“For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong. Sadly, there are some issues, like homelessness and these shootings, where we simply don’t have all the answers.” – Texas Senator, John Cornyn, 8/4/19
I am shocked and appalled at the senseless tragedy in [
AMERICAN CITY TK] El Paso.
It was senseless — which is to say, there is no obvious explanation which would force me to reexamine my political beliefs. And it was a tragedy — which means you should be sad, not angry, and certainly not compelled to take any form of meaningful action.
As a conservative lawmaker who prides himself on anti-immigration rhetoric, opposing gun control, and dismissing accusations of racism at every turn, I have absolutely no idea what could have motivated this self-proclaimed white nationalist gunman who specifically targeted people of color in a border city.
It is one of life’s great mysteries, like why mean people online keep calling me a racist; why I consistently receive less than 5% of the Black vote in every election; and why my daughter has refused to look me in the eyes at dinner since mid-2016. Everyone else is behaving as if I am some repugnant monster with no moral compass who has dedicated his life to an ideology that benefits himself to the severe detriment of marginalized communities. Boy, does everyone else have some self-examination to do.
Let’s not get ahead of ourselves. The last thing we want to happen after this random, inexplicable, enigma of a whoopsy is for our rights to come under attack. And the fact is, some conniving liberals are going to seize the opportunity to politicize this unthinkable disaster and attempt to restrict our 2nd Amendment rights. It’s disgusting.
(By the way, me calling them disgusting? That doesn’t count as politics. That’s my authentic nonpartisan reaction, which my staff has made sure to include in this press release.)
Rest assured, I will continue to fight for your right to carry a gun, no matter what the political cost. Even if the political cost is the right to exist in public without getting gunned down. I’m sure that the justices I voted onto the Supreme Court will agree: the Constitution may guarantee a right to life, but once you’re born, there’s no right to living.
Here’s one thing we can all agree on: we need to address our nation’s mental health crisis. Now, I haven’t googled whether the shooter in question actually had any record of mental health issues. But I’ve thought long and hard about what explanation would absolve me of any responsibility for this incident, and writing off the shooter as a lunatic is the only reasonable conclusion.
I’ve been criticized for only paying lip service to mental health issues anytime there’s a mass shooting, but think about it — that means I’m bringing it up basically every other day! And if my party stays in power, I can confidently say that I will continue to be a tireless advocate for mental health issues for the rest of my life.
Now, let’s clarify what “addressing our nation’s mental health crisis” actually means. It does not mean I’m supporting any kind of government-run healthcare initiative. It does not mean I’m going to make any effort to dismantle our criminal justice system that locks up the mentally ill instead of treating them. In fact, it does not mean I’m going to introduce a bill of any kind that does anything.
(With the exception, of course, of a resolution that condemns this type of event in the same breath as chastising a refugee congresswoman. That’s proven to be remarkably effective.)
The point is: I didn’t say I wanted to solve our nation’s mental health crisis. I want to address it. Let me do so now.
Hey! Mental health crisis! Cut it out!
Having done everything in my power to address the mental health crisis, I want to make something absolutely clear: I condemn white supremacy, in all of its insidious forms. And on this issue, I am proudly standing shoulder-to-shoulder with the president, his cabinet, the Republican Party, ICE, and the military-industrial complex.
We’re all on the same side.