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Dear NRA and gun advocates,
Because here’s the thing: for people who think further gun regulation should at least be on the table, your insistence that guns are in no way to blame for gun deaths sometimes reads as you viewing this type of violence as an acceptable price to pay.
Nothing about this situation is acceptable.
I buy the argument for the freedom to bear arms. I don’t buy that choosing to have guns somehow doesn’t also mean we bear the social responsibility associated with the risks that choice creates. If you believe we, as a society, need greater freedom to bear arms than the rest of the world then surely we, as a society, need to take our responsibility to reach out to the mentally ill – or whatever you think causes gun violence – very seriously. It’s incumbent on us to ameliorate the downside that’s associated with the particular personal freedom we choose to hold so dear.
That includes you, gun owner who is fearful of your guns being taken away. You’re not responsible for the actions of any one violent nut job in particular but you are obligated to recognize that violent nut jobs are a thing and they get hold of guns, legal and illegal, with alarming frequency.
I get that you probably feel having a better armed populace is a great way to stop mad men in their tracks. But even then you invoke the notion of ‘madness.’ Addressing prevention before leaping to Wild West shoot outs still seems like a great idea.
Because let’s get this straight: “Shit happens. What do you want me to say?” is not an adequate response. We are not the country of, “Meh. Watchagonnado” when 20 kids get gunned down in the space of minutes and those weren’t even the bulk of gun deaths that happened that day.