Editor's Take: Why The F**K Won't Congress Pass Gun Control?
By: Kayla Pasacreta
Admittedly, when I first saw the headline that there was a shooting at a high school yesterday, I didn't feel much. My heart didn't drop. I didn't gasp. We see these headlines nearly every day.
The sad reality is that as a country, we have grown alarmingly desensitized to mass shootings; they have become so commonplace that we often glance at the headlines without processing the painful reality of the dangerous nature of this country. According to the Gun Violence Archive, 2017 was the deadliest year of mass shootings in modern U.S. history.
Pulse nightclub. Las Vegas massacre. Texas church shooting. Countless others.
The Columbine shooting happened in 1999, and 15 people were killed. The public reaction was drastically different. At the time, we did not accept mass shootings as a form of normality, and Congress immediately rallied for tougher gun control. The 2015 shooting in Newton, Connecticut, where 20 toddlers were killed, didn't move Congress to do anything. Now, in 2018, there have been 18 school shootings already, and Congress still isn't doing shit.
So why won't Congress do anything about it? Check out the #receipts Kimmel writer Bess Kalb brought forth to Twitter:
These numbers are real. The National Rifle Association (NRA) invests millions of dollars into candidate, campaigns, and the Republican Party to ensure they do not advocate for tough gun control measures. In the 2015-2016 election cycle, the NRA gave Republican candidates over $17,385,437. And Donald Trump's campaign? The NRA invested $21 million.
So, when Donald Trump took to the podium Thursday morning to blame yesterday's shooting on mental health and negligence without an utter mention of gun control, you shouldn't have been surprised. This is the same guy who revoked Obama-era gun checks for people with mental illnesses. In his address to the nation today, he stated,
“We are here for you — whatever you need, whatever we can do, to ease your pain,”
— DONALD TRUMP
Anything but advocate for tougher gun control. Right.
When Republicans rally for gun control, it's not because they are die-hard lovers of the Constitution (after all, they helped elect a guy who we're pretty sure colluded with Russia to win the election). Instead, it's an embarrassing display of their unrelenting loyalty to capitalism, racism, and corporate greed. The NRA doesn't truly believe in giving all Americans the right to protect themselves, and they certainly don't give a damn about protesting the injustice when lawful black gun-owners like Philando Castile are killed by police for no reason.
Republicans, stop offering your lousy thoughts and prayers when you continue to ignore the chance you have to make an actual difference. Sure, gun control may not stop every mentally deranged person from being able to pull off these mass shootings, but if it helps at all, why shouldn't we at least try?
In the words of Rep. Jim Himes (D-Conn), "The honest answer to that question is not a damn thing. This institution is not going to move ... 20 dead babies in Connecticut wasn't enough to move the heart of this place," he continued, "This place is in the thrall of the NRA."