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The Daily Countable: Guns & God

by Countable | 3.1.18

Congratulations. You made it to March. Spring is just around the massive Nor’easter.

Outside the U.S., and sometimes within it, Americans are accused of being desensitized to violence, habituated to school shootings. But in the two weeks since the shooting in Parkland, Florida, the debate over gun violence has barely seemed to wane.

Yesterday, as students returned to Stoneman Douglas High School, President Donald Trump met with a group of bipartisan lawmakers to discuss school safety and gun-control legislation. The president opened the session with 17 House and Senate lawmakers declaring: “We can’t wait and play games and nothing gets done. We want to stop the problems.”

The question, now, is how we stop it. Join the ongoing debate here.

On the Radar

That border wall! Will it ever get built? Should it? President Trump tweeted on Wednesday that he wasn't going to begin building the wall until Congress approves funds to cover the whole thing. Does he see the writing on the wall saying this thing is never getting built and he's setting himself up to be able to blame Congress? Is he setting the stage for more hardline immigration stances? No DACA without the wall? Is he going to blame California for everything?

Honestly, who even knows? Do you? Head on over to our story about this latest wrinkle in the border wall saga and tell us what you think is going on.

Under the Radar

Rev. Billy Graham will lie in honor in the Capitol Rotunda Wednesday for seven hours. He's only the fourth private citizen to lie in honor there in the history of the U.S., joining Rosa Parks, two Capitol police officers who died in the line of duty, and Pierre L'Enfant. Now that guy may have had a weird obsession with traffic circles (to the dismay and confusion of D.C. tourists ever since), but we wouldn't be able talk about "draining the swamp" if he hadn't figured out how to build a great city on top of one. What a guy!

Now, Graham? His honoring is more controversial. Many say he was a great man of God and a central advisor to many presidents, thus deserving of the honor. Others say honoring him violates constitutional restrictions around the separation of Church and State. Tell us and your reps what you think right here.

Your Gov at a Glance 👀

The White House: President Trump in DC

  • The president will receive his daily intelligence briefing before hosting a meeting on school safety.
  • He will then have lunch with Vice President Mike Pence and Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis, before meeting with senators.
  • Press Secretary Sarah Sanders will host an on-camera briefing at a time to be determined.

The House of Representatives: Out

  • The House will return Monday, March 5.

The Senate: In Session

  • Voting on the confirmation of A. Marvin Quattlebaum to be U.S, District Judge for the District of South Carolina.
  • Cloture vote on the nomination of Karen Scholer to be U.S. District Judge for the Northern DIstrict of Texas.
  • Cloture vote on the nomination of Tripp Self to be U.S. District Judge for the Middle DIstrict of Georgia.
  • Cloture vote on the nomination of Terry Doughty to be U.S. District Judge for the Western District of Louisiana.

Key Hearings

  • The Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee will consider the nomination of John F. Ring to be a member of the National Labor Relations Board.

But Wait! There's More!

And, in the End…

Thanks for joining us in February, and we hope you stick with us in March. Seems like the news may come in like a lion and out like…a tiger? A lioness? What we're saying is, expect a lot more stories.

—Josh Herman & Asha Sanaker

Talk to Managing Editor Andrea Seabrook via email, andrea [at] countable.us, or on twitter, @RadioBabe. And don’t forget to keep in touch @Countable.

Countable

Written by Countable

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(46)
  • Christine
    03/01/2018
    ···

    PLEASE! Someone explain this to me! He is not on par with Rosa Parks or the 2 Capitol Police officers. He was homophobic & racist. Is this what campaign donations buy these days? Is Mike Pence starting his THEOCRACY? Our Constitution says separation of church & state. This is UNCONSTITUTIONAL.

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  • NoHedges
    03/01/2018
    ···

    To those who believe gun ownership is an 'unalienable right', please consult the Declaration of Independence. From this side of the looking glass, our current lack of gun legislation would appear to be more at odds with our unalienable rights listed -ie life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness- than in alignment with it. In fact, it wasn't until 2008 that the Supreme Court ruled in favor of the 2nd Amendment application to a private citizen's rights -District of Columbia v. Heller. #TheSpinWontWin

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  • Matt
    03/01/2018
    ···

    Funny how the constitution is used as an argument to impeach Trump, but then becomes outdated when discussing gun laws...

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  • OlderNWiser
    03/01/2018
    ···

    The overarching issue is that we have a corrupt president probably installed by our enemy Russia, we have his corrupt appointees who can’t pass security, who are equally know nothing, uncurious, unethical people who are taking steps to establish a dictatorship by controlling speech and the press, disenfranchising the majority, destroying checks and balances and separation of state and church, scapegoating people of color and jailing them for profit, dismantling every protection for Americans daily, while raking in maximum profit personally. Our liberty is in profound crisis. Get them out before it is too late.

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  • James
    03/01/2018
    ···

    In the early 1860’s a traveling show came through Kansas selling tickets to see a cow lifted into the air by a hot air balloon. As the crowd gathered to watch this feat, the cow was lifted into the air on the tethered basket. Higher, higher it went, then suddenly without warning the cow broke through the bottom of the basket, hitting the ground and killing several people. The state legislature quickly made it illegal to lift a cow in a hot air balloon. Since that law there has never been another citizen killed by a falling cow. There is a fine example of how a law can prevent mass casualties. Alas, it may be the only time in history.

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  • George
    03/01/2018
    ···

    The Second Amendment is part of the Constitution and that should not even be discussed,that is every American Citizens right,God is every American’s right also,all that separation of Church and State is :That the State cannot impose a religion on its citizens or adopt a religion for the State!By the way this is a side note for all to ponder,since prayer was taken out of school because of one person back in 1962,most of our schools have experienced,morality issues,abortions,sexual identity crisis,bullying,rape,murder,disrespect for teachers,sexual harassment,threats,drug abuse!Before 1962 it was chewing gum in class or talking without permission!

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  • RadicalModerate
    03/01/2018
    ···

    Organized religion is designed to separate people from real spirituality. It’s a control mechanism. Preventing you from realizing your sovereign divinity is necessary to enslave you.

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  • Kalista
    03/01/2018
    ···

    Billy Graham should not be honored for his commit to God. That is a violation of the strict relationship between church and state. Graham should not be honored for his servitude to former presidents, either. When questioned regarding civil rights and racial/religious equality, Graham would often take a very conservative p.o.v. And speak against such things. He even told Nixon that he had many Jewish friends, but, he didn’t “know how I really feel about what they’re doing to this country.” He didn’t push us forward, but held us back.

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  • Michael
    03/01/2018
    ···

    America has always had lots of guns, but school shootings is a recent problem. So, what’s changed? It’s not guns because in the past we had lots of guns & less gun laws than we do now. Society has changed! The progressive war on God, Family values, morality, the glorification of violence, and the idea that violence against people you disagree with is acceptable. There’s your root cause, not guns. A gun is a tool, the cause is the culture the progressive left has created. There’s NO correlation between high numbers of guns per/cap & violent crime. Britain has higher rates of violent crimes than America with almost no guns. Australia’s violent crime was decreasing at the same rate as America’s even before the gun confiscation and is still no better than America after. Also, no one wants to consider the 1.5 million people per year who are still alive today because they had a gun to defend themselves. Many of them women. Those are the ones that are reported. It’s estimated that 40% of these aren’t reported because no shot was fired. Are these people’s lives unimportant? The idea that it’s the guns is just plain false, and if you’re objective and look at the data it’s clear unless you’re a liar or an idiot. As for Billy Graham, I know of him. I didn’t follow him that closely, but I think he was honest about his convictions and I don’t see a problem with honoring him. Those who try to apply “separation of church & state” to this haven’t a clue of what they’re talking about, and is more evidence how the government run education system has failed in this country. Speaking of education, consider this: the creation of the Department of Education in 1980, God is removed from school, less than 20yrs later the school shootings start. Coincidence? On top of that we go from #1 in education to what, 27th. Yeah, great job. https://youtu.be/31nHOYTSap4

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  • David
    03/01/2018
    ···

    Billy Graham was God’s ambassador and servant. He provided comfort to presidents, therefore being the appropriate person to receive such an honor. It is not unconstitutional to do this, but rather, exercising our freedom to practice religion, which is constitutional.

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  • Marylynn
    03/01/2018
    ···

    I guess our lawmakers only believe in separation of church and state when it suits them. It's sickening that nothing has been done legally about gun control, because the NRA owns our lawmakers. I applaud Dick's Sporting Goods and Walmart for implementing their own policies regarding the sale of guns. It's too bad our own lawmakers are useless when it comes to doing their job.

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  • SneakyPete
    03/02/2018
    ···

    “Thought of the day” ““Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. “. - John F. Kennedy ”. 3*3*18.

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  • Barbara
    03/01/2018
    ···

    Re: Guns. When does government accept the blame for this issue? Do not take away our 2nd amendment rights. You’ve made it difficult enough already to buy a gun in NY state. The blame for this issue is squarely on your shoulders. Fix the communication between state and federal law enforcement and spend some money on securing our schools. It works in Israel. Changing the legal age to 21 to own a gun is meaningless. Our sons and daughters can be drafted into the military at 18, if needed. School districts are also to blame if they haven’t properly secured their schools yet. What do we pay such high property taxes for? I feel that politicians are sometimes looking out for themselves rather than their constituents. Re: Billy Graham. He deserves the honor of resting in Capitol for two days. This should not even be an issue. Let him Rest In Peace.

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  • Kim
    03/01/2018
    ···

    My take on this is political expediency that was probably pitched to him by Pence or maybe a political consultant. The goal is to try to reinforce the illusion that Trump is now suddenly a godly man and to allow the evangelicals to keep giving him ‘mulligans’ for his past, present and future sins.

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  • Jerome
    03/01/2018
    ···

    The separation of church and state was meant to keep the state out of the church, not the church out of the state. The second amendment is not at odds with the pursuit of life, liberty, and happiness!!! People would do themselves and this country a huge favor if they would actually read the constitution instead of listening to what liberal lawyers and the media says it is. And then actually reading the federalist and anti-federalist papers!!! Look up what our founding fathers said about gun control and gun ownership!!! They wanted everyone to carry a gun!!! Read all the reasons why!!! They were visionaries and just by reading those papers and there thoughts on guns you can see that they knew what was coming in the future!!! God and guns are not the problem, it’s the people!!!

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  • Wallace
    03/01/2018
    ···

    Please pass strong gun laws! We need to address cyber security before funding the southern border wall. Graham is a non issue but I do not think deserving of the honor.

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  • Robert
    03/01/2018
    ···

    Here are initial steps Congress can take to reduce gun violence. -Ban all automatic and semi-automatic rifles and shotguns. -Ban magazines/clips holding over 6 rounds. -Require registration and insurance for all firearms. -Revolvers and pistols holding 6 rounds remain legal -Single action bolt, lever, or pump rifles and shotguns with magazines holding 6 or fewer rounds remain legal -Mandatory background checks. -Require mandatory gun violence studies on gun violence. Take the donations you receive from the NRA and publicly announce that you are giving those donations to organization and municipalities that embark on measures to improve school safety. Then lead the effort to create laws that reduce gun violence in America. Do it! NOW!

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  • John
    03/01/2018
    ···

    The right to ownership of Firearms is a Responsibility, just like freedom of Speech. As such, you are expected to be responsible for the privilege given. Just as the right to freedom of Speech does not exempt you from the responsibility of what you decide to voice, the right to own firearms does not except you from outside critiques highlighting current negative impacts to society. Instead of NRA stubbornness, perhaps providing constructive solutions would be more effective...

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  • ManfromNebraska
    03/01/2018
    ···

    Billy Graham simply spoke the Word of God, men are sinners (obvious), God sent His Son to die for mankind’s sin, He rose from the dead three days later as He said He would showing God accepted His sacrifice, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” ‭‭John‬ ‭3:16‬ ‭ Jesus is the one way to God. “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” Acts‬ ‭4:12‬ ‭God wants us to know for sure. “These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.” ‭‭1 John‬ ‭5:13‬. We can know if we will spend eternity with God. By placing our faith in what Jesus Christ did for us. The message is far more important then the messenger. Mr. Graham did what God asked, deliver my Word to others. “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.” Matthew‬ ‭28:19-20‬ ‭What must we do to be saved? “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” ‭‭Romans‬ ‭10:9-10, 13‬ Thankful for those who shared the Good News with me.

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  • Gerald
    03/01/2018
    ···

    I guess when I am rational that Graham doesn’t matter in the scope of importance and the separation of church and state remains intact. Guns, well, anything less than a ban on assault weapons is a failure to address the problem. Raising the age limit three years is like standing naked in a swamp and swatting one mosquito. The NRA will pretend to be outraged, President trump will say he stood up to the NRA, and we will settle down to graze while they take a deep breath and congratulate each other from being forced to take meaningful action. The next time a predator removes more of us or our children with an assault weapon we will “moo” loudly, stampede in circles, and then settle down to chew our cuds like always. It’s what cattle do. You have horns. Use them in 2018.

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