Local Voter Torn Between Democrats’ Plan To Reduce Gun Violence, And Republicans’ Plan To Do Nothing

(Picture courtesy of Susanne Nilsson, of the Non-Violence sculpture at the Headquarters of the United Nations by Carl Fredrik Reuterswärd.)

St. Peters, MO—

The endless series of mass shootings has shaken the nation, and one local independent voter sat down with The Halfway Post to discuss his thoughts.

Mark Harmell, 51, voted for Barack Obama in two elections, but voted for Donald Trump because he thought, even though Mr. Trump was a bit of a clown, Trump would try something new in government.

However, Harmell has been disappointed and confused by America’s contemporary hyper-partisanship. The issue that most disorients Harmell is America’s chronic gun violence problem, and he says the issue is just too complex to know what solution he should endorse.

“It’s just all so much to consider,” explained Mr. Harmell. “There’s the issue of the Second Amendment being enshrined as an American right, but, then again, an amendment is already a revision of the Constitution in a sense, so why should there be such a big fuss about amending an amendment to include some sensible ground rules? But it really throws me off my balance when both political parties can’t agree on a compromise. It’s a real conundrum. On the one hand you have the Democrats, who have been proposing for decades rational regulations to try and dramatically cut down on America’s alarming, global outlier statistics of gun violence every year, but on the other hand you have the Republicans who propose we change absolutely nothing at all no matter how many school children are martyred for the unfettered right to own weapons designed principally for killing mass numbers of humans in war settings and carry them around in pubic to the grocery store. How can you decide between such diametrically opposed positions?”

Harmell paused a moment.

“I just wish we could take a cooling-off period after each mass shooting like Republicans always call for, you know? That way tensions could simmer. But the Democrats and Republicans just jump right back at each other’s throats, with Democrats accusing Republicans of having blood on their hands because of their irresponsible inaction bribed via political campaign donations from the NRA’s election-time attack-ad extortion, and Republicans shrugging and admitting they can’t stay in office without earning an A-grade from the NRA every year. It’s like 50-50 in terms of who is to blame for the problem! Should I flip a coin? It’s just too complicated to make a decision between the detailed, study-analyzed strategies the Democrats offer that would adopt many of the effective policies other, safer countries employ, and the complete legislative lethargy Republicans offer. This is why we need a long break after every mass shooting to reflect and figure things out before we politicize the carnage. When dozens of people are murdered, the last thing we need to do is rush to conclusions on whether or not we could have in any way prevented it. In fact, I’d reckon we as a nation should take a full 30-day political break after every mass shooting in order for folks to fully form an opinion, and properly determine a societal response. The only problem is that America never even comes close to going a whole month without a mass shooting. Ah, man, I just don’t know. My gut tells me Republicans are right, and that we should just accept mass shootings and general, communal fear every time we go out into a public space as an unfortunate but acceptable consequence of America’s nonsensical, unevolvable commitment to both its 18th Century freedom to have a musket and its 19th Century, exclusively Southern Antebellum, slave-rebellion-squashing legal precedents on gun control judged by plantation-owning judges who were terrified of Black retaliation for the tortures of slavery that could only be defended against as long as all whites were constantly armed. But my brain tells me that’s stupid, and I should have voted for Hillary Clinton to try some safety-oriented reforms to gun ownership.”

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