Politics Magazine

Will Trump Will Actually Do Anything About Gun Violence ?

Posted on the 23 February 2018 by Jobsanger
Will Trump Will Actually Do Anything About Gun Violence ? (Caricature of Donald Trump is by DonkeyHotey.)
Donald Trump held a "listening session" on Wednesday to hear from people angry about the mass shootings in this country (although sadly, he had to make himself a note to remember to be empathetic to the victims). I doubt he was really listening though, because he seemed to have already made up his mind about what he wants to do (or says he wants to do).
Trump made three suggestions -- change the age to buy an assault weapon, make background checks better, and arm teachers and school employees. I doubt he was serious about any of these suggestions, and considering how many times he has lied during his first year in office (more than 2,000 times), I'm not going to hold my breath until any change is made.
The first suggestion is silly. Making people wait until they are 21 to buy a military-style assault weapon will accomplish nothing. These weapons need to be outlawed -- for people of any age. They have no purpose except to kill large numbers of people as fast as possible. It won't pass though, because the NRA opposes it, and they own most congressional Republicans.
The same goes for background checks. We do need background checks for anyone trying to buy a firearm (or is being given a firearm), and about 90% of the public (including most rank-and-file NRA members) support that. But the NRA leadership opposes it -- and both Trump and Congress are not about to do anything the NRA leaders don't want. This was just a BS lie from Trump (like his promise to protect DACA Dreamers, his promise to give most tax cuts to the middle class, and his promise to provide great health insurance for all Americans). He didn't mean it, and we won't see it.
He might actually try to implement his third suggestion -- to arm teachers and other school employees. That's something the NRA would support, and congressional Republicans could pat themselves on the back for and believe they have accomplished something. But it's a bad idea. I can see some teacher losing his/her cool and shooting some student (probably unarmed) because they "feared for their life".
Trump said the shooters would avoid schools if they thought teachers had guns, because he said the shooters are cowards and don't want to be shot. That's stupid. Almost all of the shooters EXPECT to be killed (and kill themselves if others don't do it). More guns won't change this. It will just make our schools more dangerous for everyone (teachers and students).
Arming teachers won't do much to stop mass shootings, because mass shootings happen everywhere (concerts, theaters, parking lots, churches, etc.). Are we going to arm everyone everywhere? The right would like us to think that more guns means more safety, but that's simply not true. More guns just means more opportunity for nuts to commit mass shootings.
Trump, and right-wingers, also want to talk about mental illness and video games. Those are not the primary causes of mass shootings. Other developed nations have mental illness and the same proliferation of video games, but do not have the horror of mass shootings that the United States has (about one every day). Why not? We let our nuts have any kind of weapon and as much ammunition they want -- other countries don't.
We do need to take action to stop both the number of mass shootings and the number of gun deaths in this country -- and while we may not be able to completely eliminate them, we could significantly reduce them (just as other countries have done). And we could do it without violating our Constitution. But don't expect Trump to do anything about it.
If you think Trump will do anything, then you have been conned by him again.

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