Will “Presidential Fury” Prevent More “Routine” Speeches On Mass Shootings?


Amer­ic­ans saw an angry and frus­trated pres­id­ent Thursday even­ing, a pres­id­ent who has reached his break­ing point as more in­no­cent vic­tims of gun vi­ol­ence are coun­ted and more fu­ner­als are planned. For the 15th time in his ten­ure, Pres­id­ent Obama had to face the cam­er­as to some­how lead the na­tion in griev­ing the carnage left in the wake of a lone gun­man, reports the National Journal. As he did the pre­vi­ous 14 times, he offered con­dol­ences to the griev­ing, pray­ers for the fallen, and in­vest­ig­a­tions for the facts. Gone this time was the sub­dued resig­na­tion that polit­ics in Wash­ing­ton and a hos­tile Con­gress keep him from go­ing fur­ther. This time, he vowed to go against those odds in a des­per­ate bid to make sure that nev­er again would he have to make what he bit­terly de­scribed as a now-routine speech.

A pres­id­ent famed for his cool was vis­ibly shaken; a politi­cian noted for his cal­cu­la­tion was ready for a fight he is likely to lose. He has tried be­fore to change gun laws and didn't deny that he may fail in this latest bid to pass laws mak­ing mass shoot­ings less likely. He made clear that this is a fight he is eager to wage in his re­main­ing 15 months in of­fice. He all but dared the Na­tion­al Rifle As­so­ci­ation and its al­lies in Con­gress to op­pose him, out­right ap­peal­ing to gun own­ers to join his cru­sade. Mock­ing the well-prac­ticed ar­gu­ments against re­strict­ive gun laws, an ex­as­per­ated Obama asked, “Does any­body really be­lieve that?” The months to come will de­term­ine if pres­id­en­tial fury will work any bet­ter than his past, more-con­ven­tion­al lob­by­ing and speech­mak­ing.

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