Barack Obama’s initial verbal response to the awful cinema killings in Aurora – "We may never understand what leads anybody to terrorize their fellow human beings like this. Such violence, such evil is senseless. It’s beyond reason" – seem comforting at first. But when taken in conjunction with his country’s morbid gun culture and its aggressive foreign policy, such remarks are blatantly foolish.
Likewise foolish was his tasteless humour during a recent public speech when he said in relation to his daughters’ future boyfriends – "Boys, don’t get any ideas. I have two words for you – ‘Predator Drones’ – you will never see it coming”. A truly sickening joke, given the suffering and death such Drone attacks have inflicted on countless civilians in poor countries.
Vile acts like that witnessed in Colorado – and in Yemen, Afghanistan and Pakistan where the victims and survivors never see the attacks coming – can only be addressed through a major rethink of the wanton wastefulness of the arms industry and much US foreign policy that has wrought untold violence in many parts of the world at huge human and financial cost. Such saved resources could be invested in useful social projects that could uplift American society from what Martin Luther King once called its ‘spiritual death’ and possibly safe it from itself.
Sadly this will not be happening anytime soon as both Barack Obama and Mitt Romney indulge in an orgy of distractive political electioneering that will play to the gallery of ‘perceived security through violence’ and to the twin interest group of the homegrown gun-toting lobby and the Industrial Military Congressional Complex.
PRO Steering Committee,
Irish Anti War Movement,
PO Box 9260,