The “Gays Against Guns” (GAG) campaign received a jumpstart at Sunday’s NYC Pride Parade and elsewhere in the country. On command, these marchers stopped chanting, and laid down on the pavement in a “die-in,” a dramatic exclamation driving home the point.
The GAG campaign emerged following the Orlando massacre at a gay night club two weeks ago, and mirrors the sit-in for gun control by heroic democrats literally sitting down on the floor of the US House of Representatives, and many coordinated civil actions across the country for today’s National Day of Action Against Gun Violence.
Fifty years ago as a young gender-nonconforming teen and college student involved in civil disobedience to stop the Vietnam War, I could have never dreamed that the LGBT movement would fight for marriage equality or their right to serve in the military, two things antithetical to us hippies.
Now, the events in Orlando have ignited queer people to again step into the mainstream, this time to bring about common sense gun legislation that has near-unanimous support of practically every adult living in the US. And why not? The LGBT movement has already demonstrated that it can get stuff done at head-spinning speed.
The Supreme Court this week underscored that domestic abusers, whether convicted of a felony or a misdemeanor, should not be able to buy guns. We need to enact no-brainers such as preventing those on the terrorist no-fly list from purchasing guns, and closing all the background check loopholes. The NRA-GOP objects to these on the grounds that civil liberty would be hurt because getting off the terrorist list or passing a thorough background check just takes too much time. But the solution is to fix the judicial processes to eliminate these problems rather than let this insanity continue.
Personally, I believe an important corollary to these new laws should be a massive buy-back of the hundreds of million firearms already out there, as Australia and other countries have done in a effort to reduce gun violence.
Guns make anger lethal. Find out what you can do, today and moving forward, either through GAG or other gun legislation advocacy groups.
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