HOME



Digby's Hullabaloo
2801 Ocean Park Blvd.
Box 157
Santa Monica, Ca 90405



Facebook: Digby Parton

Twitter:
@digby56
@Gaius_Publius
@BloggersRUs (Tom Sullivan)
@spockosbrain



emails:
Digby:
thedigbyblog at gmail
Dennis:
satniteflix at gmail
Gaius:
publius.gaius at gmail
Tom:
tpostsully at gmail
Spocko:
Spockosbrain at gmail
tristero:
Richardein at me.com








Infomania

Salon
Buzzflash
Mother Jones
Raw Story
Huffington Post
Slate
Crooks and Liars
American Prospect
New Republic
Common Dreams
AmericanPoliticsJournal
Smirking Chimp
CJR Daily
consortium news

Blog-o-rama

Eschaton
BagNewsNotes
Daily Kos
Political Animal
Driftglass
Firedoglake
Taylor Marsh
Spocko's Brain
Talk Left
Suburban Guerrilla
Scoobie Davis
Echidne
Electrolite
Americablog
Tom Tomorrow
Left Coaster
Angry Bear
oilprice.com
Seeing the Forest
Cathie From Canada
Frontier River Guides
Brad DeLong
The Sideshow
Liberal Oasis
BartCop
Juan Cole
Rising Hegemon
alicublog
Unqualified Offerings
Alas, A Blog
RogerAiles
Lean Left
Oliver Willis
skippy the bush kangaroo
uggabugga
Crooked Timber
discourse.net
Amygdala
the talking dog
David E's Fablog
The Agonist


Denofcinema.com: Saturday Night at the Movies by Dennis Hartley review archive

01/01/2003 - 02/01/2003 02/01/2003 - 03/01/2003 03/01/2003 - 04/01/2003 04/01/2003 - 05/01/2003 05/01/2003 - 06/01/2003 06/01/2003 - 07/01/2003 07/01/2003 - 08/01/2003 08/01/2003 - 09/01/2003 09/01/2003 - 10/01/2003 10/01/2003 - 11/01/2003 11/01/2003 - 12/01/2003 12/01/2003 - 01/01/2004 01/01/2004 - 02/01/2004 02/01/2004 - 03/01/2004 03/01/2004 - 04/01/2004 04/01/2004 - 05/01/2004 05/01/2004 - 06/01/2004 06/01/2004 - 07/01/2004 07/01/2004 - 08/01/2004 08/01/2004 - 09/01/2004 09/01/2004 - 10/01/2004 10/01/2004 - 11/01/2004 11/01/2004 - 12/01/2004 12/01/2004 - 01/01/2005 01/01/2005 - 02/01/2005 02/01/2005 - 03/01/2005 03/01/2005 - 04/01/2005 04/01/2005 - 05/01/2005 05/01/2005 - 06/01/2005 06/01/2005 - 07/01/2005 07/01/2005 - 08/01/2005 08/01/2005 - 09/01/2005 09/01/2005 - 10/01/2005 10/01/2005 - 11/01/2005 11/01/2005 - 12/01/2005 12/01/2005 - 01/01/2006 01/01/2006 - 02/01/2006 02/01/2006 - 03/01/2006 03/01/2006 - 04/01/2006 04/01/2006 - 05/01/2006 05/01/2006 - 06/01/2006 06/01/2006 - 07/01/2006 07/01/2006 - 08/01/2006 08/01/2006 - 09/01/2006 09/01/2006 - 10/01/2006 10/01/2006 - 11/01/2006 11/01/2006 - 12/01/2006 12/01/2006 - 01/01/2007 01/01/2007 - 02/01/2007 02/01/2007 - 03/01/2007 03/01/2007 - 04/01/2007 04/01/2007 - 05/01/2007 05/01/2007 - 06/01/2007 06/01/2007 - 07/01/2007 07/01/2007 - 08/01/2007 08/01/2007 - 09/01/2007 09/01/2007 - 10/01/2007 10/01/2007 - 11/01/2007 11/01/2007 - 12/01/2007 12/01/2007 - 01/01/2008 01/01/2008 - 02/01/2008 02/01/2008 - 03/01/2008 03/01/2008 - 04/01/2008 04/01/2008 - 05/01/2008 05/01/2008 - 06/01/2008 06/01/2008 - 07/01/2008 07/01/2008 - 08/01/2008 08/01/2008 - 09/01/2008 09/01/2008 - 10/01/2008 10/01/2008 - 11/01/2008 11/01/2008 - 12/01/2008 12/01/2008 - 01/01/2009 01/01/2009 - 02/01/2009 02/01/2009 - 03/01/2009 03/01/2009 - 04/01/2009 04/01/2009 - 05/01/2009 05/01/2009 - 06/01/2009 06/01/2009 - 07/01/2009 07/01/2009 - 08/01/2009 08/01/2009 - 09/01/2009 09/01/2009 - 10/01/2009 10/01/2009 - 11/01/2009 11/01/2009 - 12/01/2009 12/01/2009 - 01/01/2010 01/01/2010 - 02/01/2010 02/01/2010 - 03/01/2010 03/01/2010 - 04/01/2010 04/01/2010 - 05/01/2010 05/01/2010 - 06/01/2010 06/01/2010 - 07/01/2010 07/01/2010 - 08/01/2010 08/01/2010 - 09/01/2010 09/01/2010 - 10/01/2010 10/01/2010 - 11/01/2010 11/01/2010 - 12/01/2010 12/01/2010 - 01/01/2011 01/01/2011 - 02/01/2011 02/01/2011 - 03/01/2011 03/01/2011 - 04/01/2011 04/01/2011 - 05/01/2011 05/01/2011 - 06/01/2011 06/01/2011 - 07/01/2011 07/01/2011 - 08/01/2011 08/01/2011 - 09/01/2011 09/01/2011 - 10/01/2011 10/01/2011 - 11/01/2011 11/01/2011 - 12/01/2011 12/01/2011 - 01/01/2012 01/01/2012 - 02/01/2012 02/01/2012 - 03/01/2012 03/01/2012 - 04/01/2012 04/01/2012 - 05/01/2012 05/01/2012 - 06/01/2012 06/01/2012 - 07/01/2012 07/01/2012 - 08/01/2012 08/01/2012 - 09/01/2012 09/01/2012 - 10/01/2012 10/01/2012 - 11/01/2012 11/01/2012 - 12/01/2012 12/01/2012 - 01/01/2013 01/01/2013 - 02/01/2013 02/01/2013 - 03/01/2013 03/01/2013 - 04/01/2013 04/01/2013 - 05/01/2013 05/01/2013 - 06/01/2013 06/01/2013 - 07/01/2013 07/01/2013 - 08/01/2013 08/01/2013 - 09/01/2013 09/01/2013 - 10/01/2013 10/01/2013 - 11/01/2013 11/01/2013 - 12/01/2013 12/01/2013 - 01/01/2014 01/01/2014 - 02/01/2014 02/01/2014 - 03/01/2014 03/01/2014 - 04/01/2014 04/01/2014 - 05/01/2014 05/01/2014 - 06/01/2014 06/01/2014 - 07/01/2014 07/01/2014 - 08/01/2014 08/01/2014 - 09/01/2014 09/01/2014 - 10/01/2014 10/01/2014 - 11/01/2014 11/01/2014 - 12/01/2014 12/01/2014 - 01/01/2015 01/01/2015 - 02/01/2015 02/01/2015 - 03/01/2015 03/01/2015 - 04/01/2015 04/01/2015 - 05/01/2015 05/01/2015 - 06/01/2015 06/01/2015 - 07/01/2015 07/01/2015 - 08/01/2015 08/01/2015 - 09/01/2015 09/01/2015 - 10/01/2015 10/01/2015 - 11/01/2015 11/01/2015 - 12/01/2015 12/01/2015 - 01/01/2016 01/01/2016 - 02/01/2016 02/01/2016 - 03/01/2016 03/01/2016 - 04/01/2016 04/01/2016 - 05/01/2016 05/01/2016 - 06/01/2016 06/01/2016 - 07/01/2016 07/01/2016 - 08/01/2016 08/01/2016 - 09/01/2016 09/01/2016 - 10/01/2016 10/01/2016 - 11/01/2016 11/01/2016 - 12/01/2016 12/01/2016 - 01/01/2017


 

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?

Hullabaloo


Monday, December 21, 2015

 
*This post will stay at the top of the page for a while. Please scroll down for new material.


We have to look in the mirror when it comes to gun violence

by digby




After the 2000 election it was taken as an article of faith that the "gun issue" was a loser for Democrats because Al Gore lost his home state of Tennessee and everyone assumed that failing to be properly reverent toward gun culture was the reason the reason. It always struck me as a shockingly fatuous assumption in the first place, and an immoral abdication of common sense in the other. Without some kind of opposition it was obvious that the gun lobby would be able to enact its entire agenda without any restraint and that's exactly what happened. By 2008, the right wing Supreme Court declared the "right to bear arms" a individual right for the first time and the assault ban had been lifted and open carry, "stand your ground" "castle doctrine" and other expansions of guns rights were being enacted all over the country. We are now awash in gun violence.

I don't know if the Democratic Party's abdication of the issue would have made a difference. maybe it wouldn't have. But it was a mistake on principle in any case. If you give these people and inch they will take a mile --- and people will die.

I've been writing about this issue since I started blogging.  I've simply never been able to understand how we can call ourselves and civilized country and live with this deadly violence so that people can have what amounts to a toy for their amusement. It's insane.

This is an excerpt of a piece I wrote after one of the many mass shootings we've had this year:
Unfortunately, even the shock of a man gunning down rooms full of first graders was not enough to get us to face up to our problem. And there’s really one man who bears most of the responsibility for that: the head of the NRA Wayne LaPierre. After the Newtown massacre, most Americans believed it was inconceivable that nothing would be done. There was tremendous momentum to start making some necessary changes. But as a recent PBS Frontline documentary called “Gunned Down: The Power of the NRA” put it, LaPierre would have none of it: 
NARRATOR: His advisers wanted him to lie low, but LaPierre had a very different idea. Expecting trouble, he hired personal security guards, and headed into Washington. 
ROBERT DRAPER, The New York Times Magazine: Without telling anyone, LaPierre himself staged a press conference in Washington, D.C. 
NARRATOR: The media gathered. Many expected a chastened and conciliatory LaPierre. 
ROBERT DRAPER: I think there was an assumption that, surely, he’s going to throw the gun safety advocates, and for that matter the Newtown parents, some kind of bone. 
NARRATOR: But LaPierre had something else in mind. 
WAYNE LaPIERRE: The only way — the only way — to stop a monster from killing our kids is to be personally involved and invested in a plan of absolute protection. The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun. 
ED O’KEEFE: And he almost immediately goes right back to what they usually say, which is that the answer to this is more guns. 
WAYNE LaPIERRE: What if, when Adam Lanza started shooting his way into Sandy Hook elementary school last Friday, he’d been confronted by qualified armed security? 
SHERYL GAY STOLBERG, The New York Times: His comments are aimed directly at the gun owners of America, to rile them up, to get them behind the NRA’s no holds barred, never say die, you know, no compromise position. 
WAYNE LaPIERRE: Our children— we as a society leave them every day utterly defenseless, and the monsters and the predators of the world know it and exploit it. 
NARRATOR: In Washington, they said the speech was a political disaster. 
PROTESTER: The NRA stop killing our children! 
NARRATOR: In New York City, LaPierre was called the craziest man on earth and a gun nut. But those who know LaPierre say the speech was no miscalculation. 
PAUL BARRETT: This was not off the cuff. He didn’t lose it. This was very thought out. And they decided on a strategy and they executed the strategy. 
JOHN AQUILINO: Because the people that it resonated with gave more money, and this is what you need to do in order to keep that— that tough persona. 
PAUL BARRETT: And we’ve got to send the signal that this is not the time to compromise, that Obama is the enemy, and they want to take your guns away. Yes, it’s too bad about the kids, but we are not going to back down.
And that was that. 
(The documentary is well worth watching in full if you are unfamiliar with LaPierre’s history with NRA and the dramatic influence this one man has had on our country.) 
Would sensible gun control put an end to violence? Of course not. Will it stop all murder and suicide? Obviously not. But we are experiencing an epidemic of gun violence in this country the likes of which no one else in the world has to live with. And the way to deal with that is by treating it as an epidemic. 
There is a famous story about a British doctor by the name of John Snow who had a theory that cholera was spread through water contaminated by sewage. In the 1850s, it was widely assumed that the disease was caused by breathing vapors or a “miasma in the atmosphere” and Snow was unable to convince his colleagues otherwise. In 1854 there was a bad outbreak in the London suburb of Soho, where Snow happened to live. He suspected that the outbreak was due to a very busy public water pump in the center of town and set about tracking it meticulously through hospital records and interviews. By creating a geographical grid to chart of deaths, connecting them to the pump and eliminating other possible sources, Dr Snow was able to create what he considered proof that the drinking water was causing the outbreak. He took the evidence to the town officials and convinced them to take the handle off the pump. The epidemic ceased almost immediately. 
It was years before the medical profession fully understood the bacteriological basis for the disease and develop treatments for it. But the point is that it wasn’t necessary to cure the disease to end the epidemic. What ended it was shutting down that pump. 
What Clinton said in her statement yesterday is indisputably true. We have all the epidemiological evidence we need to know that gun control will save lives. According to the New England Journal of Medicine, after DC banned handguns, gun homicides fell by 25 percent and gun suicides fell by 23 percent. Even more dramatically, after Australia banned automatic, semi-automatic and pump-action shotguns and initiated a buyback program to take 700,000 guns out of private hands after a horrific mass shooting nearly 20 years ago, they have not had a single mass shooting since. Gun homicides fell by 59 per cent and firearm-related suicides fell by 65 per cent with no consequential rise in homicides and suicides by other means. 
They didn’t cure violence or hatred or depression or death. They just shut down the pump. We could too. It’s really not that complicated.
A lot of people are writing about gun violence these days and hopefully it will, in the end, amount to some changes.  I can guarantee that I will keep writing about it no matter what.  (And will deal with the truly ugly trolling that goes along with it.) But Democrats need to take stock of their own complicity in this bloody mess and see it as a lesson in political cynicism. It was very convenient to let the "gun issue" go.  It didn't result in any political advantage at all. But it did result in lax laws, more violence and many deaths. Some things you just don't play politics with.

If you feel as strongly as I do about this, I hope you'll donate to the holiday fundraiser this year so we can keep the Hullabaloo doors open for another year.

Happy Hollandaise everyone!














.