Dear Diane Feinstein and Gabrielle Giffords:
The U.S. Senate’s shameful vote on gun legislation last week must be especially disappointing and painful for the two of you.
Senator Feinstein, you tried to find a pulse for San Francisco Supervisor Harvey Milk by putting your finger in a bullet hole in his body after he was shot in City Hall. Both Supervisor Milk and Mayor George Moscone would die at the hand of an assassin that day in 1978.
Representative Giffords, your experience with guns is even more recent and more horrific. It was only two years ago when a gunman shot you, along with 18 other people at a constituent gathering. Six people died that day.
Your personal experiences have made you two of the most passionate advocates for reasonable gun legislation in the country. The majority of Americans agree with you when it comes to common sense expansion of background checks for gun buyers and banning assault weapons. But that wasn’t enough for a few Democratic Senators and the majority of Republican Senators who voted against reason and popular opinion last week.
Your experiences in San Francisco, California and Tucson, Arizona weren’t enough.
The mass killings at a movie theater in Aurora, Colorado and at a school in Newtown, Connecticut also weren’t enough.
What, then, is it going to take to get our elected officials to stand up to the gun lobby in this country?
Surely, not every politician has to be a witness, or a victim, of a horrendous shooting to find the courage to vote against the National Rifle Association.