I'm not going to comment on the specifics of the most recent tragedy in Connecticut. I think there are plenty of others who have expressed the appropriate sentiments and outrage, and I can't really think of anything more profound to say about the senseless massacre of innocent people, especially children. However I strongly agree with those who argue that we it past time to at least have a debate on gun control.
We all know the Republican arguments and and framing on guns. The right to have a gun is fundamental to protect our liberty. Guns are an integral part of American culture.
I have personal experience with that last point.
My relatives who live in the rural part of Kentucky are gun enthusiasts. They regularly go out and hunt just about anything that moves. One of my cousins has even traveled to other parts of the U.S. to hunt animals that he can't find in Kentucky. His wife, who is from the Louisville area, once said that he would love it if he could shoot fish instead of using a rod and reel to catch them.
In fact, my Aunt and Uncle gave gun ammo to their grandchildren for Christmas. The kids were so excited that they went out in the back of the home and began using the ammo that day. One of the grand kids has already been out turkey hunting at the tender age of seven. Got his own rifle to use, and my Aunt was very proud that her grandson bagged himself a turkey the first time out.
Recently, I attended a wedding for my Cousin's son. It was a great ceremony, but I noticed something a little odd on the table for the wedding gifts. I wasn't entirely sure, but I turned and asked another one of my Cousin's, "Is that a sniper rifle on the wedding gift table?" Sure enough, it was a sniper rifle.
Now, you are probably saying to yourself, "Lord, those folks would not be amenable to a gun control debate." And you would be correct. In fact, I don't even try to bring the subject up because it would be a huge waste of time and effort.
Why? Because my relatives also believe that Obama is a communist, the War in Iraq justified, and global warming a hoax. In other words, my relatives are political extremists.
Unfortunately, these are the same people that Democrats are petrified of alienating with a debate about gun control. Democrats think, "If we don't mention subject X , we won't piss off the voters who disagree with us." Democrats never even got out of the starting gate with my relatives. I don't think they have ever voted for a Democrat, even by accident.
But I'm part of American culture also, and I don't own a gun. Nor do I have a burning desire to go out and get a gun or go hunting. I think that people should be allowed to purchase guns though, but I believe that not everyone is entitled to a gun. Certain people should never be allowed to purchase guns legally -the mentally ill and criminals for starters. As for the type of guns that or ammo that can be sold, since when do hunters need assault weapons to hunt deer? Have deer and other wild animals suddenly evolved armor to protect themselves from armor piercing bullets?
I don't think so.
Yet, sadly, Democrats have run in terror from the mere mention of gun control. When Democrats abandon political debate, you let the most extreme voices from the right dominate and declare victory.