Wednesday, January 12, 2011

The fundamental difference.

Jim Kessler of Third Way via Salon:

"The two opposing lobbies are very different. The gun rights lobby consists of a grass-roots membership who are gun enthusiasts. The gun control lobby consists mainly of the family members of crime victims. And the number of gun enthusiasts dwarf the number of victims," he says.

At the end of the day, politics is nothing more than a game of numbers. Who has the most votes? Who can bring the most votes? How many votes will be lost because of voting a certain way? That's what's important to politicians. That's why voting is important. That's why contacting your politicians is important. And that's why John Boehner is saying no to passing any gun control legislation in response to the shooting of Gabby Giffords.

I have no doubt that Boehner has sat down, read the e-mails, weighed the pros and cons, crunched the numbers, and decided not to risk his reelection by passing gun control legislation. It's sad that politicians are more motivated by career aspirations than principal, but the outcome is still the same: A pro-gun politician will vote pro-gun because he has a lot of pro-gun constituents and an anti-gun politician will vote anti-gun because he has a lot of anti-gun constituents.

Going back to Kessler's quote, how do we ensure that gun enthusiasts keep the greater numbers? Take someone shooting. It doesn't cost much. A .22 caliber rifle is cheaper than a videogame console and a brick of .22 ammo is cheaper than a trip to the movies. Hearing and eye protection is provided for free at some gun ranges. And while you're at it, ask them questions. Have they bought into the "assault weapon" or Mexico lies? If so, correct them.

Remember: Every person you take shooting is one more person inoculated against gun control propaganda.

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