Obama's attempt to save the United States from gun violence began with crocodile tears on Tuesday, and continued with a CNN town hall Thursday night. He may not cry as much as Boehner did, but he certainly tries his hand at theatrics. It's no surprise CNN would join the "we hate gun violence" bandwagon. A #StopGunViolence hashtag floated around the bowels of the internet this week, praising his efforts. I'm always annoyed at those who use such a phrase, as if they are the only ones against murder. But in the age of emotion and hashtag diplomacy, it's no surprise
I didn't want you to be forced to spend your Thursday night watching Obama go on about the evil of guns, so I watched the town hall on your behalf. I present four takeaways from Obama's town hall "Guns in America".
1. It's all about Obama. From crying in front of the camera to delivering executive actions closing loopholes which aren't even loopholes (as Caleb Howe pointed out here), the attention is on him and not the issue. He's desperate for a legacy, and looking to earn some quick points by appealing to people's emotions. So many have said his new measures will "keep children in America safe". How? Criminals who successfully bypass normal routes and obtain guns without background checks will not be affected. The criminals aren't targeted, the law-abiding gun owners are. Obama didn't save children this week, but both he and his supporters believe he did. Before the program began, the drooling commentators said he wanted this to part of his legacy. During the town hall he let everyone know that crime has gone down during his presidency. All hail King Obama. You can smell his cheap version of sincerity from a mile away.
2. He was out of his element, and his explanations made absolutely no sense. The president's attempt to explain his ideas fail miserably, especially in a town hall setting where he has to use his own words. He actually said that background checks would help...while commenting that gang members buy guns illegally (uh, ok), and mentioning that of the 30,000 people lost to gun violence each year, 2/3 of those are suicides. Background checks won't stop a gang member, and if you want to blow your brains out, that's sad, but at least you've had a background check? Come on. He also brought up the horrific Newtown shooting, but then said the shooter used guns that weren't his, didn't have a record, but would like to make those situations less lethal in the future. Again I say...what and how?? Circling around the issue and throwing a dose of emotion on it doesn't change a thing, Mr. President.
3. The audience members were the evening's winners. Taya Kyle, wife of Chris Kyle, was the first to ask a question, and point-blank told Obama that laws don't keep things from happening. She should know. Her husband was murdered with a gun. Others, such as a rape victim (who was assaulted for three hours) would like to be armed to protect herself and family, and a police officer, clearly made Obama shift in his seat. When the people of America, the law-abiding citizens who are the majority of our population, come toe-to-toe with the president, the result is powerful. When Kris Jacob, V.P. of the American Firearms Association, questioned Obama by asking that current laws be enforced and police officers be supported, the president looked irritated. The reality is that from behind his podium and in his search for soundbites, Obama misses the real stories, the common sense need for guns, and the millions of responsible souls wanting to protect themselves and others.
4. It will always be the Republican, the NRA, and the gun's fault. He called-out the NRA for not even attending the town hall, and said the NRA's rhetoric is over-the-top. He is supposedly happy to talk to them, but wants the dialogue to be based on "facts and truth". Maybe it's just me, but I prefer to blame the perpetrator(s) for crimes rather than the gun, or knife, or car used to commit an act. He also mentioned that the issue had become too politicized, all the while politicizing it at every turn. He proudly proclaimed that the NRA doesn't have a stranglehold on Congress and in the next breath, said members of Congress vote a certain way so they can get reelected.