A person who picks up a gun and just starts taking people out has become unhinged.
That simple truth eludes us time and time again whenever a media-spotlighted shooting catches the public's attention.
When U.S. Rep. Gabby Giffords was shot by a crazed gunman at a Tucson, Ariz., constituent meeting, Democrats screamed about the “climate of hate” fostered by evil Republicans that encouraged the gunman to act, even though he seemed not to care one whit about politics of any brand. Why, Sarah Palin's campaign site talked about “targeting” the opposition, so obviously it was her fault!
This time around, the wounded congressman was a Republican, House Majority Whip Steve Scalise, and the gunman, 66-year-old James Hodgkinson, did have a political motive. He was a bitter fan of socialist Bernie Sanders who had a seething disgust with Republicans in general and President Trump in particular. This gave many Republicans a chance to marvel at Democrats' eerie silence about the “climate of hate” this time around and a few of them to, yes, blame Democrats for creating a climate of hate.
No opportunity should be wasted, so of course the usual suspects are out there lecturing us again about the virtues of gun control. John Rosenthal, co-founder of the Newton, Mass.-based Stop Handgun Violence, said he hoped the incident would motivate Congress to pass stricter gun laws, including universal background checks and reinstating the federal ban on assault-type weapons.
As usual in the wake of such horrendous acts, there were calls for the nation to calm down and treat political opponents better, and members of Congress engaged in a rare show of unity. Democrats actually got together and prayed for Scalise and the other victims.
Sadly, no one thinks the sense of unity will last.