20220526

America's War on Prevention

If America keeps failing with gun violence, that's fundamentally because she's waging war on prevention, and because the forces that feed upon these failures have faced impunity for too long.

Worse: constant mass shootings are only one of the nation's most obvious self inflicted traumas. At least, there, everybody knows the rules of the game: 

  • more people die of guns in the US than anywhere else, and not just because 332M Americans own 400M of them
  • implementing basic gun control laws (e.g. background checks) have always showed spectacular results, including in the States between the moment Bill Clinton signed the last batch and the moment Republicans blocked its prolongation
  • even if a vast majority of Americans (including within Republicans) support these laws, the NRA and the GOP keep distorting the 2nd Amendment to push even harder against any kind of oversight or accountability. 
  • the situation keeps worsening: Republicans are likely to sweep the Middterms, and the Supreme Court they reshaped against the will of the people is likely to dismantle the few remaining safeguards. This self-proclaimed 'pro-life' crew prefers to protect guns to protecting the lives of kids or pregnant teens.

America is not just sick, she doesn't want to heal.  

And that's exactly the same story with health in general. Even before the pandemic, America spent one third more per capita on healthcare than any other developed country, and yet saw her life expectancy plummet, the average health of her citizens being more worthy of a laggard.

Like with guns, there's a lot of money involved, but here, at least two families of lobbies are working in sinc to sink the boat: where everywhere else the focus is on prevention, Big Pharma and Big Food make sure that prevention is withdrawn from all policies, and that only the 'cures' they propose are considered. Because they couldn't gain more shares of stomachs, Big Food had the genius idea of supersizing our stomachs, and Big Pharma certainly can't complain because they make more money selling drugs that no one needs when they follow just a normal diet. And don't count on health associations to defend consumers: most of them are bankrolled by the same lobbies, and promote the very behaviors they're supposed to fight against.

The prevention of gun violence, obesity or heart diseases are national causes everywhere except in the US, where they would mean the end of the party for lobbies who need America to keep getting sicker instead of healing.

If these lobbies reach across the aisle, they've always worked in symbiosis with the Republican Party. But that party itself has given up all restraints, any ambition for common ground or common sense. And it's now waging war at all levels. 

Solutions to major problems are no-brainers? Let's dumb everybody further down, let's ban books, let's reject facts, truth, reason, and science. We want you to feel stupid, victimized, angry, we want you to replace critical thinking with systematic, blind criticism, we want you to forget about moderation and to live on a permanent conflictual mode.

The GOP not only stopped fighting racism, it's deliberately fueling it now, crushing voting rights for minorities, promoting voices that fuel hatred (exhibit A: Tucker Carson spreading the Great Replacement fallacy). The big tent has turned into a dangerous tin foil hat under which thrive the worst of the worst (Holocaust deniers and white supremacists are more welcome than ever).

Even if they know better, these guys will tell you with a straight face that the Earth is flat, that Trump won in 2020, and that arming teachers is the solution when even a squad of trained police officers are scared to face a teenager carrying assault weapons.

Pew Research on bipartisan support for gun control
NB: more data on Brady Campaign's website: bradyunited.org/resources



blogules 2022
Since 2003, nonsensical posts about noncritical issues in nonenglish (get your blogules transfusion in French)
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