It’s the laziest gun control argument there is; if you don’t support restricting the right to keep and bear arms, you must be okay with murder. It’s an intellectually dishonest and emotionally manipulative position, and it’s embraced by Cleveland Plain-Dealer columnist Brent Larkin in a new op/ed entitled, “Rejecting gun control is akin to condemning more kids to die” that argues opponents of gun control just don’t care much about human life.
Every member of Congress and of the Ohio legislature who opposes the modest notion of universal background checks should be locked in a room with their children and/or grandchildren and forced to repeatedly watch the recent advertisement produced for Sandy Hook Promise, the group designed to promote gun safety around children.
I think Brent Larkin should be locked in a room with the FBI crime stats for Colorado since 2013, when the state instituted “universal background checks” and has seen violent crime increase by 25% in the ensuing years. After he’s studied the numbers, we can pass him the crime stats for Washington State, which also put a universal background check law on the books several years ago and has seen crime rates continue to increase. Larkin wants politicians to watch an ad by a gun control group. I want him to look at the facts.
The people running our country have made a decision that will define them for the ages. To avoid angering the base, they will tolerate the slaughter of children in their classrooms.
That’s a reasonable conclusion one can draw from the refusal of President Donald Trump and the Republican-run Senate to offer nothing but insincere lip service to the mounting death toll from mass murders in schools, places of worship and other venues across the country.
It’s hard to have a dialogue with someone who accuses you of tolerating the murder of children. In Larkin’s mind, the issue is so simple. If you want to protect children, you must support gun control. In the real world, however, we know that these types of horrific attacks on our kids have taken place even when an “assault weapons ban” was in place. Would Larkin accuse Evan Todd of not caring about schoolkids? After all, Todd doesn’t support a gun ban or “universal background checks”, so he must be okay with tolerating kids getting shot, right?
Todd was shot himself when he was a student at Columbine High School in 1999. His life was forever changed, and he thought seriously about gun control for several years, but ultimately came to the conclusion that trying to ban our way to safety wasn’t going to be effective. Do the opinions and experiences of someone like Evan Todd matter at all to Brett Larkin, or is he only interested in crafting strawmen he can try to burn down? Larkin seems to believe there’s only one reason why politicians wouldn’t back the gun control laws he’s calling for.
There’s no worse fate than being purchased by the gun lobby and its acolytes. First they rob elected officials of their dignity, then their reputations.
Without ever firing a shot.
I’ve got news for Larkin. Gun control advocates are spending more money than gun groups to push their agenda. Does that mean anyone taking Bloomberg bucks has been purchased by the anti-gun lobby and its acolytes? Or does it just mean that Larkin’s argument is a cheap and ultimately unserious attempt to emotionally blackmail lawmakers, gun owners, and anybody else who doesn’t think his proposed solutions are the answer to just go along with whatever anti-gun activists want?