As the Newton victim’s families are in Washington D.C. this week talking to Senators from both parties on their hope for gun safety and regulation legislation, I can only recall the time I once spoke to Senator Kennedy in his office concerning America’s involvement in the Vietnam conflict, or the “American War” as the Vietnamese have forever referred to it. Even though the Senator basically supported my position, I can’t tell you how intimidating it was to be the Senate Office Building talking to an actual Senator. I noticed a distinct pull back in my rhetoric. On reflection, I feel this was due to the respect for the man, his title and the overwhelming building. I’m guessing the Newton families were likewise in awe when speaking to Senators and tamped down there true feelings out of politeness and courtesy.
So, I’m suggesting a few plans to stir the pot:
One, like the Vietnamese, you get to define a devastation that happens in your own back yard. Reference to the Newtown carnage could be something like: “The Congressional and NRA Induced Massacre in Newtown.”
Second, the only thing we know for sure is that up till now simple appeals for rationality for gun safety haven’t worked. It’s time for bold dramatic action. Something to wake up America from the NRA induced somnolence. The Newton families need a venue to express how they truly feel and why they hope their children and their teachers did not die in vain. Somewhere close but outside of the overwhelming Senate Office Building. I propose this week, if the families are agreeable, they kneel on the steps leading up to the Senate holding pictures of their lost children and teachers, and speak from the voice in their hearts. And beg and plead for Senators to vote on proposed gun regulations and vote to pass them.
They should speak about how government doesn’t work if it doesn’t listen to the people. They should express how Congress’s cowardly failure to re-instate the Assault Weapons Ban for fear of retaliation from the NRA was directly responsible for the Newtown massacre and this non-action leaves only a one degree of separation between Congress and the butchery. Congress is as responsible for this slaughter as if they pulled the trigger themselves. The families should feel free to shame the Senate this week. The media would surely take note and talk of gun regulation might again come alive.
Understand this must not be rehearsed. This should be a political statement from the heart. The families should feel free to express for the entire world to hear, their very deepest emotions, by their own definition, in their own words. Not words politely stunted when in the presence of a Senator, on his turf, in his grand office.
It would also get media attention if the families threw pictures of their lost loved ones from the gallery onto the Senate floor. So they get thrown out. All the better.