I’ll be damned. The adults are back in the room.
It’s as if we have been having a raucous frat party for the past couple of decades that looks like it’s about to end. Naive Americans let the NRA, the gun nuts and the libertarian bullies in to join in the fun, and they’ve been wrecking the place ever since.
Last week, a group of teenage mass-shooting survivors played the part of the responsible adults. They’ve been kicking gun-rights extremists butts for days now. They’re determined to kick the bums out of Congress, the White House, state legislatures and the board room of the NRA.
Many have tried. All have failed.
Not this time, however. News on Wednesday that sporting goods giant Dick’s would quit selling assault-style weapons, military grade ammo and all guns to those under 21 was a serious music stopper.
Pack it up, NRA, and get the hell out? It won’t be that easy. But it looks like it’s no longer impossible.
The amazing turnaround followed a successful campaign started by these amazing teenagers to boycott anything related to the NRA. Stunningly, American business giants like Delta, Hertz, Wyndham Hotels and one of the country’s biggest banks publicly announced they’re willing to throw the NRA out.
As well they should. The NRA has not only held America hostage for decades, they’ve held their own venerable organization at gunpoint, too.
My grandpa was a member of the NRA. Back then, and since it was created after the Civil War, its mission was to make Americans better marksmen and promote gun safety. It was much more like the Boy Scouts and much less like brutal third-world dictatorship this massive lobbying machine has become.
It wasn’t until relatively recently that anyone believed all this NRA history revisioning about founding fathers wanting to make sure you could buy a bazooka if you damned well felt like it. The Second Amendment has always been about making sure we could rally the community to fight off the Brits, especially if they stormed the federal government.
All this “peel it from my dying fingers” claptrap came from a libertarian extremist movement in the 1980s. People more paranoid than your great-aunt after eating too many Colorado edibles started taking over state legislative seats and the NRA and, well, welcome to your nightmare. The NRA and now Congress and the Colorado state Senate are run by people who live in constant fear of a government takeover. Takeover by whom is unclear, seeing as how they are the government. But they’re convinced, and they convince too many of the preoccupied or empty headed among us that if we aren’t all equipped with concealed assault weapons, Armageddon will be upon us.
Insane? They want to arm teachers. Ask any cop, it takes years of training and a very rare and admirable temperament to be effective in a SWAT situation. Gun-range practice and a good talking to for teachers is craziness that not even libertarian patron-saint goddess Ayn Rand would swallow.
No. The NRA and their cockamamie cohorts have come undone.
We’ve listened to this insanity so long that we either just tune it out or start to believe that, yeah, I need a gun in my pants when I shop at Walmart.
No, you don’t. And what none of us need are military assault weapons, or firearms that get a certain segment of the population hot and bothered because they look like assault weapons. And we certainly don’t need the NRA or elected officials demanding we honor the ammo-erotic rights of these freaks at the expense of innocent human lives.
If you’re not inspired by my rant, listen to someone who lost their beloved son because we let the NRA keep us hostage in our own house for all these years.
“Dear Mr. Edward Stack, CEO @DICKS Sporting Goods Inc, my son Alex Teves was one of 12 murdered with an AR15 in a movie theater. Thank you for putting lives over profits and doing the right thing by removing weapons of war from your stores. You sir, are a hero. #NoCongressNeeded”
Caren Teves of Aurora sent that out to the world in a Tweet Feb. 28. Her son, Alex, was gunned down during the Aurora theater shooting.
Dear Mr. Edward Stack, CEO @DICKS Sporting Goods Inc, my son Alex Teves was one of 12 murdered with an AR15 in a movie theater. Thank you for putting lives over profits and doing the right thing by removing weapons of war from your stores. You sir, are a hero. #NoCongressNeeded https://t.co/n9xd8B1xFA
— Caren Teves (@carenteves) February 28, 2018
You better get it, America. You’ve been lied to by the NRA and those elected officials who support their delusion for a very long time. You can keep right on drinking the ammophilic Kool-Aid. Or you can listen to the people at Dick’s, Delta Airlines and tens of thousands of gun-violence victims — before you become one.
Follow @EditorDavePerry on Twitter and Facebook or reach him at 303-750-7555 or dperry@SentinelColorado.com