The Catholic bishop of Brownsville, Texas, has unleashed on those who idolize guns as children are felled by bullets.
“Don’t tell me that guns aren’t the problem, people are. I’m sick of hearing it,” Bishop Daniel Flores tweeted last week amid the debate over gun control after the fatal shooting of 19 children and two teachers in Uvalde.
“The darkness first takes our children who then kill our children, using the guns that are easier to obtain than aspirin. We sacralize [make sacred] death’s instruments, and then are surprised that death uses them,” he wrote.
Flores is particularly upset by the twisted view that somehow gun ownership is a sacred right, regardless of all consequences. (Some Donald Trump fans at his rally in Wyoming Saturday were wearing T-shirts reading: “God, Guns and Trump.”)
“The Church’s expectation [is] that civil society must seek after the common good — and that means protecting the vulnerable,” Flores said in an interview Thursday with the Catholic news publication The Pillar. “There are certain laws that need to be constructed in a way that promote the best possible stewardship of human life, and of a peaceable community,” he added.
Yet anytime there’s an attempt to “control weapons that can cause grave damage [it] is countered with a description that [gun ownership] is basically an individual’s sacred right — that no matter what the cost, it must be preserved,” Flores said.
It “becomes an untouchable aspect in the discourse,” he said.
“When you sacralize it, you make it basically closed for discussion, because we practically treat it as if it were sacred,” he said. But the fact is that some weapons “pose a grave threat to the good of the whole,” he added.
Restrictions on weapons following mass shootings outside of the U.S., including in the U.K. and New Zealand, have proved effective in preventing further gun violence. A bipartisan group in the Senate began work on a solution to prevent mass shootings before breaking for the holiday weekend; lawmakers won’t return until June 6.
Check out the bishop’s full interview in The Pillar here.