A Little Honesty About Guns & Terrorists

As has happened in the past, when tragedy strikes, the national security complex kicks into overdrive and pushes controversial legislation through our always-campaigning Congress. After the Orlando tragedy the push has been focused on how to prevent terrorists from buying guns. Democrats, who staged a sit-in for action on gun safety measures, are creating a kerfuffle on the House floor and in the media – making it seem like a major/significant/far-reaching gun control endeavor – all to restrict guns to a less than 2,700 Americans. We’d hate to suggest that Democrats are high-fiving themselves for looking tough on terror at such a small price. And Republicans for their part, are trying to bring a discussion about due process into the debate, and battering Democrats for their giddiness to circumvent it. Many Republicans are eager to express their worry about having a strong mechanism for people to correct their erroneous placement on the watch list so that they can buy a gun; but, if they really cared about due process and not just gun ownership rights, then the discussion of due process should zero in on the secret guidelines and extrajudicial processes for putting people on the watch list in the first place. Both sides are playing politics with incredibly important issues, both sides are campaigning on this posturing, and in the meantime, the Constitution is being undermined continually by how the watch lists actually work. And, we’re no closer to passing laws that actually address our national gun violence epidemic.