When last we checked in on David “thereisnospoon” Atkins he was full of shit. He’s posing as a journalist these days, but he’s still so full of shit he squishes when he walks.
On most issues a majority of voters agree with liberal positions. These progressive stances are actually also held by a majority of Democratic legislators—but usually not quite enough to overcome an alliance between holdout conservative Democrats and the Republicans. The electoral theory of change suggests if one elects more Democrats in place of Republicans and, more importantly, more progressive Democrats in place of the bad ones, better legislation will follow. By contrast, engagement and visibility theory suggests that people need to be informed and persuaded about issues to grow support, then urged to disrupt and annoy their legislators such that those legislators will be shamed into action they would otherwise avoid.
But gun politics in the United States shows above all the weaknesses and limits of the engagement model. The vast majority of Americans support commonsense gun laws. Some basic provisions are even supported by a majority of Republicans, yet never get passed into law. Numerous organizations have engaged in countless petitions and demonstrations to shame legislators into action from a variety of perspectives, but it essentially never works. And frankly, if the grieving parents of dozens of dead children aren’t enough to shame centrist and conservative legislators, it’s difficult to think that anything less obviously outrageous could.
The reason that the United States cannot seem to do anything about guns is simply that the NRA and the vocal minority of the nation’s gun owners mobilize to vote on the issue, while the large majority that favors gun safety laws does not. Politicians of good will fear the NRA, and for good reason. Politicians of bad will do not fear the Brady Campaign or MoveOn.org. The NRA has the ability to unseat legislators who don’t do its bidding. The Brady Campaign does not. Moveon.org does not. It’s really that simple.
Whenever Leftists fail to win at the ballot box they blame it on evil rich people and stupid voters. (That is why many of the left’s biggest victories took place in court rather than in Congress.) It’s kinda ironic because the left has been successful in selling their agenda in general terms. They have nearly hegemonic control over the mass media, with conservatives limited to talk radio, Fox News and a few newspapers and magazines.
The problem is when you go from general terms to the specific laws and programs the Left is promoting. Ask a bunch of voters is they support “commonsense guns laws” and you will find that the vast majority of them will agree. Ask them if they support a specific proposed new gun law and that will quickly start to change. Calling something “commonsense” doesn’t make it so.
The fact is that the overwhelming majority of the voters support the right to keep and bear arms. They want to see guns kept out of the hands of criminals, crazy people and children, but they don’t want to ban guns completely. Hang around some gun control advocates and you will soon discover that they consider completely banning guns to be commonsense.
Obviously (to the Left) anyone who does not agree with them is stupid and/or evil. So they spend their time plotting how to get around the will of the people so they can enact laws and programs that the voters are too stupid to realize are good for them.
Meanwhile, the corrupt crong capitalist oligarchy that actually controls Washington DC keeps going merrily along, lining their own pockets.
Have a nice Monday.