How easy it is to predict the reactions to the gun massacres in the United States. With two massacres, in Atlanta and Boulder, in less than a week, not all the bereavements or outrages seem to produce political courage in Washington. “Now is not the time to talk about gun possession control,” is the automatic comment from Republicans.
No country comes close to the United States in numbers, with more weapons than people. It is estimated that nearly half of the 857 million firearms in civilian hands around the world belong to Americans.
The culture of arms is based on a distorted interpretation of the Second Amendment to the Constitution, the text of which says, “a well-regulated militia, being necessary for the security of a free state, the right of the people to bear arms must not be violated “.
The Second Amendment was adopted in the 18th century, after the founding of the Republic which rebelled against the tyranny of the British monarchy. It’s an archaic piece that doesn’t make sense in the 21st century. But the amendment has become a favorite ammunition in the cultural wars promoted by the American right, oblivious to the idea that the amendment does not protect the accumulation of countless automatic weapons used by armies and enough ammunition to practice, in a few minutes, massacres.
Days before the Atlanta Massacre, the House passed two gun control laws, both relating to background checks, which are not guaranteed to pass the Senate, where there are 50 representatives from each party and a tie vote is required. President Kamala Harris.
Most conservative Democratic senator Joe Manchin of West Virginia said he was opposed to the extension of scrutiny envisioned by one of the laws. President Joe Biden is considering executive action if Congress does not act.
A recent poll by Morning Consult found that 84% of U.S. voters support a universal background check. But the appetite for gun control waned late last year, according to the Gallup Institute. Only 57% of Americans advocate stricter pruning laws, compared to 67% who were in favor in 2018.
In 2020, Americans legally purchased nearly 40 million firearms, and in January, during the Capitol invasion, fueled by Donald Trump’s conspiracy theories, sales soared 60%, with more of 4 million guns sold.
Many saw the decline of the National Rifle Association, the main arm of the pro-gun lobby, as a chance for political change. The NRA has been facing a financial crisis and internal divisions for more than a year, which has reduced its power to retain politicians. But the void left by the NRA was filled by another bully, Donald Trump. The former president has made it clear he will take revenge on Republicans who voted to impeach and certify Biden’s victory in January.
Trump is organizing his influence machine for the 2022 midterm election. Republicans running for re-election in districts where gun reform is popular fear the challenge of a Trump protege to primary, often radicalized by so-called voters with a single agenda, such as abortion or guns.
Support for the Republican Party has waned across the country. But the right to mass murder must continue to be protected, thanks to a minority within the Republican minority.
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