Columns 2015

Another day, another shooting

Here is an excerpt from President Obama’s reaction to the shooting at the Colorado Planned Parenthood clinic last week. “This is not normal. We can’t let it become normal. If we truly care about this . . . then we have to do something about the easy accessibility of weapons of war on our streets to people who have no business wielding them. Period. Enough is enough.” Poor guy. He’s actually delusional enough to think that this shooting will make any more or less of a difference than the many shootings before it.

Robert Lewis Dear was described by those who knew him as a malcontent and drifter who had numerous run ins with the law. Yet he was somehow able to gain access to the kind of lethal weapons that are only ever necessary on the field of battle. Except he decided to create his own battlefield, one in which he held total advantage as he wreaked havoc on a medical clinic. And despite what some might want to call it, Planned Parenthood is first and foremost a medical organization that offers health care to women who could not otherwise afford it. They provide everything from breast cancer awareness to birth control to hormones for menopause. Abortion is a minuscule part of their daily activities and, it should be added, is perfectly legal.

Operation Rescue president Troy Newman, in commenting on the shooting, said, “One thing we do know is the guy is a very dangerous, unstable individual who desired to kill people, and that is not in any way what the pro-life movement stands for.” He should probably be made aware that no matter what you stand for, if your public voice cries hate, someone will hear the hate and act on it. Sadly, in America, we’ve made it overwhelmingly easy for people who hate to get guns that should never be seen outside of a battlefield.

I find myself wondering where all those governors and Republican presidential candidates are in this matter. They have gone strangely silent on the homegrown terrorism that has become an almost monthly occurrence. Why are they not screaming that old white drifters are not welcomed in their states and, if elected president, they will form a registry of all drifters and do their best to expel them from America? These people are willing to keep out Syrian refugees despite the fact that no Syrian has ever been a terrorist on American soil. Yet a certain type of American male continues to kill indiscriminately on American soil and no one seems anxious to create laws that would keep these lethal weapons out of their hands.

So if I’m reading this situation correctly, terrorists on American soil who are American are not to be feared or smeared. In fact, we are not allowed to even suggest laws that might alleviate the bloodshed through restrictions on the purchase of weapons of mass destruction. But a Syrian refugee who has never attacked America, never done anything violent, and only wants to find a safe place to raise his or her family, that person is someone we should fear and to whom we should refuse to offer asylum. Quite frankly, I’d rather take my chances on that Syrian refugee. I’d feel a lot safer with a refugee family living next to me than some weird male loner who was getting ready to do god knows what to god knows whom because their minds are so twisted and warped while gun access is so easy.

For so long as we cower in fear at the “power” of the NRA, for so long as we twist the words of the Constitution that calls for a well armed militia to include an over-weaponized crazy person, for so long as we remain a violent, gun obsessed society, for so long will we not be safe in malls, movie theaters, colleges or doctor’s offices.

It would behoove us all as we exit our homes in the morning to bend over and kiss our butts goodbye. There’s always a chance today will be the day you are in the wrong place at the wrong time and it will get shot off by some maniacal terrorist who thinks the color pink is out to get him. But don’t worry. He probably won’t be Syrian.