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Regarding the latest school mass killing, I’ve come to believe politicians actually say, “My thoughts and prayers go out to the victims’ families, but not my vote.”

Why? Fear of NRA reprisals, even though most of its members want background checks. They want responsibility, accountability. Unfortunately, the NRA is merely a lobby for the gun industry.

Did you know that of the top ten recipients of NRA money, No. 7 was Iowa Sen. Joni Ernst receiving $3,124,273 — the only woman on that list. How will she please her big donor without deflecting to the mental illness strategy, that complex issue where gun legislation gets lost or marginalized?

In 1994 we had an Assault Weapons Ban, but it expired in 2004. We must pressure (through our votes) politicians to ban them permanently. They’re only for military and law enforcement. I was shocked when my seventh grade grandson’s baseball coach displayed an AR 15, this killing machine, as his lottery fundraiser prize. I did not contribute.

The gun deaths in our country point to a corruption of the Second Amendment. It is our duty to stop this corruption by voting only for lawmakers who will fight for thorough background checks and a permanent assault weapons ban.

Johanna Anderson, Osage

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