Wednesday, March 6, 2013

It's Time to Start Hollering

Prepare for a screed.  Prepare to be harangued.  Prepare to be brow-beaten.  I've come to the conclusion that the only way to get on the national radar is to holler.

I'm not using the word in a pejorative sense.  I'm not condoning screeching or other loud noises.  Hollering, when I was growing up, meant speaking with more than the usual amount of intensity.  The voice did not need to be raised; it was the emotion powering the words which turned normal, Long Island forcefulness into hollering.

It's time for us to start hollering about sensible gun legislation.

I'm not getting into a 2nd Amendment argument.  I've managed to stop the conversation by reminding my interlocutor that the first few words of that Amendment include well-regulated, which to me, condones some measure of control. I'm not a constitutional scholar; I can't parse the verbiage beyond read the words, for crying out loud.  That piece of the argument is fruitless, and is why we have a Supreme Court.

I'm talking about common sense.  I'm talking about making government work on the business at hand.  I recognize that there are many opinions on the topic; I'm asking our government to shine a light on the issue.  I'm finished with hearings.  I'm finished trying to change minds.  I want to know where my representatives stand.  I want them to vote on measures which could have prevented, could have minimized the damage, could have deterred the mass shootings in Tucson, in Aurora, in Newtown.

I want to know who is on which side.  I want you to tell me who you are.

Michael Bloomberg wants to die a pauper.  He's putting his considerable wealth behind Mayors Against Illegal Guns. He's been successful, as the Christian Science Monitor reports:
Score one for New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg and his national gun-control campaign. The candidate whom his political-action committee backed for a congressional seat in Illinois – to the tune of $2 million – won the Democratic primary Tuesday...
Suddenly, the money is being matched.  The Chicago candidate put her pro-gun-control position front and center in her campaign, and she won. She attacked an opponent's A+ rating from the NRA, and promoted her own desire to ban assault weapons and she won.  As the winner, Robin Kelly, said in her post-election speech:
You sent a message that was heard around our state and across the nation. A message that tells the NRA that their days of holding our country hostage are coming to an end. And their days of scaring Congress to submission on gun control is coming to a close
There are lots of us out there.  We've just been flying below the radar.  Now is the time to start to holler.

A beloved relative's posts have been blocked from my Facebook news feed because I was tired of deleting four or five or ten or twelve Glenn Beck re-postings. All day, every day, he was trolling for that which supported his cause.... and he was sharing it widely. Rarely, he included a joke.  For the most part, he was preaching to the choir/converting the uninitiated/annoying the hell out of me.

But, he also got me thinking. Perhaps he was on to something, my wrong-headed relative. He was promoting his agenda, shoving it in my face, forcing me to think about it. It occurs to me that, perhaps, I ought to do the same.

Those on the other side are on talk radio, are writing letters to the editor, are calling and emailing their legislators on the local, state and national level.  They aren't one-and-done, either.  They are on the phones and the interwebs every day.  They have been hollering for a long time.

We, on the other hand, polite and right-thinking as we are, make our one stab at contacting our Congressman and then, patting ourselves on the back, move on to the next good deed on our list.  It never crosses our minds that we need to use our voices, that we need to make a statement, that we are not being heard. I'm here to tell you that we are not heard, we are not valued, we are not considered.  There is no reason for us to be part of the equation - no one knows we are out here.

I'm going to use my Ashleigh Burroughs Facebook page to repost, to share, to holler about sensible gun legislation.  If you're not my friend already, send me a request and it will be granted. The messages will be tweeted  @ABattheBurrow, too. I'll be encouraging you to share and repost as well. Our time is now. If a stricken Congresswoman, an assassinated Federal judge, twenty dead kindergarteners, movie patrons mowed down on opening night... if all of that doesn't move you, please let me know what will.

I'm willing to engage in the conversation.

I hope you are willing to carry it on, to push it forward, to holler along with me.  Thinking right thoughts is wonderful, but not as wonderful as acting on them.

10 comments:

  1. Maybe start with NASCAR and their moronic "NRA 500"....

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Write to them. Write to the sponsors. Write to the drivers. Don't go. Don't let your family and friends attend. I know you can holler........ and it's time to stop preaching to the choir and take the leap into public engagement. Scary, I know, but now is our time.
      a/b

      Delete
  2. Woo hoo! Don't forget Moms Demand Action--I'm part of that group and we are working very closely with Mayor Against Illegal Guns and Americans for Responsible Solutions.

    Moms Demand Action can be found at: momsdemandaction.org. Over 100 of us are going to be on Capitol Hill on the 13th meeting with our Congress people to discuss common sense gun control. If anyone wants to join us, you can RSVP at: https://momsdemandaction.org/moms-take-the-hill-for-gun-sense/

    Also, join us on Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/MomsDemandAction

    I'm following you on Twitter too.

    I'm up for hollering!


    Megan xxx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for those links, Megan. YOU have been on this since the beginning. YOU have been acting and posting and reposting. YOU inspired me.... a busy mom, a working mom, a volunteering mom, yet you find time and space to act.

      Thanks for hollering on our behalf. It's time for you to have some company in the conversation.
      a/b

      Delete
  3. Good idea. I have mostly leftie friends, who are further into gun control than I am, but there are a couple who pass on rightie verbiage and I never appreciate it. Glenn Beck would be a step too far to tolerate. It is possible to hide those posts and keep them from being seen by others and sometimes I do that. Sometimes I think it just shows how ridiculous this is. The NRA has been in it for money and if they suffer financially for it, good. My husband was a member some 20 years ago when they began heavily promoting assault rifles. He dumped them back then and told them why. So much money was on the other side that they didn't care. But it's money that will talk. What the NRA says now should have all responsible gun owners dumping them. It's disgusting. Yes, it's a well-regulated militia. When did the word regulation get lost in this hyperbole that they are throwing out! We need to put it back in every chance we get.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, Rain, we do need to engage in the conversation. As you pointed out, the other side is there and annoying as all get out. I think it's time for us to adopt their tactics and use our voices and our keyboards and the USPostal Service to promote our message with as much enthusiasm as they use. We're not talking confiscation... we're talking regulation.
      a/b

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  4. I am so with you! I am trying to holler but not enough. I am going to up the effort. I recall arguing with my brother at the Sunday dinner table as a teenager that the NRA was a vile organization not there to help him or any citizen. They are there to take money from gun manufacturers. (He still doesn't believe it.)

    As for the 2nd Amendment, I'm not convinced it grants individual gun ownership as a constitutional right (that's a militia??), but you are correct that what ever it means it must be well-regulated.

    Way to go Ashleigh!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, they are an industry lobby masquerading as defenders of the Constitution. Yes, individuals with guns don't make a militia in my mind, either. I've given up trying to convince anyone but those voting on the issues - they are just as hard headed as my neighbors :)
      a/b

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  5. I'll start hollering as best I can. I'm a voice in the wilderness among my colleagues. What I've found is that they don't stop until you agree with them. We are willing to listen and compromise and they aren't at all. Can't reason with them. So I just say my piece and then keep quiet. Half my office carries and can't figure out why that makes me feel less safe.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'd be scared with all those armed colleagues, too, Opus :(
      Aim your rants at those in power; they won't listen any more than your colleagues, but with enough of us in their faces perhaps they will bow to the pressure. If we don't try, we'll never know.
      a/b

      Delete

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