Thus begins an opinion article by the editorial board of the Minneapolis Star Tribune.
As readers following the Justine Damond case know, The Strib, as it is called by local residents, is very much a progressive enterprise, a former newspaper, as Andrew Klavan is fond of calling such endeavors. It should therefore be unsurprising The Strib is denigrating prayer and boosting gun control. More and more these days, both views are articles of faith for the left. The context for the article is, of course, the murderous attack on a small Baptist Church in equally small Sutherland Springs, TX.
Offering prayers is a touching gesture from ordinary citizens expressing sympathies with the grieving. Coming from lawmakers empowered to do more, the gesture is an empty one, reeking of political cowardice.
The article, which refers to a “semiautomatic assault rifle,” summarizes a few recent attacks, and observes:
Now, barely a month after that, another lone gunman has added to the deadly toll of this nation’s obsession with firearms.
The Strib’s editors betray their disdain for deplorables. Americans are no more obsessed with firearms than they are automobiles, indoor plumbing, toilet paper, nicely packed groceries or any other common consumer product. The difference is America, unlike any other nation, has a Second Amendment designed to give the common man the power first to deter, and if necessary, overthrow tyranny. A worthy benefit of that recognized unalienable right is self-defense, something Americans do as many as two million times a year with firearms, virtually always without firing a shot. One wonders why The Strib didn’t mention that? Oh yes, and any semi-automatic firearm cannot, by definition, be an “assault rifle.” Aren’t even former newspapers supposed to pride themselves on accuracy?
The response from leading Republicans has become all too typical. When an Uzbek immigrant drove his car into a crowd of bicyclists in New York last week, President Donald Trump immediately called for the death penalty and changes to immigration laws. But on Sunday, confronted with yet another white American male who exorcised his personal demons by killing innocents, Trump said only that this was not a ‘guns situation,’ but a ‘mental health problem at the highest level.
Imagine that: the death penalty for a premeditated Muslim terrorist mass murderer who planned his attack for months. Imagine too anyone thinking changes to an insane immigration law written by Democrats/anti-Second Amendment fanatics, which actually, randomly, gives terrorists from nations known to breed and harbor terrorists free passage to America, might be a good thing. Truly this Trump is a madman! And how dare he blame the Texas attack on mental health issues! How embarrassing for The Strib we’re discovering more every day about the severe mental illness of the killer, who would have wanted his name mentioned here. The Strib, in its efforts to destroy the Second Amendment and disarm deplorables, is glad to give the killer the publicity and infamy he sought. But, as Ironhawk said, they, like all legacy media, believe its their job to cover such stories, with a pillow, until they stop moving. And it’s all because Trump! Everything is all because Trump.
Other Republicans have attributed Kelley’s actions to ‘evil.’ That sounds overwhelming, almost fatalistic. What can mere legislators do, after all, against pure evil? But this, too, should be recognized for the dodge it is. Kelley may have been ‘deranged,’ as Trump said, or ‘evil,’ as others have said.
Calling the killer’s acts evil is hardly a “dodge.” Rather, it is a statement of the accuracy and attention to fact lacking in The Strib’s pages and in its editorial. This is, however, understandable. For the left, everything bad is the inevitable result of too little leftism, too little government, too few entitlements, too little ineffective and wasteful spending. Noting the evil acts of an atheist, who was not, by the way, a member of the NRA, or apparently, a Republican—if he were, the media would be trumpeting it 24/7—is also another intolerable habit of conservatives: expecting personal responsibility, something to which the Left reacts like vampires to holy water. The Strib allows that the killer, whose name they are pleased to repeat, “may have been ‘deranged.’ One wonders what was their first clue, and wouldn’t that have something to do with mental illness?
The gun culture in this country was not always like this. The frenzy of gun-buying has been stoked for years by those who somehow consider firearms the ultimate expression of personal liberty.
Is The Strib really so clueless, or are they merely congenitally dishonest? In recent years, Americans have been buying record amounts of guns, ammo and accessories because Democrat politicians have convinced them the Second Amendment—fundamental, unalienable liberties—are in danger. They’ve convinced them they may well need to act on the primary reason the Founders wrote the Second Amendment to acknowledge that unalienable right, by resisting a tyrannical government to protect and defend the Constitution. The Strib is, however, at least partially on target—an analogy I’m sure they’d hate—in sneeringly observing firearms are an expression of personal liberty. Leftists know it only too well, which is why they never cease in their efforts to deny arms to the honest, law-abiding and patriotic. It’s so much easier to enslave deplorables when they can’t effectively resist.
The Strib concludes by dishonestly comparing the death rates in Japan and America. Making comparisons of America with other nations is always specious, and particularly so with Japan, a nation that does not welcome immigration—a holy sacrament for leftists—and which is rigidly jealous of cultural obedience. In fact, Japan’s suicide rate—the cause of most deaths by violence–is substantially higher than America’s; they just don’t commit suicide with guns. And of course, Japan has no Second Amendment. Japanese mobsters, as with American criminals, have no difficulty obtaining guns.
The mass shootings are coming so frequently now that they fail to provoke the shock and horror they once did. The grief is no less, but shock has been replaced by a now-familiar ache, and a mounting sense of nameless fear, that no place — not an elementary school, not a church, not a concert — is safe.
That is not freedom.
Those that believe safety an absolute are deluded. It, like life, is not guaranteed. The police exist to investigate crimes after they occur, and to deter crimes by their presence, when and where they can be present. They have no legal obligation to protect anyone, and no government can guarantee the safety of any citizen. Government’s obligation is to provide for the common good and safety. Our individual safety, and that of those we love, has ever been our own business.
The Left’s interest in safety is intensely opportunistic and political. Can they be so dense as not to understand the nature of such things? Can they be equally dense in the nature of their flawed understanding of the Constitution? They demand politicians—many of whom are surely among the least of us—“do something,” and that something is the destruction of a fundamental liberty, a liberty recently acknowledged by the Supreme Court. The death toll of Sutherland Springs is reenacted many times over every year in Chicago, yet the Left has nothing to say because Chicago is a Democrat-controlled stronghold, and most of the violence is perpetrated by members of a favored Democrat victim/identity group. Where’s the urgency to “do something” in Chicago?
The Left sees prayer, at best, as ineffectual, but not with the pragmatism of Huckleberry Finn, who, praying for fish hooks and receiving none, thought prayer ineffective. Most leftists think those that pray are superstitious, deluded and mentally deficient. They believe they use prayer as leftists use any political device, as a means to an end, as a distraction or obfuscation useful in obtaining their policy goals to seize and keep power. Those that pray have no such motives. For them, prayer is outside the realm of Earthly concerns, and is a powerful force for good in and of itself. It substitutes for nothing, and speaks to the decency and altruism of those that go to it in times of trouble, or in gratitude. It is a matter of faith, as is the understanding that God does not always answer prayer in ways we expect or comprehend.
Two things are certain: even as the left insults and mocks the prayerful—and God—the prayerful will pray for those that denigrate them, in the sincere hope they may one day understand the nature of faith and feel its blessings. The same cannot be said for leftists, whose faith is ever in false messiahs like Barack Obama and tyrannical government, and whose sacrament is the demonization of all that do not agree with them.
In the demands of the left for legislators to blatantly violate the Constitution, and in their sneering scorn for people that sincerely seek help for the helpless and succor for the hurting, they reveal themselves as neither noble nor civilized. Instead, they reinforce the very real concerns of patriots who prepare for the day leftists manage to render the Constitution mere fading ink on yellowing paper, an anachronism of a bygone age. Then, as Thomas Jefferson so wisely observed, will the tree of liberty be refreshed by the blood of patriots and tyrants.
We pray that never comes to pass; that—the ability and will to pray–is freedom (Note for our leftist friends: First Amendment).