Bullets on The Ballot
From NPR News
- Week In Politics: Syria And The Colorado Recall--NPR
Audie Cornish talks with regular political commentators, E.J. Dionne of The Washington Post and the Brookings Institution and David Brooks with The New York Times. They discuss the latest on Syria and takeaways from recall elections in Colorado.
- Colorado Voters Recall Two Gun Control Backers--NPR
This week, voters in Colorado recalled two members of the state Legislature who had supported stricter gun control laws. Host Scott Simon talks to Colorado Senate President John Morse, one of those who lost his seat.
A State of Siege?
If there is any state that should know the reality of gun violence, it is Colorado. The Columbine shooting may have been an event that led to the Million Mom March. The recent Aurora theater shooting was one of the series of shootings that culminated with Newtown. So it was a bit of a surprise to see that two State Senators who were part of Colorado's efforts to toughen its gun laws were recalled by a co-ordinated campaign lead by the NRA.
From The Nation
- The Gun Control Debate and Our Civic Life -- The Nation
When one side of an election fight is led by conspiratorial maniacs with guns, it's hard for the good guys to win.
What Was The Aim?
Insurgents need to demonstrate their force. In Iraq and Afghanistan, they use IEDs and suicide bombers to show their power. America's insurrectionists, at least in Colorado, at least use the political process.
The recall seemed to have to no real purpose; even with the two Senators being recalled, Democrats still have a majority and there are no plans to repeal the law itself. The goal may have been similar to that of an assassination.
That was to send a message to legislators in other states. Efforts to pass restrictions on firearms at the federal level were stymied by procedure and the role of the money that the NRA, etc puts into campaigns. A state-by-state approach may be a better approach. The same week as the recall succeeded; California passed tough new restrictions and an effort in Missouri to nullify federal laws was blocked. What happened in Colorado may be seen as a warning to legislators in other states to not mess with the NRA. Much like a mobster or Taliban Warlord.
Bridging The Gap
On the September 13 edition of All Things Considered, E.J Dionne spoke of an "enthusiasm gap" on the side of those who wish to see America's firearms laws more like the rest of the Industrialized World. To me, incidents like Colorado show not an enthusiasm gap" but an organizational gap.
Groups like CeaseFire, the Coalition to Stop Violence and the Violence Policy Center need to stop going from one mass shooting to another. We see this all the time, a mass shooting sparks a renewed call for restrictions, but in a few months fades. Perhaps what needs to be done is to take a look at the daily toll that guns take in America. The efforts of US Gun Violence to do just that may be an approach to take. If not, we'll be sitting and waiting for the next massacre.