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TheMetropolitan InSight If football gods can be challenged, why not the gun lobby? At a time of 24/7 news cycles, along with communication toys that tend to promote the attention span of a gnat, the images are already beginning to fade. Flags at half-staff. Families torn apart. Twelve dead; including a six-year-old girl. Fift y-eight wounded and a nation again shocked – this time by the July 20th Aurora theater shootings and carnage. Ceremonies of grief. Deja-vu yet again. We’ve seen this bad movie too many times. Columbine… Virginia Tech… Platte Canyon High School… the New Life Church in Colorado Springs… Northern Illinois University… Fort Hood… Tucson and, now, Aurora. But since James Eagan Holmes “allegedly” opened fire in Aurora, other news has seized Page One of the mind . Olympic gold, Michael Phelps’ grit, Missy Franklin’s sunshine and Usain Bolt’s ego. Six Sikhs shot dead by a white supremacist at a Wisconsin Sikh temple, where the shooter killed himself. And, in Denver, the Peyton Manning Show – now showing at a pre-season theater near you. More on football gods later. When all the speeches are done this time, all the hand-wringing over and all the comments on “senseless tragedy” have been mouthed by all the talking heads, what will have changed ? If past is prologue, not a goddamn thing. This time, the discussion on gun control is scantier than ever. Now, you can’t even suggest strengthening gun laws for fear of the National Rifle Association marking you had guns, runs that reasoning, they would have fired back at Holmes – who was wearing head-to-toe armor – and prevented the tragedy. Picture it. Scores of movie-goers packing concealed guns. Then firing at Holmes and, in a gas-fi lled theater, shooting at each other’s gun-flashes. I feel safer already. In the wake of the recent Penn State scandal that revealed years of sexual abuse of young boys covered up by the athletic department – handmaiden to the all-powerful football program – sanctified football coach Joe Paterno was forced to resign and former assistant coach and pedophile-in-chief Jerry Sandusky was convicted of 45 counts of child abuse in June. Sandusky faces more years of jail time than he has left in life. Paterno, a football god with the most wins in major college football history, was disgraced and died shortly before his statue was quietly removed from its perch in front of the Nittany Lions’ Beaver Stadium. The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) fined Penn State $60 million, banned it from post-season bowl play for four years and reduced its number of football scholarships. Paterno’s wins since 1998 were also nullified. Since the NCAA ranks right up there with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) on the hypocrisy scale, the sanctions surprised some observers. Others argued that the penalties didn’t go far enough – as in a “death penalty” banning football altogether for a year. That, said critics, would have dire recruiting and TV-money consequences and sent a warning to other institutions where the football gods have become too big to fail. It may not be much of stretch to suggest that fan bases for big-time football and for lax gun laws sometimes overlap and share the same tent. If one can be challenged, why not the other? But don’t expect any action on guns before the November election. Or, sadly, anytime soon after. Comic strip created by Jorge Perez-Garcia • J. SEBASTIAN SINISI a Liberal Left Socialist who wants to see Big Government take everyone’s guns away – an NRA tag-line often echoed by the Far Right fire-eaters. For candidates seeking office, or incumbents trying to keep them, it’s ticklish. Like the Ku Klux Klan in the 1920s, the NRA’s reach can make and break candidates. When it sneezes, politicians catch pneumonia. Which may explain the tepid response by both Mitt Romney and Barack Obama to the Aurora shootings. Both issued perfunctory condolences and little more. Such is the NRA’s hold on the diluted discussion that, today, even a peep of protest or a call for tighter controls to make it tougher for a psychopath like Holmes to have three automatic weapons and 6,000 rounds of ammo, all bought LEGALLY, makes you an enemy of the U.S. Constitution’s Second Amendment as seen by the NRA. Despite decades of debate, what the Constitution’s framers meant by “a well-regulated militia” and “the right to bear arms” is still unclear. But we do know that “arms” for the Constitution framers were singleshot flintlock rifles that took time to reload, and not today’s lighting-fire automatic weapons that belong in no hands other than police or military. In the Aurora theater, one of the three weapons Holmes used was an AR-15 automatic rifle with a clip holding 100 rounds. Only because it jammed were more deaths likely prevented. A federal assault weapons ban, outlawing the sale of AR-15s, expired in 2004 due to NRA opposition and Congressional spinlessness. Which again begs the obvious question: what civilian needs 100-round clips of ammo and why are they still so easily available? The NRA argument is that if more people had guns – there are already more than 250 million guns in private American hands, according to the FBI – we’d all be safer. If movie-goers in the Aurora audience August 16, 2012 MetStaff Editor-in-Chief Brian T. McGinn: Managing Editor Ian Gassman: News Editor Nikki Work: Assistant News Editor Maalikah Hartley: MetroSpective Editor Caitlin Seivers: Assistant MetroSpective Editor Kayla Whitney: Sports Editor Angelita Foster: Assistant Sports Editor Zilingo Nwuke: Copy Editors J. Sebastian Sinisi Megan Mitchell Kate Rigot Photo Editor Ryan Borthick: Assistant Photo Editor Chris Morgan: Mike Fabricius: Web Editor Steve Anderson: Multimedia Editor Derek Broussard: Adviser Gary Massaro: Webmaster Drew Jaynes: Director of Student Media Steve Haigh: Assistant Director of Student Media Marlena Hartz: Administrative Assistant of Student Media Elizabeth Norberg: Production Manager of Student Media Kathleen Jewby: kjewby@ The Metropolitan accepts submissions in the form of topic-driven columns and letters to the editor. Column article concepts must be submitted by 1 p.m.. Thursdays and the deadline for columns is 9 p.m. Sundays. Columns range from 500 to 600 words. Letters to the editor must be submitted by 5 p.m. Mondays to be printed in that week’s edition. There is a 500-word limit for letters to the editor. The Metropolitan reserves the right to edit letters for formatting and style. All submissions should be sent by e-mail to The Metropolitan is produced by and for the students of Metropolitan State College of Denver and serves the Auraria Campus. The Metropolitan is supported by advertising revenue and student fees and is published every Thursday during the academic year and monthly during the summer semester. Opinions expressed within do not necessarily reflect those of Metropolitan State College of Denver or its advertisers. 7

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