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Assault on America, Day 216: American culture of death, not firearms, to blame for mass murders

Trump Act as One
What’s wrong with America?

The question isn’t an allusion to last week’s Democrat presidential primary debates where each hopeful took his or her personal slaps at President Donald Trump and the country -- and the people -- he supposedly represents. I’m referring to the recent mass shootings perpetrated in California, Texas and Ohio that combined took the lives of over 30 people. The needless loss of innocent souls touched the hearts of everyone who values life and naturally, good citizens are crying out for an end to the violence and sickness that’s creeped its way into our culture.

The proposed solutions predictably diverged along ideological and party lines, with liberal Democrats hollering for another round of gun control deliberations (Take your thoughts and prayers and shove it -- this time we’re gonna do something about it!) and conservative Republicans calmly suggesting there be more stringent monitoring of the mentally ill. The latter group also believes a greater expansion of Second Amendment rights (to arm ourselves against the inevitability of such heinous rampages) is prudent.

There’s no honor in the feelings of helplessness victims experience if confronted by a kook bearing a gun (or any weapon) when the authorities aren’t on scene to “protect” and prevent the loss of life. There’s also no comfort in knowing these incidents are incredibly isolated and the chances of getting caught in one probably equals the likelihood of being struck by lightning or killed by a tornado. Tell it to the victims’ families and ask whether they’re soothed by the notion their loved one was a statistical anomaly.

As someone whose family was touched by murder, it’s no comfort at all.

As would be expected much of post-calamity focus was on “white nationalism” and what must be done to combat it. In a piece entitled, ‘It’s Time to Declare War on White-Nationalist Terrorism’, David French wrote at National Review, “[S]omehow all too many Americans have convinced themselves that the only way to ‘fight’ is to use language that is deliberately designed to stoke fear and rage — that pushes the envelope with the express purpose of enraging our opposition...

“This is a pivotal moment in our modern history. Every wave of terror is dangerous, but waves of racist terror are particularly dangerous in a nation that was once torn to bloody shreds in large part because of its repugnant white supremacism.

“Law enforcement should pursue terrorists relentlessly. Policymakers should think creatively. And our nation’s leaders need to focus on reconciliation and unity, and if they are not up to that most basic and fundamental aspect of their job, then they must be replaced.”

No illusions about it -- French was talking about Trump.

There are a whole basketful of issues French brings up. First of all, he’s right -- elected leaders should condemn these acts and the motivations behind them, which to my knowledge, President Trump and every other leader who’s been asked about the subject has spoken out strongly against the culprits and what they stand for. To imply that Trump supports or is furthering the cause of the “Alt-right” (whatever the heck that is) by his rhetorical emphasis on the immigration issue is utter poppycock.

Members of the “Alt-right” apparently use online forums and social media to identify each other and spread their hateful delusions among their limited sphere of adherents. Free speech is free speech -- if the government gets into the business of deciding what is proper to write or say, soon the speech codes’ defenders will find just about everything “offensive” to someone. While it only makes sense for law enforcement to monitor such things (if there’s a proven connection), at what point would they step in?

What if a climate change kook in an online leftist forum talks about chaining himself to a tree, spray painting slogans on an ICE facility or spills that he’s joining the local Antifa group? Criminalize the behavior… or the words themselves? Should we lock everyone up for hinting they’re about to act? Or attach ankle monitors? Shock therapy?

French cites Trump’s frequent use of the word “invasion” (to describe the waves of illegal immigrants) as arousing the overly impressionable internet-obsessed racist fringe nutjobs to leap over the sanity edge and resort to violence to make themselves known. If the situation at the southern border isn’t an “invasion,” what exactly could/should we call it? When hundreds of thousands of people arrive at the doorstep demanding entry without justification, identification or reason, isn’t it a potential problem?

Immigration is inherently not a racial issue either, even if the “Alt-right” insists it is. If millions of Europeans were boarding rickety boats to journey across the Atlantic to land in New England or along the Georgia coast, wouldn’t Trump use similar language to describe them? Of course he would! This isn’t a “white” or “brown” dilemma. It’s a human conundrum.

So-called “white nationalism” (or old-fashioned racism) predated Trump and the mindset will endure long after the 45th president turns over the nuclear codes to the 46th. French and his #NeverTrump cohorts took offense at Trump’s in-your-face style as soon as he announced a run for the Oval Office. To say the problem’s gotten worse on Trump’s watch is a total fabrication. The “invasion” hasn’t stopped under Trump either -- if anything, it’s gotten worse. So what’s triggering the nutcases to proceed? It ain’t the man calling the shots or tweeting out his opinions.

The media and Trump’s so-called conservative opponents dream up rationales for behavior that can’t be explained. An insane person doesn’t employ “normal” thought processes to govern his or her deeds. You can step-up efforts to find and identify them before they “snap,” but how would the problem ever truly be solved?

Every president prior to Trump (in their “presidential” capacities) spoke calm, gentle-sounding words about pressing real-life issues -- and yet the acts kept happening. George W. Bush famously described Islam as a “religion of peace”, for example, though it’s never been that and never will to the extremist Muslim elements who view Jihad as the only true interpretation of the texts. Your next door neighbor may be Muslim (as mine is) but it doesn’t mean he’s a terrorist.

And just because an American with white skin believes immigration is out of control doesn’t make him a hater or a good candidate for a mass shooting. To believe otherwise is crazy.

Democrats can and will use these latest episodes to demand more gun control. To them it’s “doing something” about the problem of mass shootings. Conservatives emphasize a different set of fixes -- increased conceal and carry, mental health evaluations and the like. The truth is mass murders will perpetuate as long as there’s a culture that glorifies and tolerates them and makes the perpetrators famous.

Would eliminating Hollywood’s violent productions do the trick? How about requiring everyone to go to church (like they did in pre-revolutionary Virginia)? The dramatically increased incidents of mass murder have coincided with the decline of the American family as well as the culture’s steady movement away from religion and other stability-building institutions. Isn’t this where the real problem lies?

Millions of World War II vets came home from the conflict trained in how to operate just about every kind of weapon imaginable yet they didn’t go around offing innocents because they knew how. Doesn’t this prove there’s something other than access to firearms that’s leading to these tragedies?

The “old America” doesn’t exist anymore. Life is devalued. People spend more time on their smart phones than they do talking with their family members or friends. It’s a detached reality. Where does it end? Is more government the answer? Democrats portend to really, really care about ending “gun violence”, but they don’t have much problem with passing bills that would let newborn babies die if a mother, her doctor and the law allows it. Isn’t this a culture of death?

Sad.

One 2020 Democrat directly blamed Trump for the shootings. Julio Rosas reported at The Washington Examiner, “Democratic New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker blamed President Trump for the mass shooting in El Paso, Texas, claiming he is ‘sowing seeds of hatred in our country’ and has not condemned white supremacy.

“’We have moral bonds and fabric of our country. We have a president of the United States who is particularly responsible. My faith has this idea that you reap what you sow and he is sowing seeds of hatred in our country. This harvest of hate violence that we’re seeing now lies at his feet,’ the Democratic presidential candidate told MSNBC on Sunday.

“’When you have the president from the highest moral office in our land talking about 'invasions' and 'infestations' and 'shithole countries.' The kind of things that come out of his mouth. It harms the moral fabric of our nation. He is responsible,’ Booker added. ‘He is responsible when he has taken no action whatsoever to even condemn white supremacy.’”

Booker’s wrong on just about everything here. He’s running for the presidential nomination in a party that talks and promises big but delivers next to nothing of tangible value… so it’s understandable. Rosas’ report also contained similar “It’s Trump’s fault” quotes from brainless “Beto” O’Rourke too. Enough said.

Maybe if Democrats ceased deifying illegal immigrants, then deranged would-be criminals would stop writing manifestos and shooting up public places. Is this the answer? Are Democrats culpable?

Something’s definitely wrong in America when individuals set off on mass murder rampages. The challenge lies with identifying a true cause and devising solutions that are both politically palatable and will actually address the problems. Blaming guns or the president is the easy way out. Can’t we talk about the culture of death instead?

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