The grand evasion of gun control

Josh Marshall, writing about the cop-out of refusing to name the shooter:

We as a society have made our decision. Monthly high profile gun massacres are the price we are willing to pay for increasingly unregulated access to guns by virtually everyone - with minor impediments for felons and people who have been adjudicated as mentally ill. If you step back from what I grant is the sincerity of many who advocate this non-naming, the whole thing is really just clearly a joke as a way to somehow take action about the growing scourge of mass gun violence.

It is a grand evasion because we need to make ourselves feel better by finding a way to think we are doing 'something' even though we're unwilling to do anything that actually matters. Except for those immediately affected or those in the tightly defined communities affected we also shouldn't give ourselves the solace of watching teary-eyed memorials or all the rest. Again, as a society we've made our decision. I would go so far as to say that it's good for us to know Mercer's name since we are in fact his accomplices. It's good that we know each other.

If you want to go on about how we ought not to give these guys (and let's face it—they are always guys) the fame they crave, fine. Same goes for decrying the state of mental healthcare, or offering up your thoughts and prayers for the victims and their families.

However, if you are not, at the same time, also willing to actively support the passage of laws and regulations that would actually do something about the fact that we have nearly as many guns in this country as people, or that we have as many gun-related mass killings as there are days in the year, then it's just empty rhetoric.

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