As someone wisely said about America’s problem with gun violence, after elementary school kids were mowed down at Sandy Hook, we were willing to let the slaughters go on. That was the moment we learned that our country wouldn’t do anything about gun violence, thanks to the power of the NRA and the politicians who are in their pocket.
Whenever I talk about guns, I like to remind people that I am a gun owner, as well as a liberal. This is a hard concept for NRA fanatics to wrap their heads around, but supporting the Bill of Rights goes beyond just the 2nd Amendment. I conceal carry, practice whenever possible, and I think our country needs stricter regulations to prevent horrific episodes of gun violence like the one we saw in Las Vegas last weekend.
The NRA narrative of a “good guy with a gun” doesn’t add up when you are faced with an unknown shooter hundreds of feet up, and hundreds of yards away in the night, raining down gunfire from modified, legal semi-auto weapons. In this situation, only the luckiest and best-trained person with a sniper rifle could have identified and eliminated the threat. A concealed handgun would have done nothing here, and dozens or hundreds of private citizens running around with guns would have only made the massacre worse.
I am not suggesting massive gun confiscation like the conspiracy nuts and NRA shills repeatedly parrot after every horrific episode of gun violence. I simply believe that there should be checks and balances to make sure that we don’t have another mass shooting.
If you want to own an AR-15 or another weapon that can spit hundreds of rounds in a short period of time, you should undergo background checks to make sure you aren’t a terrorist or a psycho. We already require similar safeguards and training for people who transport hazardous material or work in law enforcement, so why not private individuals who don’t have a public safety interest in owning high-powered battlefield weapons?
I support the 2nd Amendment, and the rest of the Bill of Rights. It’s just that the NRA wants unregulated access to firearms and ammunition, the human cost be damned. That’s not common sense, it’s a recipe for disaster.
Until Americans stop swallowing the NRA propaganda and institute strict regulations on high-capacity, semi-automatic rifles, the next Las Vegas isn’t a question of if, but when.