Once again, it was morning in America. A morning that almost exclusively occurs in America, as we woke up yet again to the unmitigated horror of the unhinged enjoying kid-in-a-candy-store access to weapons of mass murder. Something no other high-income country is willing to endure.
This particular morning was even worse than our “normal” ones, like the one after a school shooting most are unlikely aware occurred last week in Rockford, Washington. This time, over 50 people were murdered at a concert in Las Vegas, and so far, at least 400 injured. The toll will likely only grow over the next day. It truly is an insane, and record, death toll.
More details will come out on the shooter, whose name I refuse to utter, and how he had access to numerous firearms—although that is less difficult in this country than getting your hands on cold medicine. But what many people may not know is how the National Rifle Association, the guys who now run interference for arms dealers so they can take their cut of the blood money, have been working in the shadows recently to try and make this and the parade of everyday shootings more deadly and more profitable for them. It is all they know to do.
You see, gun sales have been down as the NRA has gained a Trump but lost a trump card in the form of scaring white Americans that the bad black president will come marching door to door to confiscate their guns—and maybe try and date their daughters. So what can they do to up their profit margins again—after all, we wouldn’t want Wayne LaPierre flying coach, would we? The simple answer is “accessories,” and one in particular that’s a favorite of everyone from snipers to serial killers—the silencer—has been added to the top of their wish list in the U.S. House of Representatives as H.R. 3668.
Back in the days before so-called scholars and charlatans read into “well-regulated militia” the ability to carry anything short of a bazooka into your kid’s pre-school for protection, we had a Congress that looked at guns they way one would if you were trying to serve the interests of your constituents. So with a rash of gangland violence during Prohibition in the 1920s and 1930s (over 300 law enforcement officers were killed in one year in the early 1930s), Congress passed the National Firearms Act, which successfully regulated silencers the way all guns should be regulated; background checks, registration, finger printing. You know, nutty stuff for firearm add-ons that make it easier to kill innocent people.
This made them more expensive and risky to acquire for felons, which of course was the goal in the first place. But if you’re the NRA, and killers of various stripes are labeled as market segmentation, you can see the same possibilities in 300 million American guns mostly lacking silencers that you saw in pushing concealed carry laws that convinced housewives to stick handguns in their purses for “protection.”
So they invented a supposed reason for this new need—with Donald Trump Jr. spearheading that push—which is that hunters have to protect their hearing. Apparently, nobody’s told the NRA about these things called “earplugs.” Otherwise, if possessing a weapon that fires bullets and (theoretically) a somewhat higher IQ than an animal is so negligent an advantage you need a silencer too, you're probably a pretty shitty hunter and may want to take up a new hobby.
But wait, there’s more: Not satisfied with simply allowing murderers to murder in a cone of silence, in the very same bill the NRA and their GOP-congressional handmaidens are attempting to legalize the sale of armor-piercing bullets, so long as those are designed for “sporting purposes.” You know for the bunnies sporting kevlar.
Also, worth a mention, the NRA is pushing legislation for a terrible idea known as concealed-carry reciprocity, which I debated in the pages of The Daily Caller with NRA top-lobbyist Chris Cox in the past. This bill would force states with actual requirements beyond a heartbeat (and this would seem to be negotiable) for a concealed carry-license, to recognize licenses issued by other states where every gun is sacred and domestic battery is merely a lifestyle choice.
You'd think the fresh carnage of Las Vegas would change things, but remember, after 20 little children were gunned down in their school in Newtown, a Republican Congress did nothing. Hell, the GOP has nominated a ghoul for the U.S. Senate from Alabama, Roy Moore, who blames residents of Newtown for the shooting. You see, it’s because they don’t follow Moore’s version of who their God should be.
Or, it could be because gun control doesn’t work. I mean it’s only had a measured positive impact in Canada, Belgium, Japan, Germany, Australia, Denmark, the United Kingdom, Israel, Portugal, Iceland, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Sweden, South Africa, Spain, Italy, Ireland, Brazil, Switzerland… we could go on, but I think you get the point.
Folks, these people are in love with their very own golden calf that kills. It’s a habit they can’t seem to kick no matter how many of their constituents get hurt. Even after this horror show in Las Vegas. Just remember, this wasn’t a lone wolf killer, as is now being reported. He had hundreds of accomplices in Congress and at the the NRA’s headquarters in Northern Virginia. It’s up to all of us to take our country back from them.
Cliff Schecter has a new podcast where he often talks about guns and other issues facing our republic. Go here to subscribe!