02/14/2018 by syrbal-labrys
“What’s on your mind?” asks WordPress? Blood. Blood, guts, pain, suffering as seen in Las Vegas last fall. That is what is on my mind. That is why I spent most of my day yesterday in Olympia, our state capital. We went to talk to our state representatives – a Mr. Barkis and Mr. Wilcox and our state senator, a Ms. Randi Becker about banning Bump Stocks. You see, these devices affixed to semi-automatic weapons are what allowed the Killer I Shall Not Dignify By Naming to shoot up a music venue in Las Vegas, killing dozens and injuring hundreds.
So banning these devices is a relatively pain-free way to possibly save hundreds of lives without in any way impeding people’s much shouted about rights to own weaponry. So my husband and I went; we were the only ones visiting the three Republican legislators from our little red district 2. We told the legislative aides of two, and Mr. Barkis himself, how we were both veterans. Both experienced with gun use, in fact that our family owns guns. We told him how horrified we were that civilians might have to face battlefield grade hazard, injury, and death at our own state’s many outdoor music venues because some man could “snap” and easily obtain a bump stock and kill a bunch of people.
Mr. Barkis told me that just banning this device wouldn’t help us understand the “big picture.” To show me how imminently reasonable he was, he told me that “fully automatic rifles are rightly banned.” I asked him if it didn’t follow therefore that something that rendered a weapon fully automatic should be banned as well. He agreed, and then his face froze in shock and he fled back to House Chambers saying he was all out of time. I won’t lie (as he did), I wanted to laugh aloud at his slip into real logic. Since his argument was a very smelly red herring.
Rep. Wilcox did not meet us. His aide came out in the hallway and listened to us without taking notes. The utter lack of “give a shit” was very obvious.
Senator Becker’s aide was very, very kind. She took us into his nicely appointed office and listened sympathetically, although also not taking notes. While that told us about everything we feared was true, we asked for feedback from the senator. Then today? Another aide called me to say Sen. Becker voted “No” on the bump stock ban because “the real problem is mental illness and banning bump stocks would not fix that because those are easy to make anyhow.”
Seriously, Senator? You know, to say, as we said “This is not the only or best solution but it is a start that could stop desperate people from doing desperate deadly things,” and to basically get a reply that says, “No, we have to cure mental illness first.” is a kind of nuclear mixture of a red herring and straw man argument. Or as us rational, reasonable people call it “bullshit.”
Imagine, dear citizens, if you took a child running a 104 degree fever to a major medical center. The doctor agrees with your fears that your child is in danger and may have a terrible, possibly incurable illness. So you say, “Can we at least get this fever down, Doc?”
And the doctor says, “Oh, heaven’s NO! We have to find the cure for the disease first.”
Or, to put it another way for the Red State crowd: imagine how pissed YOU would all be if some Democrat was to say about an ISIL terrorist event, “Well, you know, we do need to look at the big picture here. IS this terrorism, or just badly warped religion? Perhaps we should let religious authorities deal with this aberration so we can fully understand it”.
Would that “ride” well with you? Well, now you know how the utter nut-enabling drivel flowing from Barkis/Wilcox/Becker lips sounds to me.
So, second district? I want you to keep this all in mind, regardless of your political party affiliation. Because, heavens forfend, but IF someone in our state uses a bump stock in a moment of mental desperation to kill concert or theater goers, or law enforcement agents? Just remember, first let’s cure mental illness instead of getting the tools of murder out of the hands of the asylum’s inmates.