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Letter: Guns before children

Smith & Wesson handguns hang on display at a Shooting, Hunting and Outdoor Trade show in Las Vegas, 2011. — AP file photo
Smith & Wesson handguns hang on display at a Shooting, Hunting and Outdoor Trade show in Las Vegas, 2011. — AP file photo

It’s becoming clearer, as the gun-control debate grows more vindictive, that our U.S. neighbours have had their system of government hijacked.

What began as a noble experiment in democracy has degenerated into a vicious cycle of corporate funds controlling the administration, and the administration enacting legislation to suit corporate commercial desires. This is the natural consequence of unregulated capitalism, and signals the failure of the American democratic experiment.

I’m sorry to say it, but I believe that even a Children’s Crusade against gun-violence will fail to reset the U.S. attitude toward guns.

The children have, as so often before, seen through the chicanery and the blatant lies. They have seen that the system has no intention of protecting them, but prefers to pander to the commercial lobby. Children’s lives have less value than corporate profits, and the government has long ago chosen to accept this sad situation.

Both Republican and Democrat candidates for Congressional and Senate seats depend on donations from armaments manufacturers and the National Rifle Association in order to finance their election campaigns. Children cannot influence a government that they are not supporting financially, so they must pay with their blood. Politicians may have children and grandchildren of their own, yet they are unsympathetic to the plight of the students who are being slaughtered in their schools. This is the sad state of U.S. society today.

The president, and many senators and congresspersons, continue to repeat clichéd and long-discredit excuses for not acting to control the ownership and use of firearms by civilians. The National Rifle Association doesn’t even bother to make excuses, but simply repeats ad nauseam, the old mantras about the Second Amendment and the God-given right of U.S. citizens to carry firearms, regardless of the cost in human lives. And the NRA buys more candidates every year, to insure against the development of a common-sense approach to gun-ownership.

I’m sorry to say it, but I believe that even a Children’s Crusade against gun-violence will fail to reset the U.S. attitude toward guns. That old Eddie Cochran song from the 1950s sums it up quite neatly: “I’d like to help you son, but you’re too young to vote.”

And a once-proud democratic nation goes under, thanks to a lethal overdose of capitalism…

Ed Healy

Marystown

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