Sometime today, someone will say that because the Monterey Park shooter used an illegal weapon, that proves that gun laws don’t work because blah-blah-blah. And perhaps the Baton Rouge shooting will be ascribed to some grudge held against the Dion nightclub because it wouldn’t play “Disco Inferno” twice last week. The simple fact is that this kind of thing doesn’t happen twice in the same weekend anywhere else in the world, except in places where actual war is being waged.
The United States is the only country on the planet where these things happen, and as far as we know, the only country on any planet where the people doing the shooting have a de facto political lobby. Which is why these two unfortunate exercises in Second Amendment freedoms happened one atop the other. The Tree of Liberty was well-watered this weekend.
This country is in love with its guns. It is in love with the way they feel, with the way it makes the person with the gun feel. The power, drawn from (if we’re lucky) vicarious violence, is intoxicating. The country is drunk on it, and even vicarious violence makes me wonder if we’re devolving faster than the glaciers are.