Important headline(s) for February 28th
Bottom Line: These are stories you don't want to miss and my hot takes on them...
Let FDLE conduct the probes, lawmakers. Focus on gun control - Miami Herald
Hot Take: This headline and story is probably about as close as I'll get to what I believe is the most appropriate path at this point. If the headline read Let FDLE conduct the probes, lawmakers. Focus on passing the Governor's reform plan I'd be about right. Two important points are tied together in the premise of this story. First, rather than rushing to final judgement regarding law enforcement's handling of the response to the shooting at Stoneman Douglas - let's have a proper and thorough investigation. How much more have we learned about the response just this week? There's clearly a lot more to the story than we knew. Rushing to judgement, especially one that would at least have the optics of being partisan in nature, is about the last thing we need right now. Sheriff Israel has long been a controversial figure due to his willingness to advocate for policy a bit more publicly than many sheriffs and because he's been known to have political associations with many key players on the left. None of that is relevant here. Maybe he and his department are responsible for failures. Maybe they're not. A proper investigation should reveal all that's needed to render appropriate judgments. Doing something significant in advance of that information won't bring back the 17 lost lives regardless at this point and one might imagine that internally a full vetting of protocol is being evaluated lest there be any potential future failures while this is playing out. Now for the gun control vs. reform agenda case.
First, as I've pointed out in a series of stories over the past week, a solid majority of adults want action taken. 66% of adults are in favor of taking action generally. Regarding the specifics of Governor Scott's agenda, the numbers are much higher among Floridians. In accredited polling anywhere from 57% to 97% support exists for the key tenants of his plan. For that reason, it would be sensible for representatives to be focused on working off of his proposal and making it a focus of the final two weeks of the session. Now, regarding the people who seemingly are single minded and focused on gun control let's have a few get real moments shall we?
Nikolas Cruz is responsible for the death of 17 people
A gun doesn't do anything unless someone uses it
An AR-15 isn't an "assault rifle". It also isn't a military weapon
Guns aren't new
Mental health issues aren't new
The proliferation of these attacks are new so clearly there are other catalysts involved above and beyond guns
Three times more people are killed by knives every year than are killed by all types of rifles combined - so where is your cry for banning assault knives?
102 people are killed per day in auto accidents - where are your cry's for banning assault cars?
Now to be clear I'm supportive of some of the proposed gun control measures. There are numerous inconsistencies in laws that I've never understood. I do believe people should be informed and capable before purchasing and using a gun. But here's the deal. The difference between knives, cars and guns among those blinded by ignorance and an agenda, is that you don't question the knives or the cars. You acknowledge that people are responsible. The same is true of guns but being blinded by ignorance - if I'm being generous doesn't change the reality. From here on out you're getting a solid dose of knife and car facts from me if you want to begin and end the conversation with gun control.
There are two sides to every story and one side to every fact. It's about time they were considered and applied to this conversation. I've been patient for long enough.