Ted Cruz, one of three Republican senators who vowed to filibuster gun control legislation after the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary shooting left 26 dead, now says he’s “fervently” praying for the families of the 18 children and three adults killed in yet another mass shooting on Tuesday at an elementary school in his home state of Texas. But, of course, he is still scheduled to speak at the National Rifle Association’s convention in Houston on Friday and still has no interest in doing anything about the insanely disproportionate amount of guns we allow people to carry in this country.
Let’s just unpack the “constitutional rights” aspect of this debate, briefly. The Second Amendment of the Constitution reads in full: “A well-regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.”
The point of the Second Amendment was to allow the people to defend themselves against a dictator—not to be able to buy assault rifles and high-capacity magazines at will and carry them around wherever.
“There’s been a concerted effort by gun rights organizations to enact gun-friendly legislation in the states. And they do so using the rhetoric of the Second Amendment, even though nothing about the Second Amendment necessarily requires the state to pass such legislation,” Darrell Miller, an expert on gun law at Duke University School of Law, told ABC news.
Allison Anderman, senior counsel at the Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence, added that the Second Amendment has become “a rallying cry. It’s easy. It’s a sound bite. But the Second Amendment gets thrown around politically in a way that’s not based in law.”
Gun-loving Republicans like Ted Cuz have suggested all kinds of answers to the problem of mass shootings in this country (there have already been more than 200 since the beginning of this year). Like, perhaps we should have armed cops at every elementary school in the country?
That obviously didn’t work in this case, though. Law enforcement was on the scene, and the shooter made his way into classrooms anyway to kill 18 children.
Politicians like Cruz love to claim that they’re “pro-life” while making it clear that they will do anything in their power to protect individuals’ right to own guns at the cost of actual children being slaughtered, year by year, in this country.
Fuck you, Ted Cruz. Fuck you, Republicans. The right to send your kid to school and not live in terror of never seeing that child again should always supersede a person’s right to keep a gun as a toy, absent of any threat that they will ever need to form a militia to overthrow the government. Period.