Americ Flags half staffIt is almost a week since the slaughter of 49 people in a nightclub in Orlando. If the media is any indication of what is true, our nation is sad, angry, confused and shaken. At the very least those are good descriptors of where I am.

Sad, intensely, that 49 lives have been taken. They were mercilessly killed by a man wielding guns who in my humble opinion had no right obtaining or owning. Somewhere on line I read that it is easier to buy an assault rifle than Sudafed. (Probably an exaggeration but you get the point. We choose what we regulate and guns seem to be too sacred for the Feds to touch.)

We are angry at each other and we are angry at our elected officials who refuse to do anything about this plague of violence. I think J.J. Goldberg’s editorial in The Forward is right on target. He asks, “Why the Orlando Massacre has America so angry at itself”. We are so angry we can’t hear each other talk; we are so angry we can’t even agree on the causes of the attack. Is it the easy access to assault weapons? Is it Radical Islam and the actual or emotional ties that the killer had to ISIS? Is it homophobia or even self-loathing? Is it mental instability? Is it one of the above, some of the above or all of the above.

I don’t mean to be cute or make light of the tragedy. My answer is it is all of the above. It is too easy to get assault weapons in this country and if someone is on the no fly list and they are too dangerous to be sitting on a plane next to me it feels too obvious that they are too dangerous to have a semi-automatic rifle. And that is on Congress. And that is on our public representatives who are supposed to insure that “government of the people, by the people, for the people shall not perish from the earth.” Well who cares for “the people” in Washington? Not those who think guns are more sacred than human lives, or the gun lobby is too powerful to go up against.

I can feel my anger rising as I write.  I am not afraid to say the words “radical Islam”. I am also not afraid to say the words “Jewish extremists and Christian crusaders”. My point being that every religion and culture has those who pervert their fundamental message and use them for their own political purposes. I feel for my gay friends. This hit their community extra hard. All the pride and progress of the last few years diminished. It is a terrible reminder that we have a long way to go for GLBT equality and acceptance. And how young? But I guess that’s no criteria – they were younger still at Sandy Hook.

No, I don’t care what you say: It is not about ISIS; it is not about Homophobia: It is not about mental instability; it is about guns. It is about easy access. Someone will always find a cause worth killing for. It is about the cowardice of congress. It is about the failure of our representatives to protect us. It is about their interest, not ours. It is disgusting.


9 thoughts on “Angry

  1. Right on! It is a very sad commentary on American Politics that the gun and weapon manufacturers are able to use the NRA as a front organization and contribute vast sums to politicians who act as the manufacturers’ puppets in claiming that ANY regulation on gun sales is the “death” of the Second Amendment. We have speed limits and other laws that regulate our behaviors. Speed limits are not equal to prohibiting people from driving at all, any more than a ban on assault weapons means that hunters can’t own shotguns and homeowners can’t own a handgun to “protect their family” (if they think that’s a good thing). Australia bought back all the assault weapons in 1996 and hasn’t had a mass murder since. There’s a lesson to be learned from that.


  2. Hi Rabbi,
    It’s not apocryphal; you can buy a gun faster than Sudafed. For more info, Google ‘skittling.”
    I am disgraced by our politicians, local and national, who sell their souls and their votes to lobbyists.
    As for John McCain, there are no words harsh enough to vilify him.


  3. you are so correct. And it leave all of us angry- or feeling impotent – or just plain giving up and letting the world take its course– That is the worst alternative.
    I am going to a gun ralley today- the first I have ever gone to- it must change.!!!!!!!!


  4. They can have all of the single-shot, muzzle-loading muskets they want…which is what existed when the amendment was passed. The Founding Fathers may have passed the same law if semi-automatics existed, but we can’t know that. We can know that semi-automatic weapons are designed to kill people in large numbers and quickly. Not hunting. Not defending your home.


  5. Addendum: Coincidentally, there is an excellent article on the problems deciphering the problems of gun control in Science News magazine (Society for Science & the Public), May 14, 2016.


    • since last Sunday’s tragedy, gun sales [ especially of the specific type of weapon used ] have surged across the U.S., throughout Florida, and even in the Orlando area [ and, apparently, particularly in the LGBT community ] . . . how can we blame our elected officials, local or national, when the American public sends so clear a message ? we have met the enemy, and it is US !


  6. So true. Thank you for your powerful words. Anger and frustration – that is what I feel. That can lead too easily to despair when I feel helpless about trying to make the necessary changes. But we can’t give up – I hope anger will continue to lead to change and action.


    • Thanks Sue . I couldn’t agree more. It needs to lead to action. It is just so frustrating that our elected reps can’t move the needle.


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