The Big Picture –
By Glynn Wilson –
I had to turn off NPR news again this morning. I can’t listen to the same old, same old pretense of two-sidedness that helped get us into this mess in the first place.
I had to turn off the TV news on Sunday.
Same thing. Less facts.
The Facebook news feed and Titter this morning?
No better. Maybe worse.
So an American born citizen who hates gay people, happens to be of Afghan descent, expresses sympathy with so-called radical Islam, gets his hands on a hand gun and an assault rifle and goes on a shooting rampage at a gay bar in Orlando.
It’s a record, they say, as if this was a sporting event.
The Democrats, including Hillary Clinton, immediately call for more gun control. The memes have taken over Facebook.
The Republicans, especially Donald Trump, call for ramping up the “war on terror.”
Bashing Muslims has taken over Twitter.
Trump’s statement, just out from Twitter to Reuters, claims the United States government needs to increase its military response against the Islamic State in the wake of the Orlando nightclub shooting over the weekend, including additional bombings.
His henchman from Alabama, Republican Senator Jefferson Beauregard “Jeff” Sessions III, went on Fox News Sunday and said: “more of these attacks are coming.”
“It’s a real part of the threat that we face, and if we can’t address it openly and directly and say directly that there is an extremist element within Islam that’s dangerous to the world and has to be confronted, we need to slow down and be careful about those we admit into the country,” he said.
What? Did he just not read any of the new stories about what happened? Apparently not.
Omar S. Mateen was born in New York, a resident of Florida. He’s dead now anyway, shot by police.
Never mind the facts. Foment fear. Fire up the Christian Republican base. Get Trump elected president.
No words of sympathy for the victims or their families. You can imagine what they said at the kitchen table. “They were living in sin and had it coming, by god.”
It’s a wonder there is no statement out Monday morning from Judge Roy Moore. But I guess with his suspension from the Alabama Supreme Court, he figured it better to keep silent on this tragedy and let Sessions and Trump handle it.
What if it had been a white, Christian shooter? It could have been. That’s probably next. Maybe in Alabama.
Sorry for the cliche. But as they say, “you can’t fix crazy.”
Especially if you are a religious extremist.
So what’s the solution? More gun control?
Sure. Let’s elect more Democrats and do that. Ban the buying of assault weapons by civilians. Of course the NRA rhetoric, as misguided as it is in the manipulation of politics, is right in a way. Criminals will get their hands on the guns anyway.
More money for mental health counseling? Sure. Let’s do it.
Will it stop the next lone gunman from setting the next record for the number of people killed with guns on U.S. soil? Nope.
Will more domestic spying on Americans do any good? Obviously not.
The FBI had interviewed this guy three times. He had been reported as a threat. They didn’t have anyone watching him and they didn’t stop him from getting the guns or going on the killing spree. Clearly that has limited utility.
What about Trump’s solution? Drop more bombs on Muslims?
That is guaranteed to generate more hatred of America and result in more domestic attacks. Clearly that is not the answer.
What about preaching more religious tolerance? Can more religion be the answer to bad religious teaching? I don’t think so. You can say “love your neighbor” all you want, but that’s not going to stop human beings from hating their neighbors. It’s in our genes.
What about more science education and exploding the myths about religion? Now that might help. There’s no such thing as a god, no matter what you call him. There’s no such thing as Allah. There is no heaven. You are not going to be reworded with virgins in the next life. If you believe that, you are just an ignoramus.
Is there a politician anywhere who would say such a thing at a time like this? Of course not. Let’s pray for the victims and their families and promote religion some more.
Hey, I’ve got an idea. How about guaranteeing everyone a free college education and free health care, including psychiatric care?
Wow, we had one politician promoting those ideas. Bernie Sanders got up to 50 percent of the American public willing to vote for him, as long as he was running as a Democrat.
But in the final analysis, we can’t have such a democratic socialist in the White House now can we.
What if we showed compassion for the people of the Middle East and helped them overcome their religious dogma?
Nah. Let’s bomb the hell out of them.
And wake up every day waiting on the next record-breaking attack to happen.
The mainstream media will just make a fortune off the tragedy, as everyone watches in horror and hears no realistic discussion of an actual solution, and we keep up the partisan divide until Donald Trump is president.
You want all out world war between the Christians, the Jews and the Muslims, with guns paid for by American taxpayers? Go ahead. Make Trump’s day. Vote for him.
This may be the best story out yet: Donald Trump Is the Fearmonger Republicans Have Been Waiting For
President Obama did what he had to do, describing the worst mass shooting in U.S. history as “an act of terror” and “an act of hate.”
Then he tried to plant the seeds of a positive emotion that, unfortunatley, goes against human nature.
“We will not give in to fear or turn against each other,” he said in a bit of wishful thinking. “Instead, we will stand united as Americans to protect our people and defend our nation, and to take action against those who threaten us.”
What action is that exactly.? More drone attacks against innocent civilians?
Sorry, Mr. President. That’s not going to help either. In fact, it seems to be making matters worse.
Can we get back to that science education idea again? Why am I the only one talking about it?
Nevermind. Go back to your usual channel. I’m sure Wolf Blitzer has all the answers. Not.
© 2016, Glynn Wilson. All rights reserved.