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Gabby Giffords, Guns and the Politicization of 20 Dead Kids

Just finished writing a blog post about former U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords’ speech to the Senate about ending gun violence in America.

“This is an important conversation for our children, for our communities, for Democrats, for Republicans,” she said last week. “Speaking is difficult but I need to say something important. Violence is a big problem. Too many children are dying. Too many children. We must do something. It will be hard, but the time is now. You must act. Be bold, be courageous. Americans are counting on you, thank you.”

Really, when people hear this broken voice, see this woman that has been to hell and back, what do they think? When you see a group of ten-year-olds sing the national anthem at the Super Bowl after watching two dozen of their friends and classmates perish, what do you think? That we need to ban guns or stock up on ammo? This is human life, not a political rally.

A comparative viewpoint, from the Atlantic Wire: how Norway responded to their attacks (the shooting that left 80+ dead in the summer of 2011) with the U.S.’s response to terrorism.

“So, what explains Norway’s differing reaction? Bernt Aardal, a Norwegian political scientist, tells Reuters that in small countries like Norway, which has a population of only five million, people tend to band together in the face of attacks such as these.”

We’re driven by our partisanship. Only here can the outright slaughter of 20 little kids be condensed into another chapter of the left versus right showdown. There are a lot of things I don’t get, but I don’t get why we politicize everything. I guess that’s the point of this post. Why do we have to view Gabby Giffords as a symbol of why we should support gun control or a change in policy? Why can’t we just empathize and work together, get to the root of this issue, which has nothing to do with bullets. It’s about our culture, it’s about our national mindset. I’ve passed the point of trying to make this a strong argument. Honestly, I don’t even know what I’m arguing. Maybe I should run for office.

Published inPolitics