· The NRA is a terrorist organization. The U.S. Code defines terrorism as, “…premeditated, politically motivated violence perpetuated against noncombatant targets by subnational groups or clandestine agents.” That section of the Code assumes foreign powers; but is any power now more dangerous to America than the NRA, and its ‘clandestine’ operatives in Congress?
· For the first time in its history, the NRA itself is in the crosshairs. Wayne LaPierre and Dana Loesch squirm and dissemble before our very eyes. They were put in those sights by the magnificent kids in Parkland, Florida, who decided that they—and their peers across the country—had had enough. They provide modern additions to JFK’s Profiles in Courage. They are heroes.
· The subterranean strengths of these kids are twofold. First, for their peers, they have the power to make support of gun rights ‘uncool’. Is there any force more powerful than a teen fearful of being so branded in high school? And secondly, their passion will become the topic of millions of conversations at family dinner tables; and at many of those tables, Dad will argue that the kid just doesn’t know “what you’re talking about”. Which opens up the response, “Dad, don’t you want to protect me? Don’t you love me?” Gulp. At that moment…in some of those cases…adult minds—and votes—will be changed.
· Two thirds of Americans now support an outright ban on assault rifles. Which would seem to constitute a persuasive message to members of Congress. But their track record is clear, and their allegiances have been purchased with NRA dollars. (To see how this works in your area, click here). They may be cowardly, but they’re not blind. They know a new vote on gun restrictions would move front and center in their reelection campaigns—and uncomfortably so.
· Which means the fulcrum rests, as it often does, on the craven backs of Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell. Will they even allow such a vote to be held in their chambers? Don’t hold your breath. No matter what Trump proposes, they must provide the votes. And it’s in their best interests not to.
If it turns out that Congress is spared from a vote this year, you can always find out how your elected officials voted in the past. Here’s a good place to start.
Do not forget Parkland. But do not despair.
Do not put down your metaphorical rifle.
Have your vote locked and loaded for this election.