The Parkland kids were probably feeling a little desperate. Their 15 minutes of fame was coming to an end, so they had to do something. They decided a bus tour was just the thing. Not only would it make a few national headlines at the start, but it would create local headlines all over the country.
Oh, and they could try and keep up the pressure on our right to keep and bear arms.
To their credit, they’re not just hitting friendly areas like New York, Massachusetts, or California. They’re also going to places like Texas. I’ll give them credit for that.
But they’re still wasting their time.
Students who survived the school shooting in Parkland, Florida, joined young activists from Texas in a series of panel discussions on gun control last week.
Their vision for gun violence prevention is in stark contrast with state lawmakers’ plans.
The Parkland students are on a national summer road tour with other young activists. Their goal is to keep the gun control conversation going, and get people who care about that issue to show up at the polls.
Cameron Kasky was a junior at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School when a former classmate entered his school and killed 17 people in February.
He said the “Never Again” movement he and his classmates created is not calling for a “national collection of guns,” just some restrictions to gun access.
“This is us taking a problem that has not been fixed and saying, surprisingly enough, if you look at history, not addressing a problem will not fix that problem,” Kasky said.
Much of the town hall in San Antonio focused on bringing change to a red state known for its pro-gun-rights politicians. Panelists talked about common arguments, and starting a dialogue about gun rights.
Here’s the problem with that. Where are they trying to start that dialogue? They’re starting it with people who already agree with them. Their bus tour involves setting up in places where the audience is mostly going to be made up of people who already support them.
Gun rights activists have little interest in attending, though some do thankfully.
Even then, there’s no real dialogue being opened. Of course, they don’t really want a dialogue. They aren’t interested in listening to the other side. Every time I’ve tried to engage people like that, I’m accused of wanting to see more people slaughtered in mass shootings which, as I’ve noted before, really pisses me off. However, it tells me that they don’t want a dialogue. They don’t want a discussion. They want to lecture.
Which is why few pro-gun activists will attend.
In other words, this entire bus tour is about preaching to the choir. They’re reaching out to supporters. They’re not actually reaching anyone who doesn’t already agree with them and hang on their every word like a pathetic little sycophant.
Which is what this is really about. They’re not going to accomplish anything, but they get to feel like they are because they see all their little foot soldiers who won’t accomplish anything either, but they can at least feel like they have.
Good job, kiddos.