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I’ve been kind of a soft gun safety advocate, but that now has ended.  The stunning cowardice and lack of respect for the will of the American People that was shown in the U.S. Senate this week has spurred me to take on gun safety as a one of my primary political issues. Like most the issues I advocate for it is going to be a long up-hill fight, but that can’t be a consideration when 30,000 of my fellow citizens die every year from guns and another 100,000 are injured. Enough is enough.

But being an activist means taking action and for all that writing here is emotionally satisfying it is not going to actually change things in the meat-space of the real world; that require actual action and I have a plan I intend to follow.

It is pretty simple. Every week day I am going to go to my local papers websites and do a search for gun violence. I will take all the links I find and then send them in an e-mail to my Representative in the House and my Senators.

The intent is to make sure that they understand the plague of gun violence in our nation. Any one day will not have much of an effect but as time goes by it will build up and make it clear to them what the vast majority of the people already know, our status quo is unacceptable and doing nothing about it is intolerable.

Now, it is true that the Rep and Senators are not very likely to see these e-mails, but their staff will and, hopefully, it will put the need for change into the minds of the people around the elected officials. That is the first step towards getting them to actively support the much needed and very modest changes that were denied an up or down vote in the Senate this week.

If you want a safer nation, a nation where all gun sales are checked to make sure that the buyer is not on the list of people legally denied the right to bear and own arms then I ask you to join me in taking ten minutes a day to stand up for what you want.

My Senators and Representative are on record as supporting these changes, but they are still going to hear about it from me every week day until things change. It is not because I think they might change their minds, but more to make sure that this issue does not fade just because the horror of Sandy Hook recedes in to the mists of time.
All this might not have a lot of impact, but this is going to be a fight for every inch of ground. If it moves the issue forward one inch then it will be worth it to me.

So, Kossacks, I am asking, what is change worth to you? Is it worth a few minutes a day to try to reduce the amount of carnage our misguided gun laws are causing? If so please join me in making sure that our elected officials understand how bad things are away from the hallowed halls of power.

The floor is yours.

Originally posted to Something the Dog Said on Fri Apr 19, 2013 at 06:42 AM PDT.

Also republished by Repeal or Amend the Second Amendment (RASA), Shut Down the NRA, and notRKBA.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tips? Flames? (12+ / 0-)

    Most importantly your action to make the nation a safer place for all of us?

    I will not shop on Thanksgiving nor before 10am on the following Friday out of solidarity with retail workers! Please do the same.

    by Something the Dog Said on Fri Apr 19, 2013 at 06:41:59 AM PDT

  •  I had a similar thought... (3+ / 0-)

    and even though it would be a huge effort, I'd email/tweet the articles to every senator who voted against the amendments.  

    If we worked together, we could do this.  We could even start a Against Gun Violence Community here at DK to collect the articles so that many others can also email/tweet them.  Too ambitious?

    As a start, here are the twitter handles of all senators who voted "nay" to expand background checks:

        Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) -- @SenAlexander
        Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.) -- @KellyAyotte
        Sen. John Barrasso (R-Wyo.) -- @SenJohnBarrasso
        Sen. Max Baucus (D-Mont.) -- @MaxBaucus
        Sen. Mark Begich (D-Alaska) -- @SenatorBegich
        Sen. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.) -- @RoyBlunt
        Sen. John Boozman (R-Ark.) -- @JohnBoozeman
        Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.) -- @SenatorBurr
        Sen. Saxby Chambliss (R-Ga.) -- @SaxbyChambliss
        Sen. Dan Coats (R-Ind.) -- @SenDanCoats
        Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) -- @TomCoburn
        Sen. Thad Cochran (R-Miss.) -- @SenThadCochran
        Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) -- @SenBobCorker
        Sen. Jon Cornyn (R-Texas) -- @JohnCornyn
        Sen. Mike Crapo (R-Idaho) -- @MikeCrapo
        Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) -- @SenTedCruz
        Sen. Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.) -- @SenatorEnzi
        Sen. Deb Fischer (R-Neb.) -- @SenatorFischer
        Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) -- @JeffFlake
        Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) -- @GrahamBlog
        Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) -- @ChuckGrassley
        Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) -- @SenOrrinHatch
        Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D-N.D.) -- @SenatorHeitkamp
        Sen. Dean Heller (R-Nev.) -- @SenDeanHeller
        Sen. John Hoeven (R-N.D.) -- @SenJohnHoeven
        Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.) -- @jiminhofe
        Sen. Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.) -- @SenatorIsakson
        Sen. Mike Johanns (R-Neb.) -- @Mike_Johanns
        Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) -- @SenRonJohnson
        Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah) -- @SenMikeLee
        Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) -- @McConnellPress
        Sen. Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) -- @JerryMoran
        Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) -- @lisamurkowski
        Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) -- @SenRandPaul
        Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) -- @robportman
        Sen. Mark Pryor (D-Ark.) -- @SenMarkPryor
        Sen. Jim Risch (R-Idaho) -- @SenatorRisch
        Sen. Pat Roberts (R-Kan.) -- @SenPatRoberts
        Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) -- @marcorubio
        Sen. Tim Scott (R-S.C.) -- @SenatorTimScott
        Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) -- @SenatorSessions
        Sen. Richard Shelby (R-Ala.) -- @SenShelbyPress
        Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.) -- @SenJohnThune
        Sen. David Vitter (R-La.) -- @DavidVitter
        Sen. Roger Wicker (R-Miss.) -- @SenatorWicker

    What it is, is up to us. ~ Howard Rheingold

    by madame defarge on Fri Apr 19, 2013 at 06:58:53 AM PDT

  •  Can we call it respect? Gun respect or respect (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    madame defarge

    for guns.

    Because gun safety has excuses and degrees. If your gun goes off accidentally and causes no damage, it didn't seriously break the safety horizon. Nothing happened right. But a gun going off by accident shatters the gun respect horizon not because of what did or did not happen, but because the gun toter did not KNOW what was going to happen.

    A person who respects guns handles guns differently than a person who thinks they are safe with guns.

    We are a long way from legislating that people treat their guns with respect due a deadly weapon.

    See Katie Couric's story from yesterday about the mother of the little girl who was killed by celebratory gun fire. Blair didn't die right away and donated her organs. Blair's mother listened to her heart beating in the chest of the recipient on the Katie Couric Show yesterday.

    The people who shot the celebratory gun, (how is that even a statute!), were given celebratory sentences. Two were given misdemeanors which will not mess up their ability to own guns.

    Why are guns regulated like video games?

    guns are fun v. hey buddy, watch what you are doing -- which side are you on?

    by 88kathy on Fri Apr 19, 2013 at 07:10:43 AM PDT

  •  Group on facebook (4+ / 0-)

    that I've joined is
    www.facebook.com/MomsDemandAction

    I also joined the specific group for North Dakota, because that's where we need to build support so that Heidi Heitcamp will feel the public support to vote for the gun control legislation. She's one of the few dems that voted against it, but she's in a very right wing state and we need her there to keep our majority in Congress:

    www.facebook.com/MomsDemandActionND

    The first group has over 90,000 likes, the North Dakota group has only 157. We have a long way to go there.

    Shop Liberally this holiday season at Kos Katalog

    by JamieG from Md on Fri Apr 19, 2013 at 07:13:12 AM PDT

  •  Email is convenient, but paper is more effective (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    denig, Something the Dog Said

    I know it is an expense, but the impact is significant.

    I copy and mail Tom Begnal's "Another Day in the (Gun Crazy) U.S.A." every week to my Senator (Feinstien, who is already on the bandwagon).

    I believe that if more folks did this, our voices would not be so easily ignored.

    I've written before on this; emptying a full email inbox can be done with a fingertip. A laundry cart full of letters is not so easily dismissed.

    If we are going to live at the speed of code, we need to remember the stillness of eternity. -- dharmasyd

    by Darryl House on Fri Apr 19, 2013 at 07:40:15 AM PDT

    •  But it does not allow for easy to follow links (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Darryl House

      that is the point. That they can go to any of the stories and see what is happening.

      I will not shop on Thanksgiving nor before 10am on the following Friday out of solidarity with retail workers! Please do the same.

      by Something the Dog Said on Fri Apr 19, 2013 at 08:11:33 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Do you really think they will? (0+ / 0-)

        I am certainly not trying to be argumentative, your call to action is important and every voice counts -- thank you for this.

        Tom's daily diary is effective because it is a summary that emphasizes the volume of gun violence incidents with enough detail to convey their absurdity and horror and not verbose enough to cause the audience to lose interest.

        The purpose of sending information and opinion to lawmakers is the same for citizens as it is for any lobby. We're not trying to change their minds, but to change their vote on critical issues.

        My intent is to let Congress know we're watching, and to let them know why. The Senate has thumbed its nose at me, at you, at 90% of their constituents. It infuriates me that our will is so blatantly ignored and I am not going to make it convenient for them to do so.

        If we are going to live at the speed of code, we need to remember the stillness of eternity. -- dharmasyd

        by Darryl House on Fri Apr 19, 2013 at 09:14:42 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Wack a mole is the strategy they are using for (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Something the Dog Said

    gun regulations. Anything that is proposed is shot down because it isn't something else. We have to get a strategy to fight the wack a mole strategy. This is the same strategy the RkBAers use here.

    guns are fun v. hey buddy, watch what you are doing -- which side are you on?

    by 88kathy on Fri Apr 19, 2013 at 08:13:36 AM PDT

    •  Agreed. But I look at this as an (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      88kathy

      "Everything, all the time" job. We should persue all avenues at the same time. It is as important to make sure that there is a receptive audience as it is to have a winning argument.

      On the issue of whack a mole, what we should do is not play. No solution will be the all around fix, but rather every time we legislate we should be making progress towards less death and injury.

      Then the question becomes, "Why are you against less Americans dying or being injured?". That puts the absolutists on defense instead of offense. Which is the only way to win.

      I will not shop on Thanksgiving nor before 10am on the following Friday out of solidarity with retail workers! Please do the same.

      by Something the Dog Said on Fri Apr 19, 2013 at 08:27:02 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  And we need to call them out on the wack a mole (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Something the Dog Said

        game. Tell them they can't get away with it.

        The RkBAers here taught me that lesson well. They play the game constantly in tag teams and then deny it and blame the others. They are a sick slick group. I wouldn't have believed they even existed 5 months ago.

        guns are fun v. hey buddy, watch what you are doing -- which side are you on?

        by 88kathy on Fri Apr 19, 2013 at 08:39:47 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Yeah, I don't get them at all. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          88kathy

          The way they go at this issue doesn't make any sense to me.

          I constantly ask them what compelling social good justifies this level of access to weapons and the kinds of weapons that are available and none have been willing to even try to give an answer.

          I've lost a couple of friends over this issue including Kestrel 9000. I told them I'd continue to challenge them on this issue until they could provide a logical answer and they basically told me to fuck off rather than even try.

          Personally I think they have this Red Dawn fantasy that the government is going to come for them some day. Which doesn't make any sense to me. Look at what is arrayed against the Boston Bombing suspects and you can see that no amount of guns or ammo is going to prevent the government from taking you into custody if they want to do it.

          I will not shop on Thanksgiving nor before 10am on the following Friday out of solidarity with retail workers! Please do the same.

          by Something the Dog Said on Fri Apr 19, 2013 at 09:01:51 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  I have taken to using Gotcha in my subject line (0+ / 0-)

            when they start telling me to fuck off. I wish I would have done that from the beginning.

            guns are fun v. hey buddy, watch what you are doing -- which side are you on?

            by 88kathy on Fri Apr 19, 2013 at 09:09:02 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  Presumably you are going to highlight those (0+ / 0-)

    incidents where proposed legislation or enforcement of existing laws would not have altered the outcome. Recipients surely will.

    •  Actually no. My full intent is to show the (0+ / 0-)

      level of the problem.

      The point is that it is unexcusable for Congress to fail to act when 30,000 people a year die and 100,000 are injured.

      I will not shop on Thanksgiving nor before 10am on the following Friday out of solidarity with retail workers! Please do the same.

      by Something the Dog Said on Fri Apr 19, 2013 at 11:35:28 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Except it doesn't, in any meaningful way. (0+ / 0-)

        It might also reinforce various stereotypes regarding, inter alia,  criminal activity, dangerous cities and venues, and so on. If your lists also don't include 'violence' in self-defense, your bias will be evident.  

        My full intent is to show the level of the problem.
  •  Love it... (0+ / 0-)

    You always come up with clever means to have elected officials take notice.  Bravo!

    "There is only one force in the nation that can be depended upon to keep the government pure and the governors honest, and that is the people themselves.-Thomas Jefferson

    by greenchiledem on Sat Apr 20, 2013 at 09:00:02 AM PDT

    •  Thanks! Now all it takes it me and about (0+ / 0-)

      1000 others to follow through and we can see if it works!

      I will not shop on Thanksgiving nor before 10am on the following Friday out of solidarity with retail workers! Please do the same.

      by Something the Dog Said on Mon Apr 22, 2013 at 06:59:03 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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