By Robert A. Vella
Probably not. As detailed in yesterday’s editorial on this blog, there are powerful forces aligned against any sort of gun control in the U.S. Still, members of Congress who are opposed to such remedial measures (most Republicans and some Democrats) are motivated to at least give the appearance that they are responding to deadly incidents of gun violence like the one which struck a gay nightclub in Orlando last weekend. This political dance of inaction typically plays out in the following manner:
- Everyone condemns the criminal act of violence.
- Everyone lines-up into opposing camps to place blame in accordance with their chosen ideology.
- The President issues a perfunctory statement on the tragedy.
- The mainstream news media enters the picture to express the public’s frustration with political inaction.
- One or two congress members stage demonstrations ostensibly to demand legislative action on gun control.
- The political opposition reluctantly offers an olive branch to give the impression that they actually care about solving the growing societal problem of gun violence.
- Legislative proposals initially seem promising as common ground appears reachable.
- Competing special interests flood into the process and grind it to a halt.
- The mainstream news media stops covering the story.
- Depending on the nature and severity of public outrage, Congress either passes ineffectual gun control measures or claims the problem too difficult to solve politically and passes nothing at all.
- The next mass shooting occurs and the process starts all over again (rinse and repeat).
We’ve now arrived at step #7. You can read the details for yourself: