As many of you know, one year ago on December 14, 2012, Adam Lanza murdered twenty children and six adult staff members at Sandy Hook Elementary School in the village of Sandy Hook in Newtown, Connecticut. Before driving to the school, Lanza shot and killed his mother Nancy at their Newtown home. As first responders arrived, he committed suicide by shooting himself in the head.
Notable things have occurred since that shooting. Talks with Iran have been opened and years of diplomatic antagonism between the US and Iran are beginning to thaw. The Affordable Care Act has gone into effect and hundreds of thousands of US Citizens have health insurance for the first time, ever. Also, the website has been fixed. We hope.
Cuccinelli did not become Governor of Virginia. God whisperer, E.W. Jackson, went down in flames for the Lt. Governor slot and Herring is likely to seal the deal for the Attorney General office, making it a clean sweep for Democrats in an off-year election with their own party holding the Executive Branch. This is something that almost never happens. The take away is that change is possible in many things. Except one, apparently.
Based on data compiled by Slate.com using mainly media reports (because Republicans passed a law promising to defund the Atlanta-based CDC should it start tallying gun deaths), since Newtown, more than 11,400 people have been shot and killed in this country. Impressive! But that’s a low tally, actually, because the majority of gun deaths are suicides and the vast majority of suicides aren’t covered in the news. Of those shot and killed, at least 194 were children under 12.
Other notable non-happenings: since Newtown, no federal gun legislation has been passed, though multiple gun control measures fizzled out in the Senate without even making it to the Republican controlled House. But just that whiff of gun control was enough to send Red states into paroxysms. Kansas and Alaska lawmakers voted to enact laws nullifying federal gun regulations for guns manufactured and kept within state borders. Missouri Republican lawmakers passed a nearly identical bill, but failed to override Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon’s veto by one vote. Montana went to federal court to defend a similar law it passed in 2009. The law was overturned by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.
Meanwhile, with the rabid 2nd Amendment secessionists momentarily held at bay, some states opted to double down on the dumb, voting to both loosen gun restrictions and clear the way for armed volunteers to guard schools. The apparent logic being more guns should be able to solve the problems that some guns never caused in the first place. Thus we see teachers ordered to gear up and get trained at shooting galleries. On the surface, this might seem outrageous, a kind of callous attempt by the NRA (and their sponsoring gun manufacturers) to deny culpability for the Newton shooting by devising– in advance– a specialized nationwide insanity defense.
I immediately thought, ‘well yes, arm the teachers and, while you’re at it, lets create a template form for mass shootings so that we don’t have to waste all this time writing up ‘original’ stories about something that will become—if it has not already– more common place than auto deaths.’
But with age comes wisdom. Given the fact that we, as a nation, haven’t done anything to prevent future massacres after 12 long months of slaughter, and, indeed, have gone out of our way to increase their likelihood, I began to realize it just wasn’t a priority for us. The Democrats are bipolar, wringing their hands about wanton massacres but scared to touch the issue for fear of the gun lobby, while the Republicans inhabit their usual cogently direct, if deeply cynical, sucking up to the NRA in all things no matter how deeply misanthropic (and make no mistake, a 30 round ammunition clip is deeply misanthropic).
So let’s just cut to the chase. Since our kids are obviously the root to all our angst –what with worrying about feeding them, educating them, protecting them (or at least our right to protect them with heavy weaponry) providing them with healthcare, and ultimately some form of retirement, we should take the Newtown School shooting as a lesson in one way of handling our many social ills, reduce our ballooning healthcare costs, dramatically cut our Social Security payouts and ultimately still preserve our cherished freedoms and The American Way of Life ™.
Once we arm teachers, and train them so they are excellent marksman (thank you in advance, NRA, we know you’d be willing to help) we’ll have them, on some appointed date—say, December 14—line up and shoot all their children, thus eliminating the future costs of education, healthcare and retirement in one fell swoop. The real glory of this plan, of course, is that we’ll be belt-tightening and cost cutting in the all American way we’ve come to know and love, which is to say, systematically, and with extreme violence. We’ll give the plan a really cool name like, “War on America’s Future.”
I’m betting Paul Ryan will be all over this.