Monday, June 13, 2016

No Thoughts, No Prayers

I have nothing. There are no words. What could anyone say that wasn't said after the last mass shooting, or the one before, or the one before. There is nothing to be said.

Except that we all have blood on our hands. Because we, as a society, have opted to accept mass murder as just one of those things that happen every so often and can't be avoided. Like hurricanes or earthquakes. And it's not just the obvious offenders. Not just the slavering jackals of the NRA and its sister gun fetish groups.
And it's not just the politicians who cravenly cower before the gun lobby lest they lose the votes of the supposed "moderates."
Not even the right-wing politicians who wholly, eagerly embrace the insanity of gun culture. Who decided that a military-grade assault rifle was the new flag lapel pin, the new de rigueur accessory for proving one's "real America" bona fides.

Not even the supposedly pro-gun-control President Obama who proposed no meaningful gun regulations after Aurora, or Virginia Tech, not even after a sitting Congresswoman from his own party was shot in the head. It took the slaughter of small children in Connecticut for him to even propose the weak tea gun laws that he did, which of course died on Capitol Hill.

No, it's all of us, because we allowed it. When our state governments expanded open carry "rights," we did not vote them out. When Congress refused to close the gun show loophole, we did not start recall proceedings. When Washington allowed the assault rifle ban to expire, we did not take to the streets demanding its reinstatement.

Every time some monster mows down innocent Americans, we take too Facebook and change our profile pic. We log on to Twitter and re-tweet the hashtag naming the latest city to suffer beedless bloodshed. And we send "thoughts and prayers," which do nothing. Why are we not flooding into the National Mall? Why are we not surrounding the Capitol building demanding change? We now change is possible. Australia gave us the blueprint twenty years ago. But instead, we've learned to numb ourselves, to shrug it off, to accept the spectre of looming violence as inevitable. No other country in the world does this. THESE SLAUGHTERS ONLY HAPPEN IN THE USA. And, as a society, we've chosen to do nothing.

So I don't want to hear any more "thoughts and prayers." They do nothing. It's worse than nothing, because it's a way of pretending that you've done something. And I especially don't want to hear "thoughts and prayers" from Congressmen and Senators and governors and other people who are in a position to actually do something. It's the worst kind of hypocrisy. It's like spitting in the face of the victims and their families if you personally had a chance to vote to keep lunatics from having the ability to slaughter large numbers of people and you chose to side with the grim reaper.
So fuck you, Paul Ryan. Fuck you, Marco Rubio, Fuck you Gov. Rick Scott and Debbie Wasserman Schultz. There's a special place in Hell for all of you, right next to Omar Mateen.