SMOKE AND MIRRORS: If 90% of the American public supported the outlawing of abortion, you bet your sweet zygotes that our elected officials would have it done. What’s so different about the background check?


Uh-huh. That’s right. I’m gonna deal with this today, because re-sharing this photo on Facebook didn’t make me feel any better. I shouldn’t write about it now because I’m really pissed off, and I always try to sleep on things I’ve written before I hit publish (or send, for that matter). I’m so pissed off about yesterday’s despicable senate capitulation to big money and the gun lobby. I’m pissed off even though I knew way back in December—about 13 seconds after I heard the death tally in the Newtown massacre—that nothing was going to change. It was this firm knowledge that was going to keep me from getting pissed off when today happened. I was supposed to shrug, sigh and move on. Bombing in Boston, Cowardly Congress, ho-hum, do these pants make me look fat?

But about 12 seconds after that grim announcement that 20 babies had been heinously slaughtered at the end of a weapon designed for warfare, I had a kernel of hope that, Hmmmm…maybe the obliteration of a bunch of (almost all) white children will finally tip the scales.

I quickly dismissed that sense of possibility. I’m a realist, after all. But the human spirit has a proclivity toward wishful thinking, an affinity for hope. It’s a survival thing, I think, an involuntary response to unbearable trauma.

Well. I attribute my anger tonight to that stupid fucking hope. That singular floating dust mite of ridiculously irrational, completely intangible bullshit that must have lodged itself somewhere deep in my body even as I’ve said, over and over again when discussing this topic, We will never change.

I knew. I knew nothing would come of the twenty murdered kids. If congress couldn’t make change after the gun was turned on one of its own (narcissists as they are, this—if anything—should have compelled them to act), why would a smattering of six-year-old body parts across a schoolroom have any impact?

Even as 90%— NINETYFUCKINGPERCENT!—of American people support background checks for gun purchasers: Nothing. 45 “nay”s (I’m not counting Harry Reid’s strategic vote) and our representatives stacked their papers, and straightened their ties and headed home for the night with their jobs and their pay checks and their free-health-care-for-life happily in tact. Shit we, as voters, bestow on them with the humble expectation that they, oh…I don’t know…represent the fuck out of us? That’s right. They represent us. Is 90% so loud as to be deafening?

Meanwhile, gun violence goes on and on, blahdeeblah, I wonder what shoes to wear to the gala on Saturday….

You know, black children die every day in America thanks to guns, and nobody in congress cares. It’s a fact of life. But congress doesn’t care about dying white kids either. It occurs to me that we may finally have undeniable proof of a level playing field. Are we supposed to be hopeful about that?

No. No we are not. We should be depressed and ashamed, because we all lose. Screen shot 2013-04-17 at 10.44.54 PM

Look. 90% of Americans do not agree that we should confiscate all guns. Nor do 90% of Americans agree that we should ban automatic weapons, though I line up in that group, too. What 90% of American people do agree on, is the requirement of a background check for gun purchasers, not unlike that required to obtain a driver license. Or a passport. Or a child. Funny: You have to have to have a background check to adopt a child, but not to kill one. Any bonehead can do that. In fact, has done that. And will again.

3 Responses to SMOKE AND MIRRORS: If 90% of the American public supported the outlawing of abortion, you bet your sweet zygotes that our elected officials would have it done. What’s so different about the background check?

  • Marilyn says:

    I’m furious at the failure of Congress to do what’s right. Firecrackers are banned, for God’s sake! Why not assault weapons? A background check before a gun sale is completely reasonable. My Senators did vote for gun safety reform and I sent them thank yous. Now I’m going to start sending shame-on-you notes to the senators from other states who voted against requiring background checks. I don’t have a big bank account, but I plan to send token campaign contributions to their opponents in the next election.

  • San says:

    You are — as always — so eloquent. This is beyond frustrating. It’s the most ridiculous “defense” of a “basic right of every American citizen” that I have ever encountered.
    What about the right to grow up to be an adult and have a chance at life? Who cares about that?

  • I kept getting the texts from the Giffords to call my representatives in Congress. My representatives did support it. I hope the people vote out their reps who clearly do NOT represent the will of the people in any way, shape or form.

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