I was in Death Valley for much of Labor Day weekend, sweating it out in 115-degree weather (seriously, I don’t understand how that’s a habitable climate — it’s like living inside of a hot car), and while I was there, I took a news and politics break. I didn’t see much beyond the headlines, so I knew about the mass shooting in Odessa, of course, but I somehow missed the fact that the shooter had gotten his gun — yet another AR-15 — from a private seller after failing his background check.
Retroactively, I then understood why Dan Crenshaw was making an argument against universal background checks yesterday, but also: Holy Shit! Dan Crenshaw, a Texas representative, was arguing against a requirement that actually would have prevented the Odessa shooting. The Odessa shooter — who failed a background check due to mental illness — bought from a private seller, and at the moment, background checks do not apply to private sellers, who provide 80 percent of the firearms used for criminal purposes. Ninety-six percent of felons who buy firearms get them from unlicensed dealers, who do not have to do background checks. That is an insane number. How many mass shootings and domestic violence killings could the United States prevent by simply requiring that private sellers conduct background checks?
Unfortunately, it’s not going to happen, at least not under the Trump administration. The Daily Show, however, has a novel solution: Make guns gay. Use that toxic masculinity against gun owners. But how do you make guns gay? According to The Daily Show’s Jaboukie Young-White, we’re almost there already: “Guns are gay. I mean, right off the bat, guns are what? Long, hard, and the best ones are black.”
Yeah, he went there. Jump straight to the 4:00 mark to hear Jaboukie Young-White’s pitch: