The response by the Republican Presidential candidates to the latest mass shooting in San Bernardino, plus the fact that only one Republican Senator voted to deny terrorists access to high-powered assault rifles, forces us to face six painful facts about U.S. society:
1. No amount of mass shootings, evidence, and rational arguments to the contrary are enough to change the deep-seated beliefs of Republicans regarding the rights of Americans to own guns. Any attempts to change such beliefs are doomed.
2. We are held hostage to a 200 year-old, antiquated law--the Second Amendment--that is completely unsuited to modern times. Attempts to change the Second Amendment are doomed.
3. Instead of calling for sensible gun controls, every mass shooting only causes people to arm themselves even more. Attempts to de-arm this society are doomed.
4. Grieving for innocent victims does nothing to stop the carnage. We're just bidding our time before the next mass shooting. We're doomed to experience them again and again.
5. Calls for better mental health programs and understanding of the motives of shooters are a gigantic diversion. We're doomed if we think that any society can safely manage over 300 million guns.
6. The American people, and especially their representatives, show little will in taking action. We are doomed!
I am left with the painful conclusion that there is nothing that will change this society's attitudes towards guns. In short, the Right has won. They control this society.
If you want to live in a country where you are not afraid to go to school, church, the movies, holiday parties, etc., the only option is to move to another country that is not afraid to enact strict gun control laws. This is not that society. We are ruled by madness and fear.
Ian I. Mitroff is Professor Emeritus from USC. He is a Senior Investigator in The Center for Catastrophic Risk Management at UC Berkeley. He is President of Mitroff Crisis Management. His most current book is Dumb, Deranged, and Dangerous: A Smart Guide to Combatting Dumb Arguments.