As the debate over gun control continues, legislators are employing a range of communication avenues to engage, inform and, it is hoped by many, affect change. Those for the enactment of new measures – such as universal background checks and a renewal of a one-time ban on assault weapons – face a formidable battle.
Vice President Joe Biden has been front and center not only with continuing in-person meetings with key decision makers and stakeholders but also online, including his hosting of an e-“fireside hangout’ public chat, hosted on Google +. He also continues his multi-media vocal appeal to all citizens to write, email, post, tweet and/or call their legislators in Washington to voice concerns and opinions through all platforms possible.
This week on Capital Hill, Senator Dianne Feinstein provided perhaps the most impressive display of communications firepower (pun intended) speaking on the issue before a backdrop that included pegboard panels mounted with scores of assault rifles and semi-automatic weapons her new bill proposes to ban. Perhaps even more striking was her being flanked by numerous police officers who firmly support her position. Enlisting law enforcement – those who put their lives on the line daily and know first hand the devastation such guns can cause - is vital and heretofore not been utilized to the fullest. If anyone possesses the credibility the control movement needs, it is them.
As for signs some may be listening to the voices of reason, in the midst of reform measures being put forth in New York state (with others now being considered in 10 states), Reed Exhibitions announced this week they were postponing a planned 9-day Eastern Sport and Outdoor Show, than had been scheduled to begin on February 2nd. Unsurprisingly, the NRA withdrew its support for the show and the decision by organizers to ban modern sporting rifles from the exhibition.
They say timing is everything. Perhaps this time, the tide is changing – due in no small part to tragic circumstance but also no doubt to a meeting of the masses through media.