It’s past time to ‘politicize’ gun violence

There are not going to be anymore post-slaughter truces.
We didn’t wait until everyone was buried this time.
Some will accuse us of “politicizing” mass shootings when we should be quiet out of respect for the latest massacre victims.
But that strategy to silence our newspaper or anyone else who criticizes the gun lobby and their lackeys in Congress is not going to work any longer after mass shootings.
Because all too often the public’s and our political leaders’ attention shifts to another crisis and we are just left to wonder if we’ll ever do something.
Many believe if America was ever going to do something it would have done it after the Newtown carnage that killed 20 first-graders — 6- and 7-year-olds — and six adults.
That may be true yet, but today we call on Congress and the Legislature to end this horrific status quo.
Yes, we know. While our country has been consumed by gun violence our Legislature has been hard at work expanding the “right” to carry concealed firearms almost anywhere.
Not to mention allowing for anyone to park their gun and their vehicle in lots despite the property owner’s concern. An employer may not even bar employees from keeping guns in their vehicle at work.
Earlier, this year yet another bill to provide for carrying firearms on college and university campuses was narrowly tabled in a Senate committee.
As for Congress, the U.S. House of Representatives did pass two significant measures in late February to broaden the federal background-check system for buying guns.
However, Senate President Mitch McConnell has steadfastly refused to call a vote on them since. The president also signaled he would veto the bills in the unlikely event they reached the White House.
However, that was then. Though Congress is on its August recess, when it returns to work expanded background checks and “red flag” laws will be at the top of its agenda.
It also appears when the Legislature convenes in January it will also be working on a “red flag” law which is a reasonable step to curb gun violence,
Though these laws vary, they usually allow for a court to approve the temporary removal of firearms from someone who is a threat to himself or others.
Legislation to expand background checks and we suspect other gun control measures will probably be introduced then, too.
Few, if anyone, expects our lawmakers in Washington, D.C., or Charleston to do much of anything on gun violence in the coming months.
However, we urge the public to target their response and vote accordingly in 2020 for candidates who did or will do something.
We are not helpless and we cannot surrender to gun violence.

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