My brother is not a fan of gun control. File that under things I did not know about my brother. I now know because while visiting my family in Maine last weekend my brother and I got into a little disagreement. We got through it because we love each other and we’re normal, if opinionated, people and we used humor to diffuse our mutual frustration. But we made other people very uncomfortable before we got to that point.
I’m going to try copying Genial Misanthrope’s format (Mike!) in covering a different version of the same subject. I think everyone should copy Mike’s example as often as possible.
Act 1: I was making meatballs in my Stepmom’s kitchen. I had invited everyone over for my famous meatballs except, unbeknownst to me at that time, the meatballs were not going to taste as famously good as they did at home, according to my eleven-year-old’s secret text to his dad. He was right. I forgot the secret ingredient. What’s the secret ingredient? Wouldn’t you like to know. I’m talking about gun control here. Making conversation, I brought up the shame of the Florida school shootings in a country like ours, with so many resources to prevent this kind of violence.
Act 2: My brother said everyone tries to blame the NRA and not video games, or mental health laws, or the failure of the FBI. I wondered how Sean Hannity had infiltrated our family and taken over my brother’s brain. I tried to stay calm as my brain imploded. Surely this could’t be my relative? I said that there is no harm in exploring gun control, is there? That nobody really needs an assault rifle to go hunting, do they? So we could take a look at who can own an assault rifle, couldn’t we? And also why does the NRA try to buy so many politicians?
Act 3: Well, that last question didn’t go over well. My brother said there are already adequate gun control laws and if they were enforced, lives could be spared. My brother said that if the first Florida teacher had been armed, none of this would have happened.
Act 4: I pointed out that while I agreed multiple issues should be considered, like the effect of video games, mental health laws, security, and the failure of government agencies to follow through on the laws in place, my brother seemed to be in favor of examining only things that don’t include any kind of gun control. I asked why that was.
Act 5: My brother tensed, as if for battle, and talked about Switzerland, where, he said, citizens are required to own guns and the country has one of the lowest gun violence records ANYWHERE IN THE WORLD!!! While other countries with strict gun laws have MUCH MORE GUN VIOLENCE. I do not believe this and had the temerity to say so. My brother, in a sudden twist, began talking about the Georgia Guidestones and how a secret society is trying to wipe out most of the population and enslave most of the survivors. The first step is…guess what it is? Anybody? If you guessed gun control you are correct. According to my brother, the NRA, that altruistic entity, is the final gatekeeper between mass murder and enslavement by the Elites after they’ve abolished the second amendment.
Act 6: My mind opened. Ah, fear mongering. I could relate. I have a fear that the troglodytes in Washington and the evangelicals everywhere, want to transport my gender back 50 years and make them voiceless again. My brother would think my fear overly dramatic, as I do his. But maybe my brother is right. Maybe there is a secret order that wants to disarm the middle class and wipe out the neediest populations among us. However, I doubt they are the party fighting to maintain healthcare, a decent education, a path to citizenship, gender equality, food, and dignity for all. Why bother with all that humanitarianism as a prequel to annihilation and enslavement? It does sound like another significantly more right party, though, that wants to wipe out “Obamacare” and “Entitlement Programs” both of which keep people alive.
Act 7: I finished the meatballs. They were tainted with the absence of my secret ingredient and, perhaps, the less than amiable conversation. While the garlic bread toasted, and a half hour after the last barbed remark, I caught my brother’s eye and shook my finger in his direction. “Later”, I said, “I want to talk some more about gun control”. He laughed, I laughed, everyone else nervously laughed. The food was ready and we sat down to eat. There was room at the table for all of us.
Act 8: I returned home and looked up the gun laws in Switzerland. I considered sending the link to my brother. Decided against it. He’d probably looked it up already. This is why we all need to keep talking.