This is my third Palmer Report piece about gun reform, or lack thereof, in America. I wrote about Biden’s gun safety agenda, and about how Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) could be a model for passing common-sense gun legislation. I have discussed the courageous activism by victims of U.S. domestic terrorism who are trying to reform the gun industry. Fred Guttenberg, father of 14-year-old Jaime killed in the horrific Parkland shooting, is working with Democrats to re-introduce the Ammunition Background Check Act of 2021 known as Jaime’s Law. Other teen victims fighting for change established March for Our Lives.
And yet, since the 1994 Federal Weapons Ban lapsed in 2004 under George W. Bush, not only have U.S. annual gun related deaths remained about the same, 10 per 100,000 people, the Kyle Rittenhouse case in Kenosha, Wisconsin could set a precedent further normalizing vigilante justice, hurling America further back to the lawlessness of our settlers in the Wild, Wild West.
Judge Schroeder overseeing the Rittenhouse trial is making a mockery of the case. He refused to allow the victims to be called victims. He called crucial line of questioning by the prosecution improper, possibly resulting in the defense successfully provoking a mistrial “with prejudice,” in which case Rittenhouse cannot be retried in the shootings. There were reports of Judge Schroeder holding his hand up in the white supremist symbol and forgetting to silence his phone so that the song used at Trump rallies played on his ring tone during the trial.
When it comes to gun reform, we are a nation of cowards. One can point to another country, also founded by lawless expatriates of the British monarchy, Australia. The very conservative Australian government matching our GOP’s failure to act on climate change or protect endangered species notwithstanding, when faced with just one horrific mass shooting, they immediately acted on gun reform. Their legislators showed immense courage knowing they would be voted out of office as a result. But they got bi-partisan gun safety laws passed and have had no mass shootings since. The GOP and their Rittenhouses, McMichaels, and Zimmermans are not heroes, they are cowards and terrorists.