We have all been so encouraged by the young people, led by the survivors of the Parkland, Florida, mass school shooting, and we should be encouraged, we should be proud of these young people. They are the first generation, with the possible exception of the Vietnam generation, to take a firm stand, to make their voices heard, to say, “ENOUGH!!!”
Meanwhile, back at the ranch … er, the National Rifle Association, commonly known as the NRA, guess what? Donations to the NRA have more than tripled since February! In February, the group reported donations of $779,063, and in March, $2.4 million. That is more than they have raised in any month since at least the year 2000.
Why, you ask? It’s what I call the push/push-back. The students are the ‘push’, the momentum that is having a real impact, their voices have already led to new controls on gun ownership in Florida. And those who cherish their right to own guns more than they value their own children are the ‘push-back’, scared that they may lose the right to own an automatic weapon. They might well be in danger of losing the ability to plow down hundreds of people in just a minute or two. They might even … gasp … have to submit to an extended background check and wait 3-5 days before taking possession of their newly purchased gun. And God forbid that their 18-year-old son, Bubba, might have to wait until he is 21 years of age to buy his first gun. And because they are scared of losing their right, they are turning to their protector, Wayne LaPierre and the NRA.
The NRA is short on morals and values, but they are by no means short on marketing skills, for they knew just how to play their cards. They used the protests of our youth to their advantage, used them, just as Donald Trump used terrorism and terrorists, to instill fear into those gun-lovin’ fools. “The threat to our freedom has never been more real,” reads one social media post that includes a link to its membership page. Another post says that gun control proponents “are manipulating and exploiting children as part of their plan to DESTROY the Second Amendment.”
And their marketing campaign worked. $1.9 million of the $2.4 million the NRA reported as donations in March came from small donors, those giving $200 or less.
Want to know what you likely haven’t seen in your local paper or heard on the nightly news about school shootings in the U.S. since the February 14th shooting in Parkland?
- February 24: Savannah, Georgia — A person was shot on the campus of Savannah State University and taken to a nearby hospital where he later died.
- February 27: Itta Bena, Mississippi — A person was shot in a rec center at Mississippi Valley State University. The injury was non-life-threatening.
- February 27: Norfolk, Virginia — A student at Norfolk State University was shot from an adjacent dorm room while he was doing homework. He was not seriously injured.
- March 2: Mount Pleasant, Michigan — Two people were shot to death at a dormitory on the campus of Central Michigan University.
- March 7: Jackson, Mississippi — A student was shot inside a dormitory at Jackson State University. His injuries were not life-threatening.
- March 7: Birmingham, Alabama — One student was killed and another critically wounded after an accidental shooting during dismissal time at Huffman High School.
- March 8: Mobile, Alabama — One person was hospitalized after a shooting at an apartment building on the campus of the University of South Alabama.
- March 13: Seaside, California — A teacher accidentally discharged a gun during a public safety class at Seaside High School, injuring a student.
- March 20: Lexington Park, Maryland — An armed student shot two others at Great Mills High School before a school resource officer fired a round at the shooter. The shooter was killed. One of the students, 16-year-old girl Jaelynn Willey, was taken off life support two days later.
- April 9: Gloversville, New York — A student shot another student with a BB gun in Gloversville Middle School.
- April 12: Raytown, Missouri — A man was shot in the stomach in the parking lot of Raytown South Middle School during a track meet.
- April 20: Ocala, Florida — A student at Forest High School was wounded and a suspect taken into custody.
In just two short months, people!!! Two months, twelve school shootings!!!
Those who place such value on the ability to own a gun, especially a weapon that can kill hundreds inside of minutes, do not belong to the same branch of humanity to which I belong. And just how many of these who will take their grocery money to support the NRA and keep their precious guns … how many of those are “evangelical Christians” who scream at the tops of their lungs that every abortion is murder??? But killing people with guns is okey-dokey, hunky-dorey???
Need I say more?