Thursday, December 03, 2015

Here's what we know ...

While the facts in yesterday's shooting in San Bernadino are still being compiled and assessed, there are some things we do know:
  1. In the United States, guns kill more people than AIDS, illegal drug overdoses, wars, and terrorism combined!
  2. Among the so-called "developed nations" the United States has more people killed by guns by far than any other.
  3. The guns used in yesterday's shootings -- and apparently in the vast majority of these mass shootings -- were obtained legally.
  4. In many states, you have to register in advance to vote, sometimes by as much as 30 days. Under federal law, you can buy a gun on the day you decide you want one.
  5. Federal law limits the amount pseudoephedrine (antihistamine) you can buy in a month.  Federal law says nothing about how many guns you can purchase in one transaction.  [Thanks to MSNBC for these last two examples.]
Do you feel stunned and powerless?  Is this overwhelming?  As I wrote yesterday, "There is a violence present in our society that should disgust us.  And we must choose whether that disgust will make us numb or make us act."  Here's something you can do:

You can call your Representative and Senators (there are 2 of them) and tell them that you cannot understand how they could possibly be against universal background checks and at least preventing peple who are on the Terrorist Watch List from purchasing guns.  (The Capitol Hotline is 202-224-3121; or you can reach out directly to those who are supposed to represent you.

I'll leave you with this final thought. On November 9th Neil deGrasse Tyson tweeted, "3,400:  Americans who have killed by terrorists since 2001.  3,400:  Americans who have been killed by household guns since five weeks ago."

Pax tecum,


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