The Disarmed President

Last Saturday, following a shooting in a family planning clinic in Colorado, where three died and nine were injured, U.S. President Barack Obama said: “Enough is enough. We have to do something about the easy accessibility of weapons of war on our streets. This is not normal; we can’t let it become normal.”

Yes, enough is enough. Four days later, in San Bernardino, California, an even bloodier shooting killed 14 and injured 21. The president of the United States of America said, “We’re going to have to, I think, search ourselves as a society to make sure that we can take basic steps that would make it harder — not impossible, but harder — for individuals to get access to weapons.” Wow! That’s some statement! We’re going to have to search ourselves. Oooooh! The arms dealers must be shaking with fear. We’re going to have to search ourselves. Well, I hope so! This year, in the U.S., there have been 355 shootings in 336 days! It really is time to search ourselves. Perhaps we should even take action. But that’s more difficult. We’ve already tried.

Three years ago, in December 2012 in Newtown, Connecticut, 26 people, including 20 children aged five to 10 years, were killed in a shooting. Do you remember? I hope so. The President of the United States Barack Obama said, with tears in his eyes, “We can’t tolerate this anymore. These tragedies must end. And to end them, we must change.” He even proposed reforms, which were rejected by those elected to Congress. Nothing has changed.

Ever since, every time there is a monthly mass killing, the president of the United States of America appears, looking sad, and says: “We really must do something,” or “Perhaps we should think about doing something,” or “It is enough!” or “Again, it is enough!”

Sometimes, he dares mention that we must think about trying to find a way of regulating access to firearms a little. And what do the Americans do? They buy guns. On the front page of Friday’s La Presse, the lead story was about our neighbors arming themselves at breakneck speed. Since Black Friday, two weapons have been bought every second. They make great Christmas presents.

Although the president of the United States of America is the most powerful being on the planet, he is powerless in his own country. There is no doubting his sincerity. Barack Obama really wants access to firearms to be more difficult. He is simply unable to make it more difficult.

While Obama was declaring that something must be done, the Republican speaker of the House of Representatives, Paul Ryan, declared that the worst thing would be to rush to do something. What an idiot! That’s not the worst. The worst is 14 killed on Wednesday, and three the week before, and eight next month and 12 the month after. That’s the worst. The worst is now.

But the Republicans are against all gun control, so they will fight it at all costs. The truth is, as Mao said, political power grows out of the barrel of a gun. The Republicans say the same thing. The Republicans are Maoists.

What are they relying on to reduce the number of mass shootings? Prayer. The problem is, it’s not God’s fault; it’s Gun’s fault. Last Thursday, The New York Daily News ran the headline “14 dead in California Mass Shooting, God Isn’t Fixing This.” So, Republican representatives, listen to common sense and do something. But they are keeping silent. The gun lobby paid for most of their electoral campaigns. I don’t know if Quebec Auditor General Renaud Lachance sees any link with their silence, but I do.

The arms dealers are more powerful than the president of the United States. This is not a news scoop. It is a fact. Before long, there will be a return to the American West. All Americans will carry a weapon, ready to defend themselves. When a terrorist, a madman or Lee Van Cleef tries to fire into the crowd, all the Clint Eastwoods will draw their weapons. Maybe it will save lives, or maybe it will create more victims. One thing is sure, if every citizen has a gun alongside their cell phone, there is a danger we will see macabre selfies. Ted with the body of the truck driver who overtook him. Sue with the body of the hairdresser who ruined her hair. Joe with the body of the referee who didn’t award his touchdown.

Obama must stop playing the mourner. The American political class must act. From shooting to shooting, his declarations sound more and more ironic. Even he seems to not believe what he is saying. Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard has more power than the American president to prevent his citizens from obtaining weapons as easily as water.

Last Saturday, Obama said this must not become normal. The week’s events showed him that it has become normal — too normal.

Do not act too quickly, said the Republican speaker of the House of Representatives. It will all be all right in the end. The arms industry has never done such good business. Those mortuaries aren’t doing too badly either. The undertaker will take everyone’s measurements, like he does in “Lucky Luke.”

When industry is thriving, everything thrives.

Gun bless America.

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