Feb 22 2018

Saying Vs Doing

After this last horrific massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas School in Parkland FL that took the lives of 17 students and teachers, the debate over gun control has taken on a new fervor. The students have taken the lead in calling BS on state and federal politicians and the NRA. They are impassioned, eloquent and armed with facts and logic. In Tallahassee, many GOP state legislators refused to face them.

Donald Trump had a “listening session” with survivors and family members of mass shooting at the White House. He came armed with a cheat sheet to remind himself to say “I hear you” and be empathetic. He mostly sat there stone faced, and unmoved by the pain in that room. Back in the 90’s Bill Clinton took heat for saying “I feel your pain.” But no one can ever say that he wasn’t empathetic. Trump’s obvious lack of empathy was quite palpable during that hour when all he proposed were NRA talking points, such as, arming teachers. Heaven forbid, he should propose reinstating the Clinton era ban on assault rifles that George W. Bush and the GOP allowed to expire.

It is total BS for Republicans try to blame Democrats for the lack of sensible gun control when they pull stunts like the Florida legislature did the other day, refusing to even debate banning AR-15’s but immediately passing a bill declaring pornography a “public health crisis.” Or Trump calling for better screening when he signed legislation that cut funding for background checks and made it easier for the mentally ill and fugitives from justice to get a gun.

Last night, MSNBC host Rachel Maddow contrasted words and deeds reminding us to watch what they do, not what they say.

“After a year or so of covering this new president and this new administration, I have found, in general, that it is always a safer bet to report on what they’re doing, rather than what they’re saying,” Maddow explained. “On this show, we sort of have a staff mantra about this, a silent movie. that’s the rule, treat them as a silent movie, just watch what they do, not what they say.”

“All good rules have their exceptions, but I think what we’re seeing right now in the wake of what happened in Parkland, Florida is an example of why that rule has some weight,” the host continued. “After the massacre in Parkland, you may have seen that this is part of what the president said should be done in response.” [..]

“Since President Trump took office, his administration has moved aggressively on multiple fronts to weaken the background check section for guns,” Maddow reported. [..]

“Those are their actions, which it is important to know when that same president is saying what he really wants to do is strengthen the background check system. That narrative from him and those actions don’t tell two conflicting stories, they tell one story, the story of what he’s doing while he wants to convince you otherwise,” Maddow concluded.

Actions speak louder than words and we need to be watchful.