It has been said that you know that a politician is telling an untruth when you see their lips moving. Yes, I know that most people use the word 'lie' in that statement, but don't you know that calling someone a liar is not politically correct? Well, I tend to examine a person's actions more so than I concern myself with what they say. In a sense, I guess you could say that ignoring speech and examining action demonstrates an acceptance or belief in this well used statement.
This statement is never more evident than when you see action that directly contradicts a statement. A politician will state a problem and make all sorts of promises to solve that problem. However, when the rubber meets the road, the actions sometimes fail to align well with solving the stated problem. This is when you have a case of agenda pushing, not problem solving.
Take the latest political football for example - gun control. The problem as stated by the "leaders" within our government is that we have too much gun violence in this country. I know that I said I don't concern myself with what is said, but if you look closely at the problem statement you will see the initial indications of agenda pushing rather than problem solving. It seems to me that we have too much violence in our country; not just gun violence, not just gang violence, not just domestic violence - violence in general. A leader truly concerned with the problem and desiring to solve the problem would not restrict the problem statement to just gun violence. Are they not concerned for the poor guy that is brutally beaten to death by a gang? Are they not concerned for the poor lady that is overpowered and stabbed to death by her estranged and deranged spouse? Well they aren't concerned with those victims of violence if they are pushing an agenda for which those victims offer no political capital.
But now you get to the actions, the pushing of legislation that will limit (one could accurately argue infringe upon) the right of citizens to bear arms. First of all, this action certainly doesn't solve the real problem; too much violence in our country. But additionally it doesn't even solve the problem as it is stated; too much gun violence in our country. Not only does simple common sense render gun control an illegitimate solution, a simple Internet search will uncover a multitude of violence cases that would not have been prevented by gun control and countless studies pointing to high violence rates in areas of the world under the strictest of gun control.
The solution to violence in America must address the two main culprits...
Mental illness continues to dominate the narrative in violence cases. Be it a mass shooting in a school, a domestic murder suicide, or a case of workplace violence, mental illnesses such as depression, schizophrenia, paranoia, and others are very often present. The solution to violence in America must address these medical conditions. Be it that these are medical conditions, reform of health care should certainly address these mental illnesses. Now I'm no expert on the details hidden in the latest health care legislation, however I do attempt to be well informed on such important legislation. One would think if health care legislation addressed such a major problem for our society that we would hear all about it. We hear verbose discussion on free contraception and mammograms, but I don't recall hearing any pundit on either side of the debate trumpeting how this wonderful piece of legislation will reduce the violence in our country by providing for the medical needs of those with mental illness.
A little research into the violence in America that doesn't always make the national news will likely reveal the culture of violence that is prevalent in areas across this country. When referring to the culture of violence in our country, many will jump to the conclusion that the poorer, inner city communities are being stereotyped again. I'm not concerned with socioeconomic categorizations because I believe the culture of violence is rooted in something far more fundamental than money. The rise in the culture of violence in this country can be charted in direct comparison to the decline of foundational family in this country. Like it or not, the ingredients of the foundational family are a married husband and wife raising children together. As children grow up in home environments other than this foundational family unit, they will naturally seek out the needed nurturing outside the home. For instance, a boy that grows up in a home without a father will seek out other men to be examples to mimic. Far too often this outside influence is of the negative persuasion. The gang culture is totally dependent on young men and women that are deprived of positive influence and nurturing at home. Any solution to the problem of violence in our country must promote the foundational family unit for the purpose of combating the culture of violence running rogue in our society.
That said, it seems clear that politicians today are more concerned with pushing their agenda rather than solving a problem. Having come to that conclusion, one must worry with what agenda is being pushed and why is it being pushed. In this case, the agenda is gun control; in other words, limiting the right of citizens to own and bear arms. Now we understand the agenda, we must ask why is this agenda being pushed so aggressively. That seems like a topic for another blog post, but it's safe to say we should start with an examination of the history of citizenry that was limited or stripped of their arms. It's just a thought, but I wonder how the citizens of Europe in the first half of the twentieth century would have felt about the right to bear arms. Sorry, I couldn't help myself; I just had to get that little shot in there, I'll save the rest for later.