House Speaker Paul Ryan assured us that after the Las Vegas massacre this week, the bill to make it easier for gun owners to buy silencers is probably dead this session.
It will be interesting to see how many of the proposals pending before legislatures across the country again this year to make it even easier for people to buy and display firearms will be put on the back burner if only out of a sense of decency.
That includes a bill laughingly labeled "the right to carry" that's already passed the Wisconsin Senate's Judiciary and Public Safety Committee. It would amend the state's already-lenient concealed carry law to allow anyone to carry a concealed weapon without bothering to get a permit or taking the time to get some training on how to use it.
Even though law enforcement officials have labeled this atrocious piece of legislation "insane," it sailed through the committee on a 3-2 vote. The three votes, naturally, came from Republicans who the National Rifle Association thinks are just great.
Just what we need in a nation that leads the rest of the world in gun violence by a huge margin.
Mass shootings occur somewhere in the country several times a month. Yet after each of them, our political leaders offer their condolences and prayers, call the perpetrators "evil" and then do absolutely nothing to try to change a gun culture that is nothing less than a cancer on American society.
We can't even talk about closing background-check loopholes that allow thugs and the troubled to buy firearms on the internet or at gun shows. We once had a ban on assault weapons. Not any longer, after the NRA got its toadies in Congress to let it expire.
Even an Obama-era provision that prevented those with such a severe mental disability that they couldn't handle their own finances from getting a weapon was overturned by Donald Trump to the cheers of the NRA.
As many have written since the Las Vegas tragedy, we'll pray and express our shock for a few days and then go on our merry way until the next mass shooting occurs.
It will go on this way until American voters decide to get rid of their government representatives who don't have the guts to buck the NRA and its campaign contributions.
But, at least for a little while, we'll keep making it tough to buy silencers.
Dave Zweifel is editor emeritus of The Capital Times. firstname.lastname@example.org and on Twitter @DaveZweifel
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