After a horrific school shooting in Texas left ten dead on Friday, Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick sensibly proposed door reform as a possible solution for preventing future massacres, conveniently leaving out America’s addiction to guns from the equation.
Patrick continued in this mode on ABC’s This Week Sunday morning, framing America’s moral sickness as the root of the school-shooting epidemic, and firearm-toting teachers as part of the solution.
An impassioned Patrick told George Stephanopoulos that “we cannot sit back and say ‘it’s the gun,’ ” exhorting Americans to “look inward at yourself at a nation” as they pray on Sunday.
Stephanopoulos countered that looking inward would reveal the fact that “guns are more available here, in greater numbers, in greater lethality than any other developed country in the world.”
Patrick agreed, but said said that guns are just part of the American fabric. “They are a part of who we are as a nation,” he said. “It is our Second Amendment — you know, it talks about a well-run militia … our teachers are part of that well-run militia.”
The notion that teachers should double as snipers is popular on the right, as it the idea that it’s America’s moral benightednessess, not easy access to firearms, that explains the country’s unique problem with gun violence.
New NRA president and populist hero Oliver North advanced this line of thinking in an even more extreme fashion on Fox News on Sunday. He blamed a “culture of violence” for Friday’s shooting, and even more nonsensically, invoked ADHD drugs as a possible factor. “These young boys have been on Ritalin since they were in kindergarten,” he said.
Occurring as it did in a heavily conservative area of Texas, Friday’s shooting has not sparked the same loud local calls for gun reform that were widespread in liberal Parkland, Florida, after the shootings at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in February. Governor Greg Abbott has gestured toward tweaking some gun laws, though, including speeding up background checks and banning people “who pose immediate danger” from buying weapons.