In a telling sign of Blue State frustration

The New York Times is taking its gun control push a whole lot further with a page one editorial in tomorrow’s edition of the paper.

This is a mostly unprecedented move. The Times hasn’t run a front-page editorial since 1920, and according to the paper, the last time they did this, it was to criticize the nomination of Warren G. Harding for the presidency by the Republican party (he won that year).

Times publisher Arthur Sulzberger Jr. explained in a statement they want “to deliver a strong and visible statement of frustration and anguish about our country’s inability to come to terms with the scourge of guns.”

There’s not much doubt that the Times was right about Warren Harding. It’s a little surprising that they haven’t found anything else important enough to editorialize about on the front-page in 95 years. And what they have to say about guns is mainly impotent bitching. They don’t call for a huge gun buyback or widespread gun confiscation, and one or both of those things would be required to do anything meaningful in the near-term about gun violence in this country.

The problem really isn’t that people can legally buy guns (regardless of type) in stores or special shows. Not anymore. The county has enough guns already to arm anyone anytime and anywhere with anything they might want to use to kill one or ten or a hundred and fifty people.

And, as we all know, there isn’t a damn thing we can do about it because the conservatives take every new gun tragedy as evidence that we need more guns.

It’s true that the public overwhelmingly supports some modest gun control measures, like more rigorous background checks. But the gun lobby is powerful enough that even these types of reforms cannot pass through Congress or many state legislatures. And there’s not much evidence to support the idea that background checks would put a significant dent in gun violence. It’s worth doing, obviously. But mainly its worth doing because something modestly helpful is better than nothing at all.

Yet, even that logic is subject to challenge. If you somehow get the political momentum to do something and what you do is wholly inadequate, perhaps you’ve squandered your best chance to make a real difference.

So, we’re back to frustration.

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