People Want Political Solutions to Gun Violence

At least 58 people are dead and more than 500 are injured after a mass shooting last night at a country music festival on the Las Vegas Strip. The shooter opened fire from a window of the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino.

Anyone who doesn’t find this acceptable is going to ask for some kind of political action. People may differ greatly about what kind of political action would be effective in preventing similar tragedies in the future, but nearly everyone’s first inclination is to seek some of kind of solution. The political sphere is the most natural and obvious place to start.

Some people want to find a way to delegitimize this natural human impulse.

Others, like the governor of Kentucky, want to direct that impulse away from gun regulation.

Still others recognize that maybe today isn’t the best time to begin running pro-gun commercials on behalf of a political candidate, for example, Virginia gubernatorial candidate Ed Gillespie:

It’s going to be hard for the NRA to argue that the concert-goers would have been safe if they’d all been armed—their typical response after gun massacres in movies theaters or night clubs.

Despite that, reading through the responses to this massacre on social media, I felt like I was trapped on Groundhog Day. The same people are making the same arguments and counterarguments they always make. I have no reason to believe any of it will be more or less effective than it has been in the past.

I don’t really know what I can say that would be original or effective. I wish I did, but I don’t.

All I can really say is that it’s obnoxious to tell people not to immediately think in political terms about something like this. Anyone who doesn’t think in political terms about what just happened in Nevada is a monster.

Martin Longman

Martin Longman is the web editor for the Washington Monthly and the main blogger at Booman Tribune.