Talking Points Memo leads with that story at noon today:
In rural southern Kentucky, some children get their first guns even before they start first grade. In this case, the rifle was made by a company that sells guns specifically for children, in colors ranging from plain brown to hot pink to royal blue to multi-color swirls.
This gun story blew me away. A five-year-old wielding a deadly weapon is bad enough. That he kills his little sister with it is breath-takingly shocking. But I’m still reeling over the marketing of guns specifically to children and increasing their appeal with bright colors.
As a city-dweller lucky enough never to have suffered an assault or had my home broken into by an intruder, Second-Amendment rights are out of my personal ken. Americans no longer have to protect their homesteads from marauding Indians (Native Americans defending themselves, but that’s another story) or foreign soldiers. I see no reason for ordinary people to own guns, let alone carry them around with them, unless they mean to hunt or shoot for sport.
Companies like the ones who enabled one pre-schooler to kill another, who aim their gun sales at little kids, thereby augmenting their profits now and even in the future by perpetuating a pervasive gun culture — companies like that pay the NRA protect their business. How can clear-headed people not be persuaded by the massacre of innocents that sales and ownership of firearms should be regulated and restricted? How much money would it take to outshout the NRA and convince gun enthusiasts that more firepower in the hands of the public increases the opportunities for tragedy? How does greater revenue justify sacrificing even a single innocent life? And how do lawmakers who represent constituencies that favor the regulation of at least some aspects of gun ownership — how do they obstruct voters’ demands to favor and support the NRA?
Some of them, like Kelly Ayotte (R-NH), are feeling the backlash from irate voters. If gun-safety advocates like well financed Gabrielle Giffords and Michael Bloomberg have their way, more gun-safety obstructionists may face heavy lifting at the polls.