Morally bereft political calculus

Dear President Trump,

Although it has apparently already slipped below the “this is top news” section of the WP, there was a lengthy article this morning about the gun violence school walk out yesterday. Unfortunately it unhelpfully said “tens of thousands” took part, but given that kids from thousands of schools across the country participated, the real numbers have to be in the hundreds of thousands. Here at our daughter’s school, kids from most of the other high schools in town gathered at our athletic field and then walked the mile plus down to the University of Washington’s central square. Our daughter attended and said she especially liked seeing the elementary school kids cheering everyone on. She also said she’d been hearing from some adults that the best thing kids could do to promote safety is to stay in school (as in don’t protest) and she was incredulous that anyone would think that doing what they always do (go dutifully to school everyday) would effect any change.

I’ve been thinking about the calculus you all must be doing (and by you all, I mean you, other politicians financed by the NRA, and the NRA) to sort out whether to continue making a show of taking these young people seriously. On the one hand the majority of them cannot yet vote and they almost certainly have no money to put behind specific campaigns so those are both big plusses on the side of just blowing them off. No votes & no money = no real worries for you. This is probably not unlike the calculus made time and time again by those in power when disenfranchised people have pushed for change. So, you all could just wait this out and throw the students a bone or two (like just banning bump stocks) if you want to stick with a morally bereft political calculus. You could and you probably will. But things are changing as it becomes clear how jealously you all are guarding your power and wealth at the expense of absolutely everyone else’s lives, liberty, and ability to pursue happiness. So you may be able to extend your reign a little longer, but history is not going to look back kindly on those of you who opted to peddle a few more AK-47’s in exchange for even one more child’s life.

May kids feel and be safe in their schools, homes, and neighborhoods.
May kids be safe to pursue happiness.
May kids’ feel and be safe so they can focus in healthy ways on school and life.
May kids see tangible evidence that adults prioritize their well-being over wealth.

Sincerely,
Tracy Simpson

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