Mac’s Musings: It will take more than thoughts and prayers

Claude McIntosh ~ Mac's Musings
Mac’s Musings: It will take more than thoughts and prayers
An example of a handgun. TC Media file photo.
Claude McIntosh.

Cory Booker, the first African-American from New Jersey elected to the United States Senate, is neither stupid nor naive.

The 50-year-old has degrees from Stanford and Yale. He’s an up-and-comer in the Democratic Party.

Booker, who wants to be the next president (and the Toronto Blue Jays want to win a third World Series), believes he can put an end to mass shootings with an assault rifle ban here and a background check there. So do the other Democratic presidential nominee contenders.

Makes for a good sound byte on CNN and not much else. Nevertheless, better than Mitch McConnell’s worn-out “thoughts and prayers” and Donald Trump’s call on God to protect the good folks in El Paso and Toledo. Little late for that, Mr. President. And, “fake news” had it right. The second shooting was in Dayton. Hey, what the heck, same state.

But the shoot ’em up horse is out of the stable, as the saying goes. The U.S. has morphed into a violent society with a broken moral compass. Behind the scenes, the gun lobby (National Rifle Association) runs the show and has the number of legislators needed in its back pocket thanks to its campaign contributions bank account.

In a few weeks, the current call for tougher gun control laws will fade away until the next mass shooting at a school, night club or shopping centre. As CNN’s Don Lemon lamented, “How many times have we talked about this (gun control)?”

Mass shootings have become part of the American culture. Only is being used to describe mass shootings with five or fewer deaths. They get minimal coverage.
Think is getting worse. Read on.

In 1966 Charles Whitman killed his mother and wife then went to the Southern Methodist University campus and climbed to the top of the bell tower. In 90 minutes he shot 14 dead and wounded 31. It was the deadliest mass shooting in U. S. history.

Eighteen years later a gunman upped the record when he shot and killed 21 people and wounded 19 at a McDonald’s Restaurant in San Diego.

That record was broken in 1991 when a gunman stormed a cafeteria in Killeen, Texas. He killed 23 and wounded 27.

It took a few years, but that horrific record was shattered in 2007 when 32 people were shot and killed at Virginia Tech with 17 maimed.

In 2012, a shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School was the scene of a bloodbath that saw 28, mostly young students, shot and killed. If killing dozens of school kids in their classrooms doesn’t changed things, what does it take?

Then in 2016 came the deadliest slaughter of innocents went into the books when a gunman killed 49 and wounded 53 in a few minutes at an Orlando night club.

In the wake of the latest mass shootings critics are putting the blame for gun violence on Trump’s shoulders. But all of the above didn’t occur on his watch.

By all accounts, the Dayton shooting on the weekend could have set a new record if not for the swift action of police. In 33 seconds, the gun man, armed with a powerful assault rifle, managed to murder nine and wound 27 before a police bullet silenced him. It could have bumped Orlando to second place.

As one congressman said on Sunday, “Mitch McConnell and the rest of them can take thoughts and prayers and shove ’em.”

Amen!

HERE AND THERE Not many times does a black family move out of public housing to make way for a white family, but that is what the Obama family did in January, 2015. … Two-time Democratic Party presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders pitches himself as just a regular American fighting for the “little” guy. Sanders might not make the Fortune 500 list but he isn’t in need of a Bernie Tag Day. He just bought a $500,000 summer home on Lake Champlain in Vermont. He also has a home in Washington, D. C. and another home in Vermont.

THIS WEEK IN 1967 – Colonial Coach Bus Lines (its terminal was in the old Hotel Cornwallis block next to Shirley’s Restaurant) had an Expo 67 special. Return fare to the Montreal fair was $5. … City council passed a bylaw to purchase the property at the rear of the Cornwallis to provide a parking lot for 250 vehicles. … Coun. Ralph Cararra complained that Cornwall Street Railway was creating a hardship for many of its users by charging $1 for six bus tickets. … The union representing Courtaulds shift workers criticized Cornwall Street Railway’s decision to eliminate Sunday bus service after 6 p.m. .. . Residents north of the CNR tracks was told by city council that the extension of York Street to the area could be advanced to 1968. A traffic study recommended that York be extended north in 1969 after Sydney Street was extended past Ninth Street. The study said the extensions would eliminate the traffic bottleneck on Pitt at Ninth and Eleventh Streets. … Mayor Nick Kaneb said the city needed financial help from the provincial and federal governments to establish a public marina. … Cornwall Township Council said artificial ice could be in the arena in Long Sault in time for the upcoming season. … The average new home in Cornwall was $17,000, an increase of $2,000 in the previous two years. The average price of a building lot had reached $4,400. … Cornwall Street Railway planned to removed sections of track on Cumberland, Pitt and Marlborough streets. … City firefighters George Clarke, Robert St. Pierre and Denis Frampton were honoured for acts of bravery. … Cornwall Classical College announced that tuition fees were going up. Pre-university fee was $425, a $200 increase, while the university fee was $450, a increase of $150. The college noted that it received no provincial funding. … Top three batters in the North End Fastball League were Linden Wells, Courtaulds, .389, Larry Keen, Kastner’s, .383, Bill Griffith, Massena, .375. … Easton Chargers defeated Cornwall Mustangs 26-12 in an Inter-provincial Junior Football League game. Lionel “Red” Carriere and Glen Hooker had the Cornwall touchdowns.

TRIVIA Cornwall’s first golf course (nine holes) was opened by the Cornwall Golf and Boat Club in 1914. It was built on: 1) The future fair grounds just north of Ninth Street, 2) The Colquhoun farm on Hwy. 2 east of the town, 3) Windmill Point (now St. Lawrence College), 4) The Athletic Grounds, 5) On Hwy. 2 between Maple Grove and Mille Roches.

TRIVIA ANSWER The A & P Store was on Pitt Street, next to the Bank of Montreal, from 1937 until it moved to a modern supermarket (now Farm Boy) on Sydney Street in the early-1960s.

QUOTED Concerning the difference between man and the jackass: some observers hold that there isn’t any. But this wrongs the jackass. – Mark Twain

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