Congressman Scalise was shot by a nutcase with a gun. The usual nutcase, a white male. He was targeted for his political beliefs by a disgruntled , out of work male and shot. Not killed, but almost.
The same thing happened to Congresswoman Giffords a few years ago. On the other side of the political spectrum. Shot by a disgruntled white male. A nutcase. Like Scalise, she survived.
In both cases Congress rose as one to condemn the senseless violence. In both cases Congress was appalled by the mindless, fanatic attack on one of their own. The Congress pulled together behind Giffords and Scalise. They condemned the violence. They praised the courage of their colleagues in the face of near-death.
Scalise and Giffords are heroes. They survived. They live . Congress is outraged. Congress is sickened. And Congress will do nothing about it. You can take that to the bank.
Since the terror attack on 9/11 over 372,000 Americans have been heroes. You don’t know their names. 372,000 Americans have been injured by guns. Intentionally. 372,000 heroes who have been cocooned in silence as far as Congress is concerned. Not a peep from the outraged. Not a condemnation from the Capitol dome. Nothing.
In addition. Approximately 186,000 Americans have been killed, intentionally, by guns. 186,000 heroes. Silent heroes. Unnamed heroes. They were not important. They were not in Congress.
There have been 62 tragedies of 9/11 proportions since 9/11. Americans terrorizing other Americans with guns. Americans murdering other Americans. Sixty-two 9/11s. From Congress? Silence.
Every day in America, on average, 7 children and teens are killed by guns. Every day. This week there will be 50 Gabby Giffords who do not survive. All of them under the age of 20. Over 5000 children hospitalized each year with gun-related injuries. And Congress is silent.
Every day 93 Americans are killed by guns. Homicide. Accident. Suicide. They are all dead. This year 34,000 Americans will die because someone had a gun. And didn’t keep it safe. Or used it aggressively in during a moment of anger. Or in a temporary fit of depression just took their own life. It is almost equivalent of one 9/11 each month. And Congress is silent.
So, it may seem cold. But I do not get outraged by the shooting of Giffords or Scalise. I don’t applaud the violence. But it leaves me a bit cold.
After all, there were over 66 Steve Scalises shot today and sent to the hospital. They survived as 66 unnamed heroes. No Congressmen shed tears or made speeches condemning their assailants. And the 230 Gabby Giffords who were shot this week did NOT survive. 230 dead unnamed heroes. Not a peep from Congress. Not a word. Silence.
When compared to other industrialized nations the US has a homicide rate which is, on average, 25 times higher. The US homicide rate by guns is 18 times greater than France. The gun homicide rate is 60 times higher than Germany. And the US murder rate with guns is a whopping 90 times that of the UK. (Note: These numbers are out of date, but not that far off).
To be fair, Latin American nations like Brazil, Mexico, Colombia, Guatemala, Belize, etc. have significantly higher murder rates that the US. So, I guess that is some consolation. We are better than Honduras. Hurray!
Nothing will change. Scalise will be lionized and applauded for surviving. He lives. But the applause will end. Our representatives will cry their collective crocodile tears. Then Congress will get back to regular order, which includes taking massive donations from the NRA and the gun industry. In the last election cycle the NRA and gun industry spent $ 52,000,000 opposing candidates who support gun control.
So the killings will continue. And so will the silence.