A solution looks very difficult …

Is There a Solution to the Recurrent Gun Problem in America?

The ‘Grim Reaper’, Republican Mitch McConnell. Photo: https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2021/06/mitch-mcconnell-is-crushing-joe-manchins-bipartisan-fantasies

So, is there a solution to the violent gun problem in the U.S., or not?

Well, necessarily, we need to look at the political situation of the country first, since all possible solutions to the gun problem need to be implemented by politicians at Congress.

But in America, at least roughly half of the population of the country (or at least, roughly half of the registered voters in the last Presidential election), indicated with their vote their willingness to support the then incumbent President Donald Trump, also a candidate for reelection, who had given clear signs of his anti-democratic behavior and unconditional support for the right of people to own guns.

Furthermore, the Republican party, for a long while a respectable political organization, the political home of various Presidents of the U.S during the last 200 years, seems almost unanimously willing to abandon democracy, throwing itself behind a yet undefined, but autocratic form of Government, providing almost total support to Donald Trump, who “owns” the Republican party and does not hide his intention to initiate a dynasty:

The Trump dynasty. The ex-President, with his daughter Ivanka, and to her right, sons Donald Jr. and Eric. Photo: Getty - https://1v1d1e1lmiki1lgcvx32p49h8fe-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/1573185370-Trump-Family.jpg

So, what happened in America?

Well, for starters, democracy has seemed unable to solve America’s myriad problems: poverty, excess of guns, a forever growing number of homeless, decaying infrastructure, voter suppression, insufficient wages, Healthcare & excessive cost of medicines…just to name a few.

But the funny (but very sad) thing is that instead of following a state policy, as common sense suggests, —especially, over the last 10 years — , the same political party that contributed more to the perennial character of many of those problems, the Republican party, is now apostatizing democracy.

In fact, an ugly culture of hate was established during Trump’s Presidency, (even before, but to a lesser extent) with President Trump, evidently and uneducatedly, on a live TV nationwide transmission with a very high rating, on the occasion of his 2020 State of the Union Address to Congress, refusing to accept a handshake offered to him, politely, by the House’s Speaker, Nancy Pelosi, who was left humiliated and with an extended arm by President Trump; and her in turn, ostensibly (and unquestionably damaging the institution she directs), tearing to small pieces a paper copy of Trump’s Estate of the Union Address’ discourse in the Lower Chamber, once the President finalized its delivery.

My reaction to that?:

The Physics’ principle of action and reaction:

A force applied to a body will generate a similar force to the one applied to it, with the same intensity, but in the oppossite direction.

Somehow, after Bush Jr. two-term Presidency, instead of a civilized policy of offering bipartisan support to estate bill matters beneficial to the whole country, a culture of obstructionism was the norm on both political parties, whether it was the Dems dominated House refusing to even discuss bills/projects created/desired by the Republicans, or — unacceptably — Republican Senator Mitch McConnell assuming the role of the Senate’s ‘obstructionist in chief’ to kill ALL of Obama’s bill initiatives, with total disregard of the possible beneficial impact of the bill over the American population.

Furthermore, Senator McConnell apparently quite enjoyed that role of being referred to as ‘the Grim Reaper’ of American politics (in his last reelection campaign to the Senate for Kentucky, he even ordered T-shirts printed with that symbol on them):

T-shirts utilized during Mitch McConnell’s Kentucky Senate reelection campaign. Photo: https://www.redbubble.com/es/i/camiseta/Mosc%C3%BA-Mitch-Turtle-Mitch-McConnell-Grim-Reaper-de-CharJens/40637255.FB110

“ It was nothing new for Mr McConnell though, a master of delay who famously said in 2010 the “most thing we want to achieve” was making Barack Obama a “one-term president”.

So much for Mitch McConnell as a statesman!

What sort of objective was that, for a responsible politician?

What’s wrong with voters in Kentucky, the poorest State of the Union, electing and reelecting that guy to the Senate?

During Obama’s Presidency, four Republicans served in Obama’s Cabinet: Ray LaHood as Secretary of Transportation, Robert McDonald as Secretary of Veterans Affairs, and Gates and Chuck Hagel as Secretary of Defense.

But that generosity of Obama toward the Republicans, produced no practical results, for Mitch McConnell, if anything, hardened his obstructionism.

Whether Republicans gave up on democracy, openly resorting now to voter’s suppression of blacks and lighted colored voters only, (which they have done in the past, though mostly in the Southern States, but now it’s done almost everywhere the Republicans control that State’s Assembly, under the shabby excuse of “preventing fraud” in future elections (?)), but more because of their anticipated prospects of amply losing those elections, due to the expected demographic change in America’s race chart, which indicates a higher — and growing — proportion of black and brown people in America’s citizenship (therefore mostly Democrat’s future voters), or, being generous, whether Republicans, under the influence of Trump (and, possibly … of Putin!) —, concluded that to get things done, democracy is not the best of systems (which is perhaps true in the short/immediate term, as building consensus takes time, but its absence is usually accompanied with the unacceptable high and rejectable price of liberties being lost), but in the intermediate/long run, it is proved again and again, that only democracy permits social mobility, while ensuring the happiness of the majority of the citizens.

On top of that, even if both parties magically reached a very unlikely agreement to modify the U.S. Constitution (for which 2/3 in both Chambers need to agree), such an amendment would be very difficult (if not impossible), to be implemented, as the same Constitution establishes that any Constitutional change needs to be approved by 3/4 of the States, of 38/50 States.

Just remember that many Americans offered and lost their lives during the wars, fighting against authoritarian regimes, especially in the Pacific War against Imperial Japan, and also in Europe, against Hitler’s dictatorial Germany, both during WWII.

Shame on those trying to make that supreme sacrifice vain! … instead of using their positions in Congress to improve the living conditions of ALL Americans, not only their parties’, nor themselves.

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Eugenio Magdalena

Eugenio is a disabled Economist (UCAB, Caracas), cursed a post-graduate Diploma in Marketing (Strathclyde University, Scotland, UK), and an MBA (England, UK).