It is the same old story from tragedy to tragedy.
A thug who bought his weapon on the illegal market guns down a police officer. Or, if you haven’t forgotten, it wasn’t that long ago that multiple innocent children were killed by a mentally fragile culprit in a Connecticut town.
It is totally predictable. One public official after another expresses their “deep sorrow” over everyone’s loss and then goes back to business protecting the interests of the National Rifle Association.
At the very same time as two innocent New York City police officers were being laid to rest, the United States Supreme Court is in the process of deciding whether New York’s law banning out-of-state residents from bringing their guns into the city is constitutional.
You don’t have to guess what the court will do as they have been itching to get a Second Amendment case so that the majority can give gun owners another victory. There is no doubt that they will rule by a 6 to 3 margin that licensed out-of-state gun holders are free to walk our New York streets.
If you want to pick a case of utter hypocrisy let’s talk about Texas.
From 2013 to 2017, 15,695 firearm deaths were reported according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
On average 3,139 people are killed each year with a gun. It comes out to roughly one death every 2.8 hours. How much does gun violence cost Texas annually?
If you take into account medical care, law enforcement and the criminal justice system as well as costs to employers for work loss, that’s $632 per Texan per year. Add up all the costs and that comes out to $16 billion as estimated by the Giffords Law Center. That is not a direct government cost, but the estimated society costs.
Another way to look at Texas gun deaths is that in the year 2017, there were 3,513 firearm deaths compared to 15 U.S. military casualties in Afghanistan.
What was the state’s answer to rising gun violence? The state legislature has passed a number of pro-gun laws including the one allowing an unlicensed person to carry a gun in a school or church.
The latest change in the law allows any person over age 15 to carry a firearm without getting a license. What was the federal response to these insane laws?
Neither of the two Texas senators, Ted Cruz or John Cornyn, had has anything to say. For the record, Cruz has received $176,274 from the NRA and John Cornyn has taken in only $82,352.
If you check on NRA, contributions to some of the other Republican senators the numbers are eye-popping. According to the Brady Campaign, Mitt Romney(R-UT) has received $13,647,676 from the NRA during his career. Roy Blunt(R-MO) has gotten $4,555,722 and Marco Rubio(R-FL) has pocketed $3,303,355 in NRA money. Florida averages 2,568 gun deaths a year, but that is of no consequence to Rubio.
Every time there is a shooting in the states inhabited by senators such as Cruz or Rubio, they utter their “personal sadness over the loss of innocent lives” and then it’s back to the business of catering to the NRA.
Thanks to New York Attorney General Letitia James, the NRA has had a tough time trying to escape bankruptcy. She has gotten the courts to dismiss the NRA’s attempt to hide from pending lawsuits and continues to battle them on a variety of issues.
There is no doubt that responsible gun owners should be allowed to own a gun assuming they are capable of using it.
Do you need an AK-47 to hunt rabbits or other wildlife? Should a Staten Island resident be allowed to keep an AK-47 in his or her apartment? The answers are obvious. But sadly, the solutions are elusive.
Many innocent people are still destined to die due to illegal guns. And many elected officials will continue to express their condolences every time there is a mass shooting and then they will go back to doing the bidding of the NRA.