Dear America, are you joking?

Melissa Tandiwe Myambo

1) Dear America, more guns = more violence.

2) Less guns = less violence.

3) I would post a link to some research to prove this FACT but your congress, representatives you voted for, outlawed federally-funded research on gun-related violence in 1996 with something called the Dickey Amendment which mandates that “none of the funds made available for injury prevention and control at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) may be used to advocate or promote gun control.”

Why would they do such a thing?

4) Your congress banned research into gun violence after they were lobbied by the NRA (National Rifle Association). America, you have a big problem with gun violence — there are 323 million people in your country and 265 million guns. But, America, you have an even bigger problem. Big money owns your politicians.

Democracy — rule of the people — has been replaced by plutocracy — rule of the rich.

5) The NRA and other pro-gun lobby groups have so successfully hijacked the conversation about gun violence with their well-funded culture wars that they have put forward this illogical, counterfactual proposition as common sense, self-evident truth: more guns = less violence. More “good guys” need guns and then we’ll all be safe as safe can be!

6) If you believe that more guns = less violence (or if you believe that you can sell more guns based on this premise), you say, “Oh, crazy people are buying assault weapons and shooting up schools. Solution = we need more guns in the school. Teachers, bring your guns!”

7) Shooters are attacking churches and you say, “Why isn’t the pastor packing some firepower? Why aren’t the deacons getting firearms training? What about the ushers? Why are they just standing around? They need to shoot back. More guns = less violence. Everyone knows that.”

8) Shooters are attacking concerts and you say, “It’s so irresponsible that the performer and her back-up dancers didn’t have a cache of weapons on the stage to shoot back because we all know that more guns = less violence and of course, less deaths because when more people are shooting, less people die in the crossfire. We all know that!”

9) America, if you want to stop this sick joke and restore logic to your gun debate, if you want to make policy based on factual gun research, if you want to repeal the Dickey Amendment, if you want your Congress to represent YOU, the majority of Americans whom, according to polls, want reasonable gun control, you will have to get big money out of your politics.

10) Getting big money out of politics requires campaign finance reform so that politicians cannot be bought and sold by billionaires and special interest groups…He who pays the piper calls the tune.

11) Right now, America is a plutocracy where the wealthy rule and tell you that tax cuts for billionaires are wonderful for the middle class, that no health insurance means you’re free (not to have health insurance), that they’re clearing the swamp when they’re the swampiest swamp creatures ever, and that more and more guns equals more and more greatness…

12) But, America, this is a FACT, less guns = less violence. If you agree that gun violence is a problem, the ONLY SOLUTION IS LESS GUNS. Propositions to increase the general public’s safety that do not address this core truth are ideological hogwash and cynical propaganda. See the stats from other countries which have responsible gun laws. Guess what? They have much less death caused by gunfire = less children are being murdered by gun-wielding terrorists.

So stop joking around.

It’s not funny.

People are dying.