A couple of weeks ago, I told about a gun threat at my daughter’s high school. Thankfully it was just a prank and the offender was arrested before any damage was done. But I knew it was just a matter of time before another school was not so lucky. And I knew it wouldn’t take too much time before something horrific happened.
The threats against Alison’s school were for the Friday before last. On Friday morning, Marysville-Pilchuck High School in Washington was the site of the latest school shooting in the USA. This time, the shooter was not anyone who’d be expected to do something like this, but a popular freshman who had just been crowned Homecoming Prince. Reportedly he had argued with cousin over a girl. His cousin and another were among those shot. Two girls are dead.
And go figure, a first year teacher WITHOUT A GUN, stepped in to stop him, probably saving many lives in the process.
The first national election since the Newtown massacre is taking place one week from tomorrow. Yet gun referendums are sadly lacking from the ballots this year – except in Washington where three people were killed at that high school and others could still die from being shot Friday.
Yet, there’s hope, because in the very state where this school shooting occurred, there is a chance to make gun laws tougher in November. There will be an initiative on the Washington State’s ballot—I-594—to create universal background checks, which looks likely to win. If you live in Washington, you must go out and vote for it, and otherwise let everyone you know who lives there that it must be supported. Washingtonians were lucky to have philanthropist Nick Hanauer spearhead its placement on the ballot from the beginning, and now facilitate its passage. Its success will inspire other similar measures around the country.
That would be great. Reason.com tells us more about that ballot initiative:
Initiative 594 would require background checks for every gun purchase in the state, though it exempts antique guns and transfers between family members. According to some analysis of the text, it goes so far as to make it illegal to even temporarily physically give a gun to somebody else except in cases where a person is in immediate danger or when hunting or on shooting ranges.
But they tell us there’s another gun initiative also on the Washington ballot:
On the other side, Initiative 591 would forbid Washington from confiscating firearms without due process or from implementing background checks unless there’s a uniform national standard. Needless to say, both of these laws can’t coexist. Early October polls have background checks passing handily, though support for both initiatives seems to have dropped.
One step up and two steps back, it seems. As for the rest of the country, there’s not much more. But what is on the ballot is not what we’d expect on the first national election since Newtown.
Chicago also has an “advisory” vote planned on whether to require background checks for gun sales and to ban the sale of “assault weapons,” despite the city’s reputation of having the toughest gun control laws in the country (and also, coincidentally, a reputation for people shooting each other). And on the flip side, Alabama voters will consider enshrining a state constitutional amendment protecting the right to bear arms and prohibiting any international treaties from interfering with this right.
The fear mongerers are telling us to be afraid (be very afraid) of Ebola and of ISIS. Yet the only airborne threat I worry about every morning when I drop my daughter at school is a flying bullet.
Of course, it’s the Republicans in the Senate that blocked any legislation that would have mandated universal background checks following the massacre at Sandy Hook elementary school almost two years ago. But instead of voting out the senators who filibustered such legislation, voters are getting ready to give that party control of the senate. It’s the definition of opposite world.
Howie Klein was on with me today for another edition of “The Steve Israel Hour, sponsored by Little Debbie”™ – and that Opposite World behavior is endemic to the DCCC, as Howie explained.
Thanks to Steve Israel’s bungling, all the Michigan House seats the DCCC had targeted have been abandoned and left to the Republicans– even while Gary Peters is cleaning up statewide against unqualified GOP lunatic Terri Lynn Land by wide margins. Luckily for Paul Clements, as it turns out, the most winnable seat in Michigan, Upton’s, was studiously ignored by Israel, even after polling showed how vulnerable Upton was. Pelosi, who many say has been asleep at the wheel for some time now, should have fired Israel back then; but she didn’t– and Clements has run a far more vigorous and successful campaign than any of Israel’s now-abandoned recruits. As a result, even Beltway pundits are now trying to find out where MI-06 is on a map.
You can read more about the Israel/DCCC bungling of this election cycle here and here. And Howie’s questions about the possibility that the CIA is inserting itself into Colorado’s Senate race here.
We’ll keep plodding along, exposing the truth and, hopefully, helping good win out over evil, radio or not…