We know, right? We know that, at the end of the discussion, after we’ve talked about racism and hatred and mental illness, what remains are the guns. No, you won’t get rid of racism and hatred and mental illness by taking the guns away, but nothing will ever get rid of that. Those aren’t tangible things. Ideas can’t be taken out of someone’s hands, alive and warm or cold and dead, melted down, and eliminated.
But guns can be.
Guns amplify the racism, foster hatred, and give an easy outlet to the mentally ill. The sad part is that we know this. We know it to be true. Even the vast majority of people who cling to the belief that only guns can stop guns understand the equation. Easy access to guns means more murder.
But we are so afraid. Politicians are afraid of the NRA. Gun owners are afraid of government power. Everyone is told to be afraid of their neighbors, the black guy walking down the street, the Muslims in front of a mosque. And that fear has made us hold to our guns, if not in actuality then in support of mild laws and compromising politicians.
Yet reality demonstrates again and again that, mostly, the fear is over nothing, over a lie. There’s never a good guy with a gun around when you need one. And, no, more guns won’t solve that.
This post is absent of facts. It’s absent of links. It’s absent of stated context, although you know what the reference points are. They have become a mantra of places: Charleston, Newtown, Aurora, and many more already part of the chant and many more to be added.
This blogger has grown weary of the depraved ignorance that has taken the place of rational discussion. He’s long been amazed at how people who are wary of the motives of the government they elected don’t have any suspicions of the organizations and corporations who only answer to the dollar. Very little surprises him anymore, not even this latest massacre.
It is who we are. It is a price to pay for freedom, we are told. And yet, somehow, we are less and less free.
Editor’s Note: This essay originally appeared on June 18, 2015, on The Rude Pundit, a website featuring commentary by Lee Papa. It was reproduced here with the consent of Mr. Papa.