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Saturday, February 18, 2023

In case you didn't notice, American democracy has had some severe failures recently


On Valentine's Day, we were 45 days into the year 2023, and the U.S. had 67 mass shootings for the year.  America is unique for its mass shootings.  Despite its claims to be the peace-loving citadel of democracy, it killed 104 and wounded 269 so far this year in mass shootings.  Some quibblers will challenge that statement and insist that the country didn't kill them, some mass shooter did.  Those people cannot understand that the country is an accomplice to the crime.  Mass shootings have become a commonplace occurrence over four decades, and the country has been unwilling and unable to do anything about them.  And in 2021,  a total of 48,000 Americans were killed by firearms,

Easy access to guns, especially assault weapons, is a major contributor to this pestilence that asserts its rule over America.  The gun lobby has been successful in promoting an interpretation of Second Amendment that makes any attempt to control the presence and use of fire arms unconstitutional. That interpretation of the Second Amendment holds sway despite the fact that the right to bear arms is stated as conditional upon "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State..." 

For the gun lobby and its adherents, a conditional sentence is beyond their comprehension.  Therefore, conditional terms like "well regulated," "militia," and "security of a free state" are excised from any interpretation of the Second Amendment.  Any interpretation which embraces those conditions is interpreted as an infringement on the right to strut around with firearms ready to blast the ass off of anyone who seems threatening to you.  And the more people carrying firearms, the more threatening the country becomes.

A newspaper editorial responded to the school shootings with the comment that we need to love our children as much as we love our guns.  The gun nuts responded indignantly that they have guns because they love their kids and are armed to protect them, and that people say things like that to force gun control on them.  We've sure seen how well their owning guns for their kids sake has worked out.  

I am a gun owner, but have not as yet had to carry firearms around as I accompanied my children and grandchildren on their activities.  Nor have I stood guard over them at night in case the monster crept out from underneath their beds.  I am also an old soldier who on occasion slept with a carbine, but also understood why no one was considered off duty and went to bed in the billets or went out on pass until the battery armor reported that all firearms and bayonets were cleaned, turned in, and locked up.

And, when we have to teach our children to run. hide, and fight if a shooter shows up, we hardly live in a secure or free state.

 There are others ways that the stupid have found to inflict their vengeance on the intelligent.

As of the first of this month, 1,136,042 people in the U.S. died from covid.  The original White House Response Coordinator and other scientists say 30 to 40 percent of those deaths could have been prevented.

When Covid-19 began its spread throughout the land, quarantine and lock-down measures and the wearing of masks were ordered to reduced the spread of the disease.  Many people adhered to the rules;  many did not.  Those who followed the rules, as disruptive and inconvenient as they were, understood they were the only way to control the spread of the disease until medications and vaccines could be developed to combat it.  Others whined and raged that their freedom was being infringed and they weren't going to take it.  So they exercised their freedom to spread the pathogens and  endanger the health and lives of their fellow humans.  The hopelessly stupid are one of the biggest threats to life in America.

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Aberdeen, South Dakota, United States