The horrific mass murder in Aurora, Colorado during a showing of the latest Batman movie has, as has been the case so many times in the past, caused politicians to engage in empty platitudes. President Obama called for a period of reflection and Mitt Romney asked for national unity. All well and good but just words when what is called for are deeds.
No truly sane nation would find logic in the right of its citizens to own automatic weapons, multiple automatic weapons. No truly sane nation would view the ” right to bear arms” as meaning perfunctory background checks or purchases of deadly weapons at gun shows. No truly sane nation would allow a powerful interest group, in this case the National Rifle Association, to so control the national debate on gun ownership that any hint of rational restriction is viewed as un-American. Remember I said sane nation.
What this nation needs are political leaders who address the senseless gun violence in this country rather than be intimidated by the gun lobby. Few Americans would deny the right of Americans to own a gun for the purpose of protecting their family and home from danger. Few Americans would deny hunters the right to enjoy a sport that requires ownership of guns. Few Americans would condemn the store owner from shooting back at a robber intent on doing bodily harm. Most Americans are for gun ownership, but most Americans are not for automatic weapons in the hands of crazy people or someone with a huge grudge against society.
The only good that might come out of this terrible night of killing is that a new issue has been added to the presidential campaign and it will be interesting to see which of the candidates actually promises to do something about automatic weapons, unlicensed purchases at gun shows, and useless background checks.
It is proper that Obama and Romney are taking a day off from campaigning and offering words of solace to devastated families, but tomorrow and the next day and the next day the vast majority of sane Americans deserve real action to rein in gun ownership that has nothing to do with safety, hunting or protection. Words are OK at this time, but actions speak louder than words.