December 15, 2018

Forget Pie-in-the-Sky. Try Real-World Proposals

Ben Shapiro, author and editor-in-chief at The Daily Wire

The Parkland, Fla., mass shooting breaks the heart of any decent person. The morning after the shooting, as I got my daughter ready for school, she gave me a hug — and all I could think about was the fact that more than a dozen sets of parents will never be able to do that again for their children.

And yet in the aftermath of the shooting, the conversation has again devolved into accusations of callousness. Gun control advocates insisted that gun control opponents are uncaring monsters who simply don’t care when children are shot to death; they suggest that the members of the NRA, law-abiding citizens, are somehow responsible when an evil criminal massacres classmates. Meanwhile, gun control opponents on the right, reacting to the emotional blowback they’ve received from the left, turtle into intransigence.

None of this is helpful.

Here’s what would be helpful: some actual, real-world proposals with evidence to support them. Not pie-in-the-sky proposals like the revocation of the Second Amendment or full-scale gun confiscation — those aren’t going to happen. Realistic ways to prevent violence like this again. We should start with school security — if it’s good enough for your kid attending Jewish day school in Los Angeles, it should be available to kids attending public schools. We should move on to mental health checks — gun violence restraining orders, which allow relatives of those who are a danger to themselves and others to apply to courts to temporarily prevent threatening people from obtaining guns. We should discuss the lack of transparency in law enforcement — the FBI was given two specific warnings about the shooter in Parkland, and did nothing; in California, tens of thousands of people banned from owning guns have access to them. We should talk about media coverage — we at The Daily Wire already have decided not to run the photos or names of mass shooters in the future, so as not to provide them the attention they seek.

But it all starts with recognizing that we want the same thing: to stop the murder of innocent children. Any conversation that begins with the assumption that your political opponent doesn’t care about dead kids isn’t a conversation — it’s a counterproductive tactic designed to quash serious proposals in favor of posturing.