Over the past weeks since the killing of twenty children in Newtown, I have heard crazy people demand and threaten over their right to bear arms. Talk show host Alex Jones yelled, "1776 will commence again." While he was raging against attempts to legislate his right to bear arms, he was also organizing a petition to have Piers Morgan deported because he spoke in favor of strict gun control laws. So apparently freedom to carry weapons trumps freedom of speech. Unless it's the guy with the guns who's speaking.
Wayne LaPierre, NRA crazy man with the inoffensive name, will brook absolutely no compromise, under any circumstance. Rather, he proposes armed guards and watch lists of the mentally ill, whose freedom also appears not to matter. If you drive a car you need a driver's license, but it is an act against freedom to require a gun owner to be licensed and on record.
According to a blistering Daily Show report, in 2007 Kansas Congressman Todd Tiahrt declared that we don't need any more protection from guns because the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms was on it 24/7. That's the Todd Tiahrt who rammed through measures preventing ATF from monitoring or enforcing gun laws. Oh, and the bill had the stamp of approval from the NRA.
While the anti-gun-control nuts are writhing and screeching, the parents of the murdered children are "urging" discussions about gun safety.
This may seem to be deja vu all over again, what with the right-wing-nuts driving the health care debate, making truly sensible, affordable health care impossible in this country.
And it would be hard not to point out that the side that is screaming about losing the freedom to carry a gun any-damn-where it wants is pretty often the side that feels the need to protect a women's fertilized egg from the women carrying it.
My point is that it is disheartening that the two most powerful components of the gun debate are the monied and the crazy. With the NRA -- the lobby of the arms industry -- fueling the paranoid, it becomes ever harder for the reasoned and moderate voices to weigh in. Leaving us with inadequate legislation and enforcement, and more deaths ready to be toted up.