Op-ed Laments GOP Not Backing Gun Control After Maine

AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty

No one is right about everything. We all know this. And yet, if you ask us if we’re right about our opinions on any given issue, we’ll say that we are, straight on down the line. If someone thinks they’re wrong on something, they don’t maintain that position out of intransigence. They change their minds and move on.


Which brings me to gun control.

In the wake of the shooting in Lewiston, Maine, the topic of gun control rears its ugly head once more. Never mind that the killer was a prohibited person or anything. No, that’s largely irrelevant.

Part of the problem, we’re told, is that Republican lawmakers aren’t rolling over and supporting anti-gun legislation.

Newly minted Republican House Speaker Mike Johnson responded to the horrific mass shooting in Lewiston, Maine – at least 18 dead and 13 injured – with the standard GOP pablum: “Prayer is appropriate in a time like this, that the evil can end and this senseless violence can stop.”

In the face of mass killings that occur with almost rhythmic frequency, prayer without action is as worthless as Johnson’s words. Moments later, the new speaker had the audacity to say: “Everyone wants this to end.”

Do they, Speaker Johnson? Because neither you nor your party have done or appear interested in doing a damn thing to protect Americans from an epidemic of gun violence that allows tragedies like the one in Maine to erupt.

Republicans offer prayers for end to ‘senseless violence’ then hug gun lobbyist

In an Oct. 17 social media post – just more than a week ago – you shared a photo of a yourself meeting with members of a pro-gun group: “It was great to catch up with the Women for Gun Rights representatives today to discuss the safeguarding of our Second Amendment rights.”

Yes, clearly the most important thing is preserving gun rights and not, you know, making sure guns aren’t in the hands of people like [name redacted], the Maine shooting suspect who, according to state police, spent two weeks in a mental health facility this past summer.


Except it was already illegal for the killer to own a firearm.

See, the author here makes a big deal about how Republicans refuse to support gun control as if it’s simply a foregone conclusion that gun control would prevent this.

Yet, in this case, it’s pretty clear it didn’t.

The killer was a prohibited person, yet he still got a gun. Maine’s “yellow flag” law, a measure intended to prevent precisely this kind of thing, also didn’t do a damn bit of good.

Republican lawmakers who value the Second Amendment see this.

So simply trying to guilt them into supporting gun control isn’t exactly productive. The author has this concept that everyone just knows gun control is good and right but refuses to support the legislation because of some insane reason. It makes it clear that he’s never even tried to listen to the gun-rights side of the debate.

If he did, he’d stop trying to act like Republicans just know gun control is good and right.

The truth is that if Republicans thought that way, they’d support it. However, the truth is that they believe no such thing.

As already noted, Lewiston was a failure of gun control, not grounds for it. The laws failed to keep a gun out of the hands of this nutbar and did no such thing. The system already in place broke down, as they generally do. We know that RAND looked at gun laws and found no evidence of most of them working. We know that much of gun control research is screwed up.


In short, no one is changing their minds on gun control because, despite the protestations of people like the author, there’s no reason for them to believe they’ve been getting it wrong all this time.

If there were, they’d probably change their mind to some degree or another. Since there’s not, well, here we are.

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