people were buying a little over a million guns a month in this country, adding to a total of just over three hundred million guns. And they aren't all being bought by teabaggers. In fact, the last I heard the fastest growing segment of gun buyers by political affiliation was Democrats. There are certainly a whole bunch of moderates and centrists who are gun owners. The political realities simply won't allow banning guns, banning semi automatic guns, assault weapons or anything of the sort. It ain't gonna happen. And any political party that proposes such will be handed a one way bus ticket to the political wilderness. Here's why:
If you put a thousand people in a room and told them that three of them would be assaulted, raped, robbed or murdered in a week, five hundred of them would go out and buy a gun tomorrow. A gun has tremendous symbolic power. It is a last line of defense against any threat, real or imagined. People take their personal safety and the safety of those close to them more seriously than anything, and concerns about close threats (like assault) however unlikely, loom much larger than remote threats (global warming/banking crisis) that are more likely to occur. That's just how people think.
Add to that the symbolic power of guns in politics. Guns symbolize everything that is bad to Democrats and good to Republicans. Liberalism is a nurturing ideology. It is defined by the support of others in cooperation to make society work. Conservative ideology is authoritarian in nature and depends on the concept of self reliance. Now 99.9% of the time, nurturing and cooperation are the best way to organize a society. But if you get assaulted, try nurturing your way out of that. It will be just you and him, and self reliance is the name of the game. That's where the other ideology works best. And that's why Republicans idolize guns the way they do. It is a totem to their ideology. It's also why Democrats hate them so much, because guns are an anti totem.
That's why every time a Democrat cooks up an unworkable firearm regulation, it's just giving strength to conservative ideology and pushing those in the center to the right. Whatever law gets passed has to make sense in the real world, and workable firearms laws have been few and far between lately. That's because firearms laws are about as good as we can make them. We can only support people so much, but sometimes they will be left to their own devices no matter what we do. No matter how well or tightly you build a support net, there will always be a few lunatics who will step right through it and hurt somebody. And when they do, there won't be anybody to help you but you.