Killing Fields: National Rifle Association and Politicians Aid and Abet Massacres

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[Speaking Trtuth To Power]

Lori Alhadeff wants action. CNN screenshot.

Wednesday’s Valentine’s Day school shooting massacre—perpetrated by a 19-year-old gunman, armed with a military-style assault weapon—which took the lives of 17 students and school personnel from the Majory Stoneman Douglas High School, in Parkland, Florida is the latest episode of domestic mass murder in America.

Some, including President Trump, are now lambasting the FBI for failing to connect the dots that could’ve stopped 19-year-old Nikolas Cruz’s murderous rampage. Mr. Cruz’s alleged behavior, before this tragedy, should’ve been seen as a screaming plea for help.

Where was the intervention from the other adults who witnessed Cruz’s bizarre behavior?

While taking this opportunity to attack the FBI, President Trump is avoiding the gun-control discussion. Trump gave meaningless lip-serving talk about “prayers” and “condolences” for those who lost loved one and friends. Does this president have any credibility, speaking on violence, when he can’t muster sympathy for wives who say they suffered from domestic violence at the hands of former White House staff secretary Rob Porter?

In the aftermath of this horrific incident of gun violence, brought on, in large part, by America’s glorification of guns, we again witness hypocritical politicians who talk about the “rule of law,” while they do nothing to stop these mass murders.

This year, there have been 18 incidents where shots have been fired inside schools. Why have American schools become “killing fields,” where the disgruntled and deranged use military-style weapons to end the lives of so many in instant devastation?

Mr. Trump, and Republicans like House Speaker Paul Ryan, while saying nothing about gun-control, have targeted the alleged mental health of the shooter as a diversion. Yet, statistics tell us those exposed to domestic violence are more prone to become murderously violent than the mentally abused. According to the American Psychiatric Association, people with serious mental illness account for just one percent of America’s mass shootings.

However, according to research organization, Everytown For Gun Safety, in 54 percent of America’s mass shootings the perpetrators often killed their intimate partners or family members. Between “2009 to 2016 there have been 156 mass shootings—incidents in which four or more people have been shot and killed, not including the shooter.”

848 people were killed in these shootings.

It’s clear then that domestic abusers are more violence prone than the mentally ill. Yet, in some cases, where mental illness is a factor, lax laws would not have prevented them from purchasing a gun. For example, in Florida, Republican Governor Rick Scott is against a law which allows doctors to ask mentally unstable persons if they own a gun.

In the wake of this shooting, Trump and the Republicans are doing what they always do after these mass murder shootings: absolutely nothing. We get specious speeches about the Second Amendment and the, supposed, individual gun rights the Founding Fathers are said to have given Americans.

The lies and mythological surrounding the reasons for the enacting of the Second Amendment—adopted on December 15, 1791—is used conveniently to protect the incestuous relationship between Republicans and their NRA gun lobby sugar-daddies, who fill their pockets with blood money.

Truthfully, the Framers of the Second Amendment never granted individual gun rights to citizens—outside of their involvement in the “Militia,” that the Second Amendment talks about. The Second Amendment was a tool used by America’s Slaveholding planter-class to arm White militias.

These “Founding Father” Slave owners were fearful the 1804 successful Revolution led by enslaved Africans in Haiti would come to America and threaten their ungodly profits. The Second Amendment was utilized to maintain Slavery and Black oppression, by empowering poor Whites with guns rights—within militias. Therefore, the Second Amendment’s opening clause was worded to read “A well-regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State.”

The Framers primary concern was to arm state militias— known as “Slave Patrollers.” Their intent wasn’t to benevolently bestow unfettered gun rights to citizens.

However, Republicans skillfully use this false history about the Second Amendment to conceal the fact that: they will not act on gun control measures. Republicans have sold their souls to the NRA, and the military industrial complex machine.

What kind of political policy-makers, are these people in Congress, who care more about these gun manufacturing merchants of death than regular Americans?

It will take more than the anguish of those who lose loved ones to gun violence to force Congress to act.

Lori Alhadeff, whose 14-year-old daughter, Alyssa, was killed in the shooting, made an angry appeal for action to President Trump. “President Trump, we need action, we need change,” she said. “Get these guns out of the hands of these young kids and get these guns off the streets.”

Unfortunately, this president, and the Republican Party, will do nothing on the gun control issue—unless, the voters punish them, at the poles, into action. Too much NRA money is involved. In America, doesn’t profit nearly always take political priority over the well-being of people?

These mass murders continue because the firearms industry contributes $33 billion a year to the American economy—and the NRA spends $3 million on lobbying political policy-makers on Capitol Hill in addition to the hundreds of millions through the years in campaign contributions. There are some 10, 500 gun manufacturers in America, reportedly, a significant amount of them started in the last 20 years. And, according to the National Shooting Sports Foundation, some 220,000 Americans are employed in the gun industry—where employment has risen by 10 percent, since 2008.

Mr. Cruz was expelled from this school, where on Valentine’s Day—which is supposed to be a day of love—he slaughtered 17 humans. Obviously, Cruz was a troubled kid. Among his varied problems was the recent loss of his adoptive mother. Did anyone from a social service agency intervene to help Cruz?

There are many questions we should be asking, including: why should a 19-year-old be able to buy an AR-15 assault rifle? Isn’t it insane Cruz would’ve likely been unable to buy a bottle of beer—because the legal age for buying alcohol is 21—but was able to easily buy this assault weapon? Do Americans think it’s alright to allow kids to buy guns at the age of 18, while restricting them from drinking alcohol until their 21?

In the wake of these shootings, we often hear politicians condemning violence. But America has always used violence as a primary means of conflict resolutions. America glorifies warfare in movies, tv shows, video games, etc.

From the beginning of this nation, toy-guns have been one of the main toys Americans purchase for boys. In tragic cases—such as that of 12-year-old Tamir Rice—Black kids have been shot dead by police while playing with these toys. What message is America sending to males who have been reared with guns as a sacred symbol of American manhood?

On Capitol Hill, in foreign policy relations, American politicians are often threatening “hostile” countries with military warfare—as a first resort. Oftentimes, politicians who argue for restrain and diplomacy, in dealings with these countries, are characterized as weak.

Also, what should we make of the fact that: America, by far, is the world’s leading exporter of arms? Lockheed Martin, Boeing and Raytheon are leading global arms exporters. America’s military spending, in 2015, accounted for 54 percent of America’s discretionary spending.

Domestically, violence is always acceptable in matters where police kill Blacks. The Florida massacre, has activated the tongues of Democrats, like Connecticut Senator Chris Murphy. Why don’t we get speeches, from Democrats, regarding racial police murder?

Recently, former Virginia policeman, and Army veteran, Stephen Mader, was awarded $175,000 for being fired—after deciding not to shoot armed 23-year-old African-American R. J Williams. Mader tried to reason with Williams, whom he sensed as more suicidal than homicidal—instead of shooting him to death, as two other responding officers then did.

Sadly, violence continues to be as “American as apple pie.” Until Americans are truly honest about the deeply violent nature of this nation, meaningful change on gun violence will remain unattainable.

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