Filibuster stands in way of For the People Act
We have to get rid of the filibuster to stop the tyranny of the extremist minority that currently dominates our political power through violence, guns, racism, and disinformation. We have to do that to pass the For the People Act. If this Senate can do nothing else, it must reestablish the democracy that allows regular people — not extremists — to get elected.
Large, large majorities of Americans support:
1) reasonable gun control measures (universal background checks, waiting periods, bans on weapons of war);
2) increased taxes on the uber-wealthy;
3) increased voting access;
4) investments in infrastructure like roads and bridges and public transportation;
5) campaign finance reforms to reduce or eliminate the power that corporations and lobbyists have over the election process and over the elected.
And yet the elected GOP cheat to stay in power and refuse to enact any legislation related to the above. HR1, the For the People Act, will level this playing field, and we only get that done by removing the non-constitutional filibuster.
Start talking about responsibility instead of rights
If you own a gun you are probably one of the more than 80% of gun owners who support expanded background checks according to a Public Policy Polling survey. Why is this? Because even if you are a lifetime member of the NRA or an avowed pacifist you want to keep guns out of the hands of dangerous people. Under current federal law, no background check is required when buying a gun online or from a private seller at a gun show. Now we know that the young man accused of killing 10 people in Boulder passed his background check. So an expanded check wouldn’t have caught him. However, a waiting period might have made the difference.
When discussing gun laws why do we insist on calling it “gun control” when in reality what we who are concerned mean is “gun safety”? Think of the “laws” we abide by from seat belts to traffic lights. Yes, they are controls, but they are there for public safety; something we all have a stake in.
Gun owners like to talk about their rights under the Second Amendment, but now is the time to begin the talk about their responsibilities. Just like a mask and social distancing have helped prevent the spread of COVID, requiring everyone who wants to buy a gun — any gun, anywhere — to undergo a thorough background check and a waiting period will help prevent those who shouldn’t have a gun from getting one. True, these measures won’t prevent all gun violence, but it might prevent some young man from buying a gun one day and killing 10 people with it the same week. Please put away your rights talk and start the conversation about responsibility. We all share in that and we can all be safer for it.