Is a demographic solution to American gun mayhem inevitable?

Filed in National by on May 27, 2014

Twenty years ago it would have been hard to imagine the our country’s present acceptance gay marriage. In 1994, the year in which The American Medical Association first opposed treatments intended to cure homosexuality, if you had predicted that homosexuals would be a protected class and that it would be illegal to fire a person for being gay in 2014, you would have sounded like a crazy person. But times have changed. Old, angry a-holes die off by the day and they are replaced by younger people with, by and large, a more mature and less terror-filled world view.

So it is fitting to wonder what might our gun mayhem situation be like 20 years from now. Whereas now we need to allow psychotic criminals easy access to guns because a highly mobilized minority think the only alternative to that is “tyranny” – what might the demographic picture look like in 2034? As the hysterical nuts who are currently enjoying their last gasps die off, will they be able to replace themselves with equally terrified youths at a rate that keeps gun mayhem alive for another generation?

The demographics argue against it, but that doesn’t mean that the NRA is not trying to turn the next generation into terrified nutbags. Unlike the nation’s Opera companies or the GOP, the NRA is not planning on letting the underwriters of their lavish lifestyles to simply peeter out. They see the trends and they are now making a point of appealing to a young demographic with more aspirational – less terror filled advertising. And knowing that Charlton Heston’s cold dead hand wasn’t the best front man, the NRA has added a young, hip, less shrill spokesperson/youtube channel host.

Of course, the advancement in gay rights over the past 20 years hasn’t all been due to demographics. The diligent work of scores of people educating their families, friends and workplaces made the most out of the demographics. They moved the needle tirelessly over the past twenty years. Can gun sanity be a cause that generates a similar movement of committed activists? With each mass shooting, I think that day draws a little closer. Groups like Mom’s Demand Action were invisible in this debate two years ago. In another two years who knows where we’ll be.

About the Author ()

Jason330 is a deep cover double agent working for the GOP. Don't tell anybody.

Comments (14)

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  1. puck says:

    Social stability depends on a large and growing middle class with easy access ramps. Increased social instability of all forms probably is the result of our long-term cheap labor policies. Without jobs or living wages, I don’t think a new crop of younger people is going to be any saner about guns than the last generation. Statistically an aging population tends to result in lower rates of violent crime, not the other way around.

  2. Jason330 says:

    That’s a good point about a stable middle class, but how much can gun mayhem vs. gun sanity be viewed as a defining social issue similar to gay and reproductive rights?

    The aged crackpots on the ever more gun mayhem side of the argument see it that way and that activism gives them leverage far beyond their numbers.

  3. Massacres happen every day in this country and I don’t understand how we as a country allow it. Enough is enough!

  4. Liberal Elite says:

    @J “The aged crackpots on the ever more gun mayhem side of the argument see it that way and that activism gives them leverage far beyond their numbers.”

    The tide will shift. The fraction of households with guns is now at the lowest point in 50 years, and that continues to drop. The guns we do have become concentrated in the hands of fewer and fewer fanatics. There comes a tipping point when enough voters will want to join the actual civilized world.

    It’s also bad for business… all sorts of businesses. Corporate interests lie in solving this problem.

  5. Jason330 says:

    Great points. The NRA and GOP are facing similar issues as they sell a large and larger percentage of their bullshit to a smaller and smaller number of suckers. If they now try to turn the dial the other direction, their most loyal suckers will literally go postal.

  6. Dorian Gray says:

    A maniac slaughtered a classroom full of first graders and a weak gun control bill couldn’t pass. I’ve given up using very much of my intellectual resources on this issue. Common sense regulation would be nice. For example treating gun ownership like driving: license, registration and insurance. That’s all. And you need to renew ever few years. But we can’t even discuss that because it’s somehow radical..

    So… I give up.

  7. Jason330 says:

    I can’t blame you. I was where you are now, but the feeling passed.

  8. bamboozer says:

    We deserve it, we let it happen and we let it go on. Massacres are growing more frequent and gun violence a way of life. What would change this and quickly? Mow down a few politicians, billionaires or CEO’s. But like a few others I see no real hope of any real change, demographics or not.

  9. Jason330 says:

    Battered spouse syndrome.

  10. puck says:

    “What would change this and quickly? Mow down a few politicians, billionaires or CEO’s. ”

    As an advocate of non-violence I would hope the shots all miss. But if shots do fly, the policy goal should be economic justice and loftier than just a change in gun policy.

  11. SussexAnon says:

    There are currently laws on the books preventing psychotic criminals from purchasing or possessing guns.

    Just sayin’

  12. puck says:

    “There are currently laws on the books preventing psychotic criminals from purchasing or possessing guns. ”

    Of course, but what if they are psychotic but not yet criminals?

  13. Jason330 says:

    So does Austrailia.

  14. SussexAnon says:

    There are laws governing the mentally ill owning guns, too.

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