Our Opinion: No surrender on America's gun bloodshed
It has been three years since Americans learned just how much gun mayhem their "leaders" are willing to accept. Which doesn't mean that Americans ever have to be resigned to this carnage.
On December 14, 2012, 20 first-graders and six educators were slaughtered by a gunman at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut. The crime was so horrific that there was hope that it would lead to the passage of tough federal laws on gun violence, but President Obama's package of reforms were blocked by the National Rifle Association's congressional minions.
Gun massacres are now just a routine part of the fabric of the American society. In recent weeks, an apparently misguided "pro-lifer" gunned down three at a Planned Parenthood clinic in Colorado and 14 people were shot to death in San Bernadino, California in the biggest gun slaughter since Newtown. The heartbreaking shooting deaths of nine black parishioners at a church in South Carolina last June has all but faded into history, pushed aside by more recent gun-caused bloodbaths.
Americans, however, cannot forget or surrender. U.S. Representative Mike Thompson of California, chairman of the House Democrats' Gun Violence Prevention Task Force, has done neither. He is co-sponsoring a bill requiring nationwide background checks at gun shows and for those who buy guns from individuals online. Both will supersede inconsistent and poorly enforced state laws. Neither violates the Second Amendment, which does not preclude gun regulations.
This legislation will not get through the Republican House but Republicans should at least explain why they oppose such reasonable regulations that will reduce our unique gun carnage. They can also explain their opposition to Representative Thompson's call for an end to the 19-year ban on federal research into the causes of gun violence. What is the gun lobby afraid researchers may find?
Republican congressmen, beginning with "pro-life" fraud Senator Ted Cruz, should also explain why they believe people on terrorist watch lists should be able to buy guns in the U.S. An effort to prevent this failed last week in the Republican Senate.
The clock is ticking down to the next gun massacre. The majority of Americans who are weary of the bloodshed can't give up the battle.
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