As per usual, any opportunity to advance the gun control agenda is a good one, especially when it comes to the exploitation of victims.
Here “Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva: Co-chair, Congressional Progressive Caucus” uses the fresh bodies of NYPD police officers to make a series of nonsensical arguments:
Today marks four years since my friend and colleague Gabby Giffords, and 18 other people, were shot in a senseless act of violence that claimed six innocent lives. The somber occasion comes just weeks after NYPD officers Wenjian Liu and Rafael Ramos were assassinated in cold blood while on patrol in Brooklyn. Both men left their families that morning to serve and protect the people of New York, not knowing they would never return. My heart breaks for both men, for their loved ones whose lives have a void that can never be filled, and over what it means for our society that incidents of gun violence — often times completely preventable — continue to extinguish lives and shatter families.
Officers Liu and Ramos were public servants, and they deserve to be honored for the communities they kept safe, and for the sacrifices they made. But we owe them more than memorials; we owe them our sincere efforts to make sure the senseless violence that claimed their lives won’t claim others. We owe their wives and children, suffering through unimaginable grief, the assurance that their pain won’t needlessly be felt by others, too.
Always start with emotion, crocodile tears really sway the people. And no anti-gun screed is complete without the hackneyed “think of the children!” argument, as seen here.
Sadly, those who call for action to prevent gun violence are often times accused of exploiting a tragedy. It has somehow become acceptable to many of my colleagues to simply express condolences and repeat tired excuses for inaction like “we can’t legislate away crazy,” or “guns don’t kill people, people do.” Meanwhile, their intransigence allows the violence to continue as the roots of this problem are ignored.
You don’t say. Yes, why on earth would you be accused of exploiting a tragedy when you directly exploited a tragedy in order to push your politics? If this isn’t exploiting a tragedy, what on earth is it?
The fact is you don’t need to “legislate away” crazy if you ensure that those who shouldn’t have guns can’t get them in the first place. Gun violence is a societal problem threatening every American, and politicians are elected to solve society’s problems. Victims and their families deserve better from elected officials than hollow condolences. The American people should expect more from their leaders than excuses on why they refuse to lead.
Exactly how he plans to ensure this, he doesn’t say. The shooter in this case, Ismaaiyl Brinsley, had been arrested 19 times previously, including a felony conviction. The firearm used had been purchased in 1996 in Atlanta; how it wound up in New York nearly 20 years later isn’t known yet. Given that there are 232,000 or so firearms stolen every year the author doesn’t seem to understand how the real world works.
The families of Officers Liu and Ramos — and all families impacted by gun violence — have my sympathies and my condolences. But just as important, they have my word that I will fight to curb gun violence. As the 114th Congress convenes, I urge my colleagues to do right by those who sent them here, and address this problem facing every one of their constituents. There is no excuse for us not to pass universal background checks and to close gun show loopholes. We should invest more in mental health programs, and make sure that instruments of war like high capacity magazines aren’t used on our streets. These are common sense steps that will save lives, and ensure that we honor the memories of those who have fallen. Congress should pass them right away.
Oh. Right. “Common sense” steps, like making sure “instruments of war like high capacity magazines” are banned. How he gets from point A to B is Underpants Gnomes logic, naturally.