The Tyranny of the Minority


Who would have thought this democracy, which is a government of the majority and protective of minority views, is making that fact stand on its head when one group, in particular, holds the US by the throat and does not appear in any way ready to relinquish its murderous grip. And so it is on this Independence Day when America seems ready to put an end to the profligate manufacturing and ownership of guns.

There are now somewhere north of 350 million guns in this country. That’s more than there are cars (253 million) and television sets (147 million). Considering there are an estimated 330 million people living here and an estimated five million National Rifle Association members, I’m going to guess there might be a reason to consider that organization to be the most powerful minority tyranny has ever seen.

After Orlando, there seemed to be the proverbial ray of hope and sunshine regarding our love affair with shooting-to-kill. The House Democrats went so far as to conduct a sit-in on the floor with Representative John Lewis (D-GA) making the case against gun violence just as he made the case against racial injustice in the South back in the ’60s.

All the legislators wanted was a chance to attempt to erase some of the loopholes, which allow anyone in this country to purchase a firearm. The 188 House Democrats were totally rebuffed by the Republican Majority thus making them some of the least important people the America. The protest did give Congressman Steve King (R-IA), the chance to remark on Twitter that he was going to go out and buy another gun.

Now, what the country will probably be left with is a bill where the government has to prove that a person on a terror watch list or no-fly list should be incapable of buying a gun. That’s right, the people put on those lists do not have to make the case to the government. No, the government has to make the case and within 72-hours, no less. When was the last time the government was able to get out of its own way to accomplish something in three days?

It’s crystal clear the NRA’s tyrannical minority is to blame for this so-called publicity stunt. Its five million members are the reason for the country’s intransigence when it comes to any sane resolution regarding gun violence. When 85% of Americans want stricter gun controls and nothing ever changes, you tell me who’s in control.

We live in a country that sees more toddlers shooting and killing people than foreign Muslim terrorists have so far this year, yet no one ever talks about those tragedies. Of all the gun deaths in America thus far this year more than 21-thousand were by suicide while just over eight thousand were homicides, yet we never talk about those taking their own life, nor do we every spend much time talking about how some of our cutest pose a bigger risk than ISIS.

Just as the Israelis and Palestinians will never bury the hatchet unless it’s aimed at the other, this country will never put its guns aside regardless of the consequences. On this Fourth of July, it’s important to remember, however, the Founding Fathers, despite penning the Second Amendment, never intended to have a minority continue to find and support the easiest methods to kill and maim each other.

Eric Blumberg is a former radio news reporter and talk show host who now teaches communications and writing at Western Iowa Tech Community College in Sioux City. See

From The Progressive Populist, August 1, 2016

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