Stunning poll numbers show overwhelming public support for simple gun reform. 92% of Americans would support expanded background checks, 87% would support banning guns for felons or people with a history of mental health problems, and 85% would support a ban for people on federal watch-lists.
These numbers are nearly identical between democrats and republicans. Interesting, right? And not just that, but also among men and women, rich and poor, urban and rural, young and old. This is an issue that completely transcends demographics and unites nearly all of us.
This is particularly fascinating because as a nation, we seem to be in a period of almost unprecedented division, on all major issues. But in this case, not only do we have clear agreement, we have nearly reached unanimous agreement. And not just agreement on a general belief, agreement on several specific solutions… for a major public safety issue.
Yet Congress has failed to pass any of these solutions into law. This begs the (rhetorical) question, who are they really representing?
Money in politics has had such a corrosive effect on our government, to the point that 9 out of 10 Americans can agree on solutions to a prevalent issue, and our elected leaders won’t act on it.
The root of the problem lies in the modern election process, which has become so severely convoluted that it now structurally ensures that the candidates who raise the most money are extremely likely to win elections. And the best way to raise money? Appeal to corporations.
This perpetuating cycle leaves us with chambers full of elected officials continually coerced into prioritizing corporate interests over the interests of the public.
The current system allows and encourages this legalized form of corruption, dismantling the core aspects of democracy, perfectly exhibited this week in Congress’s failure to pass the most basic and incremental forms of gun control.
Just as separation of church and state (helps) keep our government free of religious influence, it’s time for separation of corporation and state, to ensure our government is run free of corporate influence.