I No Longer Wish to Understand

October 3, 2017

I no longer wish to understand what “active shooter” means. I don’t want to know the difference between semi-automatic and automatic weapons. I have no desire to know how many rounds are in a magazine.

I no longer wish to understand your desire to protect your second amendment rights above the lives of your fellow Americans. I am not interested in your diversionary tactics, your smug analogies of blaming the car and not the driver for DUIs. I am tired of your constant question dodging when I ask things like, “Why would a regular civilian need to carry an assault rifle or a machine gun,” or “What’s the problem with adding additional steps to the gun purchasing process?”

You will tell me that overall crime rates are down in the past several years. It doesn’t matter that our homicide by firearms rates are almost four times higher than the next closest country on the list. You’ll say that restricting certain gun purchases won’t keep them off the black market, even though logic would argue restriction is a natural deterrent. You will blame mental illness (at the same time supporting a congressman that wants to remove funding from federal mental health programs). You’ll be unable to answer why you support border walls and travel bans to protect our country from international terrorism but stand silently by while our country is torn apart by domestic terrorism. You’ll say you don’t want to politicize the tragedy, sending your thoughts and prayers to the victims and their families, buying yourself more time and emotional distance before you refuse to engage in discussions about gun control. Because 1500 mass shootings in five years isn’t a pattern in your mind. It’s not something fixed by gun control. You’ll point to Chicago, erroneously claiming that they have the strictest gun control laws in the country and the highest homicide rates. Those “strict rules” have been laid bare by NRA lobbying, no longer requiring citizens to have permits or register their weapons, and in 2013, allowing them concealed carry. But New York City, with stricter gun control laws and homicide numbers trending to historic lows, doesn’t fit your narrative. You will use a hashtag like #Imwiththenra.You may bring up the car analogy again. I will remind you that cars are not designed for the purpose of killing people. That I am tired of your empty condolences and of your loyalty to a piece of metal over flesh and blood.

I no longer wish to understand what you think about the initial constructs of the second amendment. I no longer wish to understand your opinions, theories, and arguments about your right to bear arms. I am tired of listening to you spout off NRA sound bytes as if they were your own, tired of defining faith in our country in absolute terms by an outdated ideology focused on owning weapons. I am tired of listening to you defend a killing machine instead of the people it kills.

I refuse to defend an object responsible for so much death and destruction, and quite frankly, I can’t understand why you would either.

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