The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

Opinion When it comes to mass shootings, acceptance is not an option

(Luke Sharrett/Bloomberg News)
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Regarding Michael Gerson’s June 7 op-ed, “The GOP spin on gun rights is morally and legally wrong”:

Mr. Gerson’s citing of the finding in a recent CBS-YouGov poll that 44 percent of Republicans agree that mass shootings are “unfortunately something we have to accept” in a free country highlights the logical, yet immorally grim, conclusion that many Republicans, including a large portion of their congressional representatives, have reached. For them, not wanting to offend the gun lobby and its most committed followers appears to have a higher priority than reducing the occurrence and magnitude of tragedies such as those in Buffalo and Uvalde, Tex.

As a matter of honesty, then, they should at least have the logical consistency to introduce legislation establishing a “National Martyrs for the Second Amendment Day.” It would recognize and honor the innocent victims who have been forced to give their lives on the altar of defending the higher priority of many congressional Republicans to be perceived as pure in their support of the right to bear arms.

Of course, these gun zealots would react with “righteous” indignation to this effort to have them live with the consequences of their words and actions. But, quite frankly, they would say and do anything to hide the immoral subtext of their staunch defense of the Second Amendment: For them, the dead bodies in a supermarket aisle or on the floor of a fourth-grade classroom are “acceptable breakage.”

Chuck Cutolo, Westbury, N.Y.

My husband and I are planning on visiting the United States soon to see our son and his family, and we have both been vaccinated four times. Until this weekend, we would have had to take a covid-19 test before traveling. It would seem we are considered to be more of a risk to the health of your country than an 18-year-old who can legally buy any number of assault rifles for no good reason other than to wreak havoc.

Cynthia Bengen, London