AP reported earlier today that despite fresh opposition from the National Rifle Association, the Obama administration is assembling proposals to curb gun violence which would include a ban on sales of assault weapons, limits on high-capacity ammunition magazines and universal background checks for gun buyers.
Sketching out details of the plan earlier today, Vice President Joe Biden said he would give President Obama a set of reommendations by next Tuesday. These proposals come in the wake of yet another school shooting; this time at a high school in California.
Opposition from the abundantly well-funded and politically powerful NRA underscores the challenges awaiting the White House if it seeks congressional approval for limiting guns and ammunition. Obama can use his executive powers to act alone on some gun measures, but his options on the proposals opposed by the NRA are limited without Congress' cooperation.
The consensus between the two factions was a concurrence to keep guns out of the hands of criminals and people with mental health issues. The NRA, however, is diametrically opposed to broad restrictions on high capacity magazines and assault weapons.
Biden's proposals are also expected to include recommendations to address mental health care and violence on television and in movies and video games. Those issues, in fact, have wide support from gun rights groups and pro-gun lawmakers.
Ultimately, in the case of school shootings, the onus is on the parents. Sadly, we can't impose regulations on faulty parenting but there should be clear signs if your child is planning on shooting up his/her classroom. Violent video games and movies/music/TV do nothing but exacerbate an already bad situation. You can't regulate these art forms because they are entertainment and that is their sole purpose. All we can do as a society is tag a parental advisory label on the content and pray for the best.
Maybe comedian Chris Rock was onto something when he declared what we really need is bullet control. That way, at least, there would be no confusion about the end result: "That fool better be dead. I put thirty thousand dollars worth of bullets in his ass."
If only this entire issue were a joke albeit a cruel one...if only.