ThinkProgress posted a piece yesterday entitled “Romaine lettuce is too dangerous to be in stores, but guns are still available 24 hours per day.”
In the article, the author laments that the government is swift to protect citizens from an E.coli outbreak but when it comes to gun violence, they simply look the other way.
Food safety is certainly an important thing to get right, but the number of Americans who die from foodborne illness every year — 3,000 according to the CDC — is dwarfed by the 30,000-plus annual fatalities caused by guns in America.
On Thanksgiving Day, after the federal government had taken swift action to protect citizens from pathogen-laden romaine leaves, one male teen suspect in a Birmingham, Alabama mall allegedly shot and injured two others, including a 12-year-old girl. He was pursued by police, shot, and killed. Those were not the only casualties caused by guns that day.
They go on to say that while there is a constitutionally protected right to own a firearm, lettuce has no such amendment and that 2A was written during the time of muskets.
While firearm ownership within the context of a well-regulated militia is protected by the Constitution’s Second Amendment and there is no constitutional protection for any vegetable, much less lettuce, the Bill of Rights was written when slow-loading muskets made the idea of a mass shooting an improbable nightmare. The technological upgrades in the almost 250 years since then have allowed carnage to unfold in emergency rooms across the country.
And that conservatives are resistant to federal public health studies on the effect of gun violence yet seem to have no issues with studying E. coli.
Unfortunately, the ability of the public health sector to study gun violence as a public health issue has been hamstrung by the gun industry and their conservative allies in government, who support bans on federally funded research on the topic. Pathogens like E. coli, however, face no such resistance.
Comparing gun deaths to lettuce with a pathogen is quite silly and as you can imagine, responses on Twitter were hilarious.
I didn’t know that Remington and Winchester made Salad Shooters? #LastToKnow
— Fred Mitchell (@GoRamPa) November 24, 2018
I'd be pretty upset if they allowed guns tainted with E. coli to still be sold in grocery stores.
— Nathan Harmon (@nharmon) November 24, 2018