Opinion Las Vegas: Don't attack politicians for praying

21:41  05 october  2017
21:41  05 october  2017 Source:   USA TODAY SPORTS

Sports world reacts to Las Vegas shooting: ‘Thoughts and prayers’

  Sports world reacts to Las Vegas shooting: ‘Thoughts and prayers’ "Prayers up for the victims and their families in Las Vegas ."WHY is this horrible person allowed to have a gun? WHY. This has to stop. Why is it so easy for crazy people to have guns? I'm disgusted.

Politicians across the country are demanding action to curb gun violence after the largest mass shooting in modern American history left more than 50 dead at an outdoor country music concert in Las Vegas on Sunday night.

A terrorist attack by an American, privileged terrorist. With that said, the world is still reeling from the recent events in Las Vegas politicians : don ' t act like you care about mass shootings if you are anti-gun control.

Outside the Mandalay Bay resort in Las Vegas on Oct. 3, 2017 © Eugene Garcia, epa Outside the Mandalay Bay resort in Las Vegas on Oct. 3, 2017

Editor’s note: The opinions in this article are the author’s, as published by our content partner, and do not necessarily represent the views of MSN or Microsoft.

Sen. Chuck Grassley sent out a standard “prayers for victims” tweet after the Las Vegas shooting.

The response was swift — and brutal.

NYCNewbies tweeted: What is your prayer? "I pray the families of those killed don't realize just how complicit I am in the proliferation of mass shootings"?

Peter Jacobson added: Your prayers are not enough! There's no reason for US citizens to own weapons that can cause mass murder. It is insane to think otherwise.

'Please stop the violence!' - Soccer world reacts to Vegas shooting

  'Please stop the violence!' - Soccer world reacts to Vegas shooting Players from Major League Soccer and across the globe took time to share their thoughts and prayers following the worst mass shooting in U.S. historyThe shooter fired scores of bullets from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino down on the outdoor concert that was headlined by country music artist Jason Aldean.

Politics and Government. Clark County. Las Vegas . ‘It was a horror show’: Mass shooting leaves at least 58 dead, 515 wounded on Las Vegas Strip. October 2, 2017 - 6:12 amUpdated 1 hour ago.

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Christie Rosalie: .@ChuckGrassley instead of praying, stop accepting NRA $ and start changing gun laws.

Joseph Papryzcki:  Laws stop this, not prayers.  Do your job.

You get the idea. 

Grassley said Wednesday he hadn't seen the Twitter response but cited a Bible verse calling on prayers for all leaders: "First of all, then, I urge that entreaties and prayers, petitions and thanksgivings, be made on behalf of all men, for kings and all who are in authority, so that we may lead a tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and dignity." — 1 Timothy 2, 1-2.

"So you can't denounce anything that involves prayer with government or for people because that's our responsibility to do," Grassley said during his weekly conference call with Iowa reporters.

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  Eiffel Tower Goes Dark for Las Vegas and Marseille Eiffel Tower Lights Turned Off for Victims of Las Vegas and MarseilleThe Eiffel Tower went dark overnight to pay homage to the victims of two tragedies: the mass shooting in Las Vegas that left 59 people dead and more than 500 injured and the weekend knife attack in the French port city of Marseille.

Error 404: Page Not Found. Las Vegas Boardwalk Casino Scheduled For Tuesday Implosion.

Eyewitness Captures Footage of the Moment Vegas Shooter Opened Fi Politicians React to Las Vegas Terrorist Attack . I’m praying for all the victims, their families, and our first responders in the # LasVegas #MandalayBay shooting.

He also said this: "I take an oath to uphold the Constitution, not an oath to uphold the Bible. So I have to do what the Constitution says. And the Supreme Court's very clear about the right of individuals to have firearms."

I’ve been watching the backlash rise against the expression of thoughts and prayers for a while now, with more than a little unease. We’ve seen snarling responses to prayers offered for victims of hurricanes, floods and wildfires along the lines of “get off your knees and donate/volunteer/work to stop climate change.”

The assumption is that an offer of prayers is either just a meaningless platitude or it’s merely a hypocritical façade for someone who doesn’t really care enough to act. That attitude is a self-made trap and it will prove counterproductive to those who care about gun control and other progressive causes.

Grassley was noncommittal about the possibility of any sort of gun control legislation, and that makes me mad. I’m furious that 58 people were killed and more than 500  injured after the shooting in Las Vegas. I’m livid that this keeps happening and nothing is done to prevent the next time.

Eiffel Tower Goes Dark for Las Vegas and Marseille

  Eiffel Tower Goes Dark for Las Vegas and Marseille Eiffel Tower Lights Turned Off for Victims of Las Vegas and MarseilleThe Eiffel Tower went dark overnight to pay homage to the victims of two tragedies: the mass shooting in Las Vegas that left 59 people dead and more than 500 injured and the weekend knife attack in the French port city of Marseille.

He slammed Republican congressional leaders Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryan, saying it was good they sent prayers to Las Vegas but "they should be praying to God to forgive The host challenged politicians to find a solution ""To the people of Las Vegas , I cannot give you thoughts and prayers .

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More: Grassley and Ernst 'frustrated' with Republican leaders

I’m disgusted that the National Rifle Association and its allies have bribed and bamboozled so many elected officials into thinking the Second Amendment precludes restricting the tools of mass murder. I’m offended that our elected leaders, including President Trump and Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds, keep saying now is not the time to discuss gun regulations. If it’s up to them, that time will never come. 

But don’t tell me not to pray about it. Don’t tell Grassley not to pray, either.

Prayer, to me, is not a passive act. Time spent with God — expressing gratitude for his blessings, asking for help, or just quietly listening — is never wasted. I brought regular prayer back into my life just over a decade ago, and it has made an enormous difference. Prayer and God’s grace are helping me get through the recent tragedy of a young friend’s suicide. It’s giving me strength to help support his parents and to work for change in our state.

Prayer is action. It’s not an excuse for inaction. I believe if those who offer prayers actually talk to God instead of just tweeting, they may gain greater wisdom and strength to do what’s right, not just what’s politically expedient.

Las Vegas gunman's brother: He was highly intelligent

  Las Vegas gunman's brother: He was highly intelligent Eric Paddock spoke to reporters and described more about his brother's past and personalityEric Paddock, speaking outside his Orlando home, said he was having trouble processing "the horror story" after his brother, Stephen Paddock, opened fire on concertgoers in Las Vegas Sunday night, killing 58 people and injuring more than 500 people.

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I realize that many people who post “thoughts and prayers” on social media are really doing neither. I understand the impulse to call them out. Even so, we expect our public officials and neighbors to express concern for those who suffer and would fault them if they were silent.  Even shallow gestures can help attract the attention of people who will actually do something for those in need.

It’s foolhardy for those who feel strongly about gun control to convey the message that they are anti-prayer. That is not the intention, perhaps, but that is the perception that pro-gun advocates and politicians will seize upon. They’ll say, “Look, these people are attacking your religion. You can’t let them win.”

It’s exactly the same trap that people who care about racial injustice are falling into when they allow the other side to portray them as anti-flag and disrespectful of the national anthem. I choose justice for all and respecting the flag.

To those of you who agree with me that our country needs responsible gun control, I say, don’t put God on the other side by attacking prayer. We need all the help we can get.

Kathie Obradovich is The Des Moines Register's political columnist, where this piece first appeared. Follow her on Twitter: KObradovich

 

Panthers' Cam Newton sports 'Praying for Vegas' cleats during warmups .
Newton had also donned a "Rosie the Riveter" button on his hat while boarding the team's Saturday flight to Detroit.

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