In a sane and humane America – the one that doesn’t exist – we’d bar suspected terrorists from buying guns, we’d require universal background checks, and we’d bar all civilians (especially twisted idiots) from stalking our streets with weapons of war.
But since this will never happen – tomorrow’s Senate votes on gun reform are reportedly pre-doomed — we should at least take a moment to salute Connecticut Senator Chris Murphy for his 15-hour filibuster, his eloquent plea for sanity. With help from Democratic colleagues, he reminded lawmakers of their abiding disgrace, of their inertia in the face of tragedy, of their determination to react to each and every bloodbath by doing absolutely nothing.
The NRA’s Capitol Hill lackeys refused to bend after the slaughter of little kids at Sandy Hook, so they certainly won’t budge an inch after the slaughter of gay Latinos. But kudos to Murphy anyway for his call to conscience. He finished the 15th hour by invoking the memory of a Sandy Hook student – and the teacher who tried to shelter him.
To Murphy, I yield the floor:
When Adam Lanza walked into that classroom, and aimed his military-style assault weapon, with clips attached to it holding 30 bullets, Ann Marie Murphy probably had a chance to run or to hide or to panic. And instead Ann Marie Murphy made the most courageous decision that any of us could imagine. Instead of running, instead of hiding, instead of panicking, she found Dylan Hockley and embraced him. You know why we know that? Because when the police entered the classroom, that’s how they found Dylan Hockley – dead, wrapped in the embrace of Ann Marie Murphy.
It doesn’t take courage to stand here on the floor of the United States Senate for two hours, or six hours, or 14 hours. It doesn’t take courage. It doesn’t take courage to stand up to the gun lobby when 90 percent of your constituents want change to happen. It takes courage to look into the eye of a shooter and instead of running, wrapping your arms around a six-year-old boy and accepting death – as a trade for just a tiny little itty piece of increased peace of mind. For a little boy under your charge.
And so this has been a day of questions. And so I ask you all this question: If Ann Marie Murphy could do that, then ask yourself: What can you do to make sure that Orlando, or Sandy Hook, never ever happens again? With deep gratitude to all those who have endured this very very late night, I yield the floor.
Happy Father’s Day to all of us dads.