Before my husband left for his last out of town business trip, he was packing and pulled a business card out of the pocket of a suit I hadn’t seen him wear in ages. The business card belonged to Gabe Zimmerman. The biotech development strategy related to my husband’s work that they had initially discussed now resides only in my husband’s head. Gabe is gone because of a lack of gun safety laws, lack of access to mental health care, lack of funding for integrated follow-up on higher education police reports. The survivors of the mass shooting during the January 8th assassination attempt on Gabrielle Giffords life may well, in time, champion issues related to the Conservative-NRA collusion, the Republican led dismantling of mental health care, and the current de-funding of everything except private corporate dictated government. But right now most of them are probably still healing physically and may or may not have started the life-long process of mental, emotional, and spiritual healing. They are busy.
So it is up to us to demand protection for the vulnerable in our society and reasonable controls to keep us safe. That is what infrastructure is about. Laws, roads, regulation, these are the bones of our society. Our country, our society will not stand without them.
If you need a reminder of what the problem is check out this Arizona Republic article, Guns in Arizona: Victims decry public’s acceptance of violence, that reports on victim response to a mass Arizona public shooting that happened the month before the Tucson shootings — the comments are the truly scary problematic part. People are walking around in fear, arming themselves, celebrating ignorance, and reinforcing their barbaric attitudes in an echo chamber to which the civilized world, of which I no longer include the United States as a member, gape shake their heads.