizarre (sometimes bigoted) conspiracy theories to dictate the safety of our society. How about we tell the NRA to keep quiet and let us go about the business of helping our society?
The familiar arguments have already made the rounds. First, we can’t talk about remedying gun violence in the immediate aftermath of yet another mass shooting. Then the argument is made that sensible gun laws wouldn’t have prevented the particular mass shooting we’re talking about. These are both nonsense excuses.
Gun violence is a regular part of American life, unfortunately. There are very few days in between incidents like these, unfortunately. And you don’t assess the viability of a law based on the particular crime it may or may not have prevented. You make choices about these laws based on common sense. It may not have prevented this mass killing, but it may prevent the next one.
The assassin is responsible for his horrific crime, but we have no obligation to make it easier for him and others to murder like this, or worse.