Last month a young gunman's bullets tore into a second line parade, New Orleans' signature neighborhood celebration. 19 people, including two 10-year-old children, were hit in the barrage, shot down as they danced through the streets in honor of Mother's Day.
While the tale of the tape suggests that, in a democratic battle, the majority opinion will dominate against a passionate minority, the reality is far different.
We may be headed towards Round 2 of the gun control fight, in which case the NRA will begin kicking and screaming about how expanding the national criminal background check system will ultimately lead to the confiscation of guns. But is the argument really about "constitutional rights"? Or is the real argument about something else?
One wonders how the specious claims of the no-control gun advocates -- so filled with uncertainty and conjecture -- stands against the certainty of any human lives being saved. If this is a clash of simple values, then I choose life.
The NRA and its "corporate partners" in the gun industry have opposed and blocked even the smallest steps forward to regulate firearms. This kind of obstruction has consequences for real people: families left bereft, communities devastated.
As one of the roughly 60 million Americans living with a mental illness, I was happy to hear President Obama highlight the issue at last week's National Conference on Mental Health. But that's not what many of my colleagues in the media picked up on.
One of the NRA's first great victories was a prohibition to use federal funds for research into gun violence. We need to end this irrationality now. We should defend the work of scientists who spend their lives trying to save human beings, not offer spurious excuses to negate their efforts.
The threat to our society today lies in the criminal acquisition of firearms. One place we can look for guidance in legislation is any place that has had a strict gun policy.
Clearly "voter power" will not pry lawmakers out of the NRA's cold dead hands but "consumer power" can and will. Ninety percent of the nation wants universal background checks and the fight is moving into the marketplace.
Attempting to convince millions of Americans not to own guns will not educate them on safe gun practices, just like talking abstinence will not educate people on safe sex practices.
Conservative Republicans in our nation's capital have managed to accomplish something they only dreamed of when Tea Partiers streamed into Congress at the start of 2011: They've basically shut Congress down.
Is the black experience of life in America so meaningless to those who live in other places that it does not engender compassion and a response? Are our lives that invaluable? Are they really worth less that white ones?
The Illinois legislature has just passed a concealed-carry bill and the governor may have no choice but to sign it into law. The law has parts that are silly, parts that are stupid, and parts that are just bizarre. Did the folks in Springfield even read the bill before they voted?
Not only must our national gun laws be strengthened to require background checks for all gun sales and to stop the sale of high-capacity ammunition magazines and military-style assault weapons, among other things, but the guns themselves can and must be made safer by equipping them with personalization technology.
Under the flooring of my dressing room is a safe. In it are two guns that I used to shoot the bad guys in movies and a silver plated revolver with my name engraved on it which was given to me by some crazy fan. People take their movie heroes very seriously. I often played the good cowboy on screen, riding in to save the day. Now, everybody thinks he is a cowboy too. That frightens me. We have become a cowboy country with too many guns. I am 96-years-old. I have many grandchildren. I would hate to leave them a world where guns are easily accessible. Children don't vote, adults do. It's time to do something to make our children safer. America's cowboy days are over.
Why are seven U.S. Senators opening themselves up for such a big domestic backlash by siding with Iran, North Korea and Syria?