Coming to you directly from the Hart Senate Office building where the Senate Judiciary Committee is conducting the first hearing on gun regulation since the Newtown mass shooting, entitled, “What Should America Do About Gun Violence?”
In his remarks, Senator Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) continued a trend of citing emotionally wrenching anecdotes involving particularly vulnerable individuals, up to that point roughly a dozen dead children and one young mother. And then there were two.
Graham discussed an incident in which a Georgia woman hiding from an intruder with her two infant children emptied a revolver into his face, striking him five times. He displayed a poster comparing a revolver with a semi-automatic handgun and a high-capacity magazine side-by-side, as well as a wood-bodied rifle and a black military-style rifle.
Gayle Trotter‘s earlier assertion that she speaks for millions of women in advocating lawful access to assault weapons for personal defense had elicited widespread laughter from the public gallery. Mr. Graham pointed to this as an illustration of honest differences in perspective and life experience, which he understood. He also noted that he has an AR-15 in his home because he thinks that is the best option for his personal self-defense. His discussion hung on a single question: “Am I an unreasonable American?”
“Yes,” murmured someone in the public gallery, rejecting his desire to give law-abiding citizens, such as the Georgia mother, access to high-capacity magazines. What if she had faced a second intruder, he queried.
“I do not think I am an unreasonable person because I think there are some circumstances in which a fifteen-round magazine makes sense,” he ultimately concluded, offering this as his reason for opposing “the legislation” that would broaden the definition of and ban assault weapons.