American can-do vanishes when the NRA check arrives

By Robert Mann

The instinct is common; the pattern is clear: When people die in accidents or from defective or faulty products, Americans are quick to assess the problem and work to prevent it from happening again. For instance:

Whenever a commercial airliner crashes and kills hundreds of people, we determine the cause and work to prevent similar occurrences. That’s why airlines are the world’s safest mode of travel.

On American highways, cars often cross medians and strike oncoming traffic. That’s why many states, including Louisiana, erect barriers to prevent future crashes.

After decades during which more than 40,000 — sometimes 50,000 — people died annually on our highways, federal law in 1968 required automakers to install seat belts in new cars. By 1998, the government also mandated airbags in all new automobiles.

When someone tainted bottles of Tylenol with potassium cyanide in 1981, killing seven people in the Chicago area, it sparked a revolution in the packaging of over-the-counter medication and resulted in the 1983 Federal Anti-Tampering Act.

Following the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, the federal government dramatically increased security at airports and on airplanes. 

A would-be shoe bomber tried to blow up a plane on a flight from Paris to Miami in 2001. Today, most U.S. passengers cannot board a commercial jet without removing their shoes.

After 32 infants died in drop-down cribs from 2000 to 2010, the federal Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC) banned the manufacture, sale and resale of such cribs.

In the 1980s, more than 6,000 people were injured in lawn dart accidents. In 1982, an errant dart killed a 7-year-old child in California. By 1988, the CPSC banned them in the United States.

Thousands of children once opened medicine bottles and died or became ill after they ingested the contents. Today, child-resistant caps are used for almost all medicine bottles and many other products, such as pesticides and other household chemicals.

Several dozen people, including children, died each year after being locked inside the trunks of cars. In 2001, the federal government required that all new passenger vehicles with trunks must be equipped with an interior release latch. 

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5 Responses to American can-do vanishes when the NRA check arrives

  1. Gilda Hagan-Brown says:

    October 6, 2017

    Subject: Louisiana is Sick and Dying

    Hello Robert,

    What a painfully true narrative of our State and City. I really enjoyed reading your article.

    Growing up in Marrero, LA and spending most of my time with family in and around the City of New Orleans, I began to take notice of the generational curses of my family and others in the world around me in my late teens. I was always amazed that everyone was so complacent with where they were in life and happy to just “BE.”

    After following the cursed footsteps of almost every woman in the family before me – I got pregnant much earlier than I should have. Though much older than most (20 years old) with my first child, I was forced to look at my life and position it in the direction “I” thought it should go. Although, I loved New Orleans, I traveled to Washington, DC in the mid 80s and was never the same when I returned home – leaving me no alternative but to pack up my life as a new mother and make my own way. Determined to successfully raise my “boy child” without the interference of the ignorance of the family curse that molded me was a daily struggle. At times, I wondered was it all worth it because now 30 years later – I am still as homesick as I was the first day I moved away.

    I’ve worked extremely hard making a name for myself and building a life for my family. Through it all, I always wished I could have had the same life and success in New Orleans. My kids always loved visiting and spending summers there and were always “Proud To Call It Home!”

    Now, 30+ years later, we are empty nesters and have recently sold our home in Virginia to return to my roots and enjoy Louisiana by sharing and creating new traditions for the purpose of enriching the lives of my grown kids and the younger generations to come. Call me … “The One That Breaks The Curse!”

    Thanks for your contributions to our great State and City! I too look forward to making a difference!

    Best to you!


    Liked by 1 person

  2. Frank Campbell says:

    Did you realize that in the most publicized shootings of the last 25 years only was a member of the NRA ? Steven Paddock and the shooter of Gabrielle Giffords happened to be registered Dems. If you go into crime ridden neighborhoods you will see that guns can be obtained no matter what the law is. During the Obama administration these bump stocks came to be legal. Unfortunately, criminals don’t care about laws;hence, the old axiom “If you outlaw guns, only outlaws will have guns. You can’t legislate evil or insanity. Now insanity, that’s another matter. When you consider that Louisiana has less than half the mental hospital beds that we had in 1980.


    • Stephen Winham says:

      As you (and we all) now know, the NRA has agreed the devices used by the Las Vegas shooter should be regulated. They have not gone so far as to suggest they should be banned outright, but at least it is a step in the right direction.

      I find your comments unresponsive to Bob Mann’s column and a simple repetition of what people who believe NO restrictions should be placed on guns have made for decades now, ad nauseum. Bob Mann is advocating common-sense things anybody should support and the “slippery slope” argument has no place here – though it seems to always be given the highest priority by gun rights advocates.


  3. Frank Campbell says:

    If you had worked in law enforcement or associated with criminal types, you would know first hand that no matter what the law is they’ll keep doing what they do. I’m telling you what I know first hand. What about mental health? I’ve worked in that field also, but to have less than half the state mental health beds than we had in 1980 , is a real laugher and leads to unstable people amongst us.


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