5 Lamest Excuses For The Newtown Mass Shooting

Guns are the problem. Period. But in the right-wing media bubble, the reasons behind the mass shooting of 20 children and six adults in Newtown, Connecticut have nothing to do with guns and everything to do with, well, everything else. By avoiding the root of the problem — America’s lax gun laws — conservatives have taken the NRA slogan “guns don’t kill people, people kill people” excuse to an entirely new level (never mind that in China, on the same day of the Sandy Hook massacre, a deranged knife-wielding man injured — not killed, injured — 22 schoolchildren).

Now, there are some moderate, sane people who wrongly believe gun control is not the issue. There are some who believe this is strictly a mental health issue. Many of them cite this story, titled “I Am Adam Lanza’s Mother,” by a Boise mom dealing with a son who has a mental illness. It is important to not only talk about, but take action on, America’s broken mental health care system, and catch angry depressives with a grudge — who are usually young, suburban, white males — before they act out (for more on that, watch “Columbine” author David Cullen discuss the three main types of people who commit mass murder). But to say this is a mental health issue and not a gun control issue is just wrong.

Here are the five wackiest mass-shooting excuses from the right-wing noise machine:

Photo credit: GunControlDebate via Flickr

Gun-Free Zones

It is gospel in the right-wing echo chamber that the Newtown mass shooting could have been prevented if only the principal or a teacher had been locked and loaded. Gun-free zones, they claim, are to blame. Radical gun-rights advocate Larry Pratt, executive director of Gun Owners of America, was actually given a voice by USA Today, where he stated that “in addition to the gunman, blood is on the hands of members of Congress and the Connecticut legislators who voted to ban guns from all schools in Connecticut (and most other states). They are the ones who made it illegal to defend oneself with a gun in a school when that is the only effective way of resisting a gunman.”

Photo credit: DaniDur via Flickr

Taking God Out Of Schools

According to right-wing Fox News host and former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee, if only God was allowed in America’s public schools, this mass shooting would have never taken place. Forget gun control, said Huckabee on Fox News, “we ask why there is violence in our schools, but we’ve systematically removed God from our schools. Should we be so surprised that schools would become a place of carnage because we’ve made it a place where we don’t want to talk about eternity, life, what responsibility means, accountability.”

Photo credit: David Ball via Wikimedia Commons

Blame Hollywood

One of the most convenient ways to avoid talking about easy access to real guns as the problem is to blame the fake guns in movies, on TV and in the latest videogame title. Conservatives love to blame Hollywood for the moral disintegration they see happening across the country. So it’s no surprise then that the website Tea Party Nation published a rant against popular culture, writing that “popular culture has made murder, rape, mayhem, hatred, and violence ‘cool’. Rebellion has become the noblest of acts. All this with the blessings of people like William Ayers, who has been very influential in modern education. We are creating monsters in our schools.”

Photo credit: Jal08d via Flickr

The News Media Caused This

Controversial conservative Wall Street Journal columnist James Taranto got into trouble after the Aurora massacre when he tweeted, “I hope the girls whose boyfriends died to save them were worthy of the sacrifice.” Now Taranto is stirring up controversy again by actually blaming the news media for mass shootings. He wrote in a recent column that journalists who “help publicize these horrific acts are in a small way implicated in enabling them. Perhaps those who scapegoat gun-rights supporters do so because they have too much pride to contemplate their own fallen nature.”

Photo credit: KSheinin via Flickr

Schools Teach Evolution And ‘How To Be A Homo’

Tennessee pastor Sam Morris told his congregation on Sunday that mass shootings are occurring because public schools are government “mind-control centers” that teach “junk about evolution” and “how to be a homo.”

“Why do you still send your kids to the governmental schools?” the pastor asked the congregation. “What’s behind this shooting that we saw on Dec. 14 in Newtown, Connecticut and the other ones like it? What’s going on? Well, number one, deception… I got news for you, when you kicked God out of schools, you’re going to be judged for that.”

Photo credit: COEComm via Flickr


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Danziger Draws

Jeff Danziger lives in New York City and Vermont. He is a long time cartoonist for The Rutland Herald and is represented by Counterpoint Syndicate. He is a recipient of the Herblock Prize and the Thomas Nast (Landau) Prize. He served in the US Army in Vietnam and was awarded the Bronze Star and the Air Medal. He has published eleven books of cartoons, a novel and a memoir. Visit him at DanzigerCartoons.

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