We've seen and heard enough over the past week.
Now, the time has come to get real and deal with the problem that faces us.
Yes, there's been enough finger-pointing and there's more than enough blame to go around.
And everybody's culpable here. The Democrats certainly aren't without blame as they had the White House and both houses of Congress and they actually did little to stem the tide of gun crime. Indeed, the assault weapons ban expired in 2004 but once Barack Obama and the Dems gained complete control in 2008, they didn't reinstitute the ban. For the record: the ban was originally signed into law by Bill Clinton but even President Reagan supported it. So, yes -- this is a problem for both parties.
And the FBI is to blame. They obviously fell down on the job.
And the security guards at the high school who chickened out are to blame as well.
And the Broward County sheriff is to blame.
And the social agency people who visited the alleged killer and failed to act on concerns about him are to blame.
And yes, the NRA is to blame just for being so damned intractable.
And the dominant media are to blame for endlessly stirring the pot, sensationalizing the crimes and their culprits and contributing way to much heat and way too little light.
Blame, blame, blame, blame and blame.
That can go on forever. Truth is, government and big special interests failed us -- and failed us all the way around.
OK. Now that we've said that and have gotten that out of our system, what now?
What should we actually do?
No single action will be a panacea.
There's no easy answer here. But steps must be taken.
To any reasonably sane person the following steps would appear to be obvious priorities:
1) The assault weapons should probably be re-eneacted. There's no guarantee it will stem the tide of violence but there's no reason not to put it back into effect, either.
2) Background checks must be toughened.
3) Much tighter controls need to be put on gun ownership by persons with mental disorders. In the case of unstable or questionable persons who already possess guns, the idea of a gun ownership restraining order seems to have merit.
4) Bump stocks must be banned.
5) Hollywood and the popular culture and the media must be held accountable. The glorification of violence must be halted. This ain't no movie and it ain't no video game. This is serious now, understand?
6) The crisis of boys with absent fathers must be addressed. It's nothing less than a time bomb.
7) Social media must come to the table. They share some of the responsibility for this.
8) The FBI must be investigated and the parties responsible for the abrogation of responsibility there must be dismissed.
9) A full investigation of all involved at the state, county and local level in Florida must also begin and those responsible for the foul ups there must also be dismissed.
10) Respect must be restored for the sanctity of human life and that means that we must have the courage to address the abomination that is abortion on demand. Remember: respect for human life is not a selective matter.
Our nation is facing a very, very, serious situation.
All sides must accept responsibility and all sides must be willing to cede something for the greater good. There can be no progress until and unless that happens.