Lacey Smith

Going on the record

In Current Events, Politics on December 17, 2012 at 12:29 pm

I’ve decided that I’m going to strive for a normal posting schedule of Tuesdays & Thursdays, but I want something on the record before things start happening.

I watched President Obama’s speech at the memorial service on Sunday and in a “never let a good crisis go to waste” moment, his remarks turned political.

Besides sharing his community parenting views (that is that we cannot be good parents without the help of the community and that parenting is a group affair), he said we were not doing enough to protect our kids. He said that we had to “change” and that he would use the power of his office to stop the violence.

Translation: he intends to take away gun access by executive order.

Sometime in the coming weeks, I believe Obama will attempt to push legislation through Congress limiting access to assault weapons (a term that has no official definition). When that fails in the House, he will say Congress has failed to protect our children and we cannot wait on them. He will then sign an executive order that significantly limits access to automatic and semi-automatic guns and high capacity magazines.

I believe he will also make it harder for the average citizen – especially anyone with any history of mental illness – to purchase any kind of gun.

We need to have real conversations about gun control, about mental illness and about how they work together. That conversation needs to include more than simply stricter gun laws (should we arm teachers? how does the community come together – not as a collective forced to but as individuals choosing to – to support those struggling with mental illnesses? how do we balance the 2nd amendment and public safety?).

As I predicted on Friday, this tragedy has already become politicized. The president is going to make changes to gun laws come hell or high water.

All that remains to be seen is just how far he will go.

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