On Tuesday we talked about guns and what to do about the spike in violent crime related to their use.
Sadly, we have to talk about it again because there’s been another shooting inside a movie theater just two weeks after the deadly one in Lafayette, Louisiana where two young women and the gunman were killed.
This latest one happened in Antioch, Tennessee, a suburb of Nashville.
This time the man was armed with a gun and a hatchet.
Police killed him too.
We are all talking about it again, but what about the people who can do something about it?
Will the people who actively block stricter background checks and gun legislation be talking about it tonight at the much touted GOP presidential debate in Cleveland?
Will they discuss how to keep people who shouldn’t have guns from getting them legally and illegally?
Will they be talking, not about the majority of citizens in this country who use guns safely and properly, but about those who open fire in movie theaters and schools and malls and military installations, the ones who should not pass background checks?
Will they discuss those who shoot and kill each other on the streets every single day and night because they have no respect for their own lives or for any human life?
So far, to my knowledge, none of the candidates is saying anything substantive on gun control, probably because it’s not an issue that appeals to their base.
But guess who’s not afraid of at least talking about the issue? Donald Trump.
Here’s what he told NBC back in July:
KATY TUR, NBC NEWS: “You’re for the Second Amendment. Do you have a gun?”
DONALD TRUMP: “I have a license to have a gun. Yes I do.”
NBC: “Do you use it? Gun ranges?”
DONALD TRUMP: “It is none of your business, it is really none of your business. I have a license to have a gun.”
NBC: “Gun control.”
DONALD TRUMP: “What are you talking about? Yes I have a gun and yes I have a permit for it.”
NBC: “Stronger background checks. What about that? Is there any steps that you would take to make it harder to get a gun in this country?”
DONALD TRUMP: “The problem is once you get into that you start getting into a situation, the slippery slope, where all of a sudden you are going to violate the Second Amendment. I don’t want to violate the Second Amendment. To me the Second Amendment is very important.”
After the gunman opened fire in Lafayette Trump did call the shooter a “sick” person and went on to say “This has nothing to do with guns. This has to do with the mentality of these people.”
A few days after the theater shooting in Louisiana, Governor and presidential hopeful Bobby Jindal said this on CNN:
“I’m a strong supporter of the second amendment. I’m not in favor of restricting the rights of law abiding citizens. But what we’ve done in Louisiana, we’ve actually strengthened the reporting of those that have been involuntarily committed into a mental health institution, those who have been subject to judges orders that they shouldn’t have guns to make sure that those records actually go into the national background data base.”
But according to The New Republic, Bobby Jindal, governor of my home state of Louisiana actually “worked to weaken the state’s already lax gun control by signing a wave of bills in 2013 and 2014,” broadening the “Stand Your Ground” law and allowing concealed weapons in places that serve alcohol.
Just a few days after the Louisiana shooting Ted Cruz released a video of himself wrapping bacon around the barrel of an assault style rifle, shooting the riffle and then him eating the bacon right off the barrel.
“Mmmm.. Machine gun bacon. Ha ha ha ha.
The other candidates have strong stances on guns, mostly allowing concealed firearms and generally opposing stricter gun control measures.
Most of them are not even mentioning the gun issue on their everyday stumps.
But with Americans under siege in many of our cities, the question of what to do about guns t should be one of, if not the first questions tonight right out of the gate.