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Blood-Soaked Doctors Take to Twitter to Respond to the NRA Telling Them to Stay in Their Lane.

By Petr Navovy | Social Media | November 13, 2018 |

By Petr Navovy | Social Media | November 13, 2018 |


America is a land of extreme contrasts and contradictions. On the one hand it can create the most wonderful things. Cinema, TV, music—transcendental testaments to human creativity pour out of America at a ludicrous rate. On the other hand you have all that racism, capitalism, and imperialism. Contemplating America’s poles can sometimes make one dizzy.

I hate to be that mug who quotes Charles bloody Dickens but those opening lines from ‘A Tale of Two Cities’ do seem particularly apt here.

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to Heaven, we were all going direct the other way…

Some might say that America is not a special country, merely a large and loud one. That every nation makes great art, everybody has an ugly side, and that it’s just the case that America has the most power and the most money—so of course things are gonna seem more pronounced there than in other places. America exercises a form of cultural hegemony that rivals its military and financial arms in terms of the stranglehold it has on the world. It exports its stories and values around the globe in a ceaseless torrent of incalculable power. So of course it’s going to feel special.

There is one area however in which America truly is an unmitigated, quantifiable outlier. Gun violence. Considering its status as an OECD nation and its ostensibly high position on the nation developmental ladder (ignoring for the moment some rather ugly truths about that ladder, and of America’s place on it), the rate of gun violence that afflicts America really does make it a terribly remarkable place. It is a country in the grip of a paradoxically permanent paroxysm of self-inflicted death. The epidemic is not an accident, and there are parties and agents at whose feet responsibility can be laid. Mike wrote a wrote a pretty damming diagnosis of the problem the other day.

It’s always interesting to see how people in America respond to the endless procession of killings that blight the country. Most people, naturally, exhibit differing mixtures of grief, horror, exhaustion, rage, and compassion. Recently, in the wake of the awful shooting in California (and I hate how tragically generic a template sentence that sounds), it was the nation’s doctors who chose to respond by adding their voice to the calls of ‘enough is enough’.

And then you have the National Rifle Association. The good ol’ NRA. The good ol’, spent-more-than-$5-million-on-political-lobbying-in-2017 NRA. Their response to the doctors’ response was: Mind your own business. Or in the parlance of our times, #StayInYourLane.

So the doctors in turn responded to that.

#StayInYourLane was answered with #ThisIsOurLane

It started with Dr Judy Melinek, and it went from there. (Fair warning: some slightly disturbing imagery ahead.)

Shocking, sobering, heartrending imagery.

An impassioned, desperate plea for change from those at the front lines of an unnecessary war.

Will anything change?

Probably not.

Header Image Source: Twitter