A serious question

What form of political organizing, if any, stands the best chance of proving effective against the phenomenon of mass shootings?

7 Responses to “A serious question”

  1. gerrycanavan Says:

    I’m pretty hopeless on the subject, but it seems as though a very multi-pronged approach will be required that involves among other things:

    * somehow preventing media from turning every story into an obscene feeding frenzy that inspires the next one
    * whatever tweaks are possible to the legal/insurance regime (which might not be much) that can massively up the liability of everyone involved in gun manufacture and purchase
    * Universal Basic Income, and other full-communism-style social shifts designed to eliminate widespread feelings of hopelessness and “loserdom”
    * very generous, very aggressive weapons buyback once you’ve gotten any sort of restriction or onerous registration/insurance regime in place.
    * I’m sorry to say that I think the “joke” idea of deliberately and publicly registering visible minority populations for open carry *would* actually probably shift the window in our direction.

    In other words we should probably invest in personal force fields.

  2. Daniel Says:

    Avatar filters of some sort.

  3. Jael Says:

    mass enrolment in the NRA.
    Wrest control of the organisation away from the current hands.

  4. Dan Says:

    By “form of political organizing” are you referring to tactics (like those mentioned above) or to ways in which we go about structuring our corporate life together? In other words, are you asking what might actually be done given our context or are you asking people to imagine a different context where mass shootings are not as present as they are in ours?

  5. Adam Kotsko Says:

    The former. I assume we can all do the latter easily.

  6. Joe Calandrino Says:

    The pre-politicized phrase “mass shootings” already compromises if not mocks any ‘form’ political organization might take. From Oklahoma City through the Boston marathon (not to mention the frequency of bombings in Palestine) mass murders, the deadliest form of violence is the explosive device, and such devices deployed in the U.S. and elsewhere dwarf the mechanism of ‘shootings’ in terms of the number of deaths and maiming. Were ‘ mass shootings’ to stop at this very moment, the number of victims would remain a constant. Anyone eager to fly out of Egypt these days?

    The ‘form’ of organization should takes its shape in response to ‘violence.’ Violence can be thought of as an abuse of means and ends; what one can say of forms of violence can be said of forms of abuse, both lethal and non-lethal. The agenda that generates a phrase like “mass shootings” already has no interest in addressing violence, or its cultural ground. Any ‘effective’ organizational form of a political solution to what sometimes takes the form of a ‘mass shooting’ will therefore look not merely to the surface structure of such a pathological act, but its etiological antecedents within the cultural matrix that creates it. Such an effective political organization will have the means and the will to articulate the relationship between, for example, structural and economic violence and abuse.

    The form of organization sought in this ‘serious question’ centers on understanding violence. People of ‘good will’ organize against the vacuum in which, dare I say it, ‘evil’ fills in the absence of acts of good. Effective political organizations dedicated to stopping mass murders focus on the “why” first, and then on the ‘”how”. Issues of personhood, dignity, and even invisible forms of violence and abuse are at the heart the problem, which must first be characterized before good actions can be identified and implemented. So perhaps ‘the first thing we do,’ is not ‘kill all the lawyers.’ Anyone thinking otherwise finds refuge in Cade’s company of the deluded.

  7. Hamletsmessiah Says:

    I think the best kind of gun-control organisation to join would be one that exists at all. Seriously, there is no major gun control organisation in the USA. The fact that the largest one, the Brady campagin, is named after Regan’s Press Secretary says something and they almost literally 1% of the NRA’s size.

    You could come up with one. Use your imagination. The Campaign for Gandhi-RFK-JFK-MLK-Lincoln-Lennon-…Do you really need a new kind if the old one just hasn’t been tried?


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