I attended a political town hall today in Los Angeles. One of the panel members, Congressman Ben Ray Luján from New Mexico passionately spoke about the El Paso and Dayton shootings emphasizing the importance of remembering each victim, not as a statistic, but as a unique story of life and loss. Then he paused and said, “Angie died today. She was 86 and fought to survive the wounds she suffered from being shot at the Walmart in El Paso, but she died this morning.”
Angie had a story because she had a life. She was in Walmart on line getting ready to pay for her groceries. Her son had just spoken with her and was planning to pick her up. All that life can offer awaited Angie and her family, but that ended today because an assault weapon was able to be easily obtained by a racist, White Supremacist. Angie’s family, like too many others, are left to suffer the excruciating pain of this kind of violent, shocking and senseless act.
Congressman Lujan’s urged everyone to keep learning the stories of these victims as a powerful reminder that we are all vulnerable to the tragedy caused by gun violence. Also made clear was Senator Mitch McConnell’s continued refusal to allow a vote on gun law reform bills recently passed by the House of Representatives. McConnell also referred to as NRA Mitch, has an A+ rating with the NRA and received over 1.3 million dollars in donations in the last election from the organization.
The frightening reality is that unless it becomes unlawful for candidates to receive millions of dollars in campaign contributions from special interests, what is best for America will come behind the interests of big donors. Winning and power have become a virus in Congress, infecting certain elected officials that are weak of mind and void of values. Mitch McConnell keeps confirming that he is the leader of dangerous legislative obstruction and that he does not care about the average American’s needs, struggles, and dreams.
Kentuckians, Mitch McConnell has been voted the most unpopular Senator in the country. His approval rating in Kentucky has been as low as 17% at times. Kentucky’s economy ranks #39th and #44th in the quality of healthcare. In addition, he is so hatefully partisan and blindly loyal to Trump, that he refuses to allow bills to be voted on that could improve and save the lives of millions of Americans.
Trump will probably promise gun reform to appease the victims, then take a call from the weakened NRA, and then back off from approving any new gun legislation. America has a president that is owned by special interests and is suspected to be owned by Russia.
Remember Congressman Lujan’s message, ” Angie died today, she was a person, with a life and a story just like you and didn’t deserve this horrible, preventable fate.” It could happen to us or our families next.