In the aftermath of another horrific mass shooting, I have finally been convinced: Now is not the time to talk about gun control.
Likewise, now is not the time to talk about terrorism in New York, arrests in Saudi Arabia, Larry David’s holocaust joke, or yesterday’s NFL’s upsets. Just as many Democrats favor a three-day waiting period to purchase a gun, I favor a three-day waiting period to talk about anything in the news. Since there are mass shootings every day, this has many benefits. For example, not only do we never have to talk about gun control, we never have to talk about not talking about gun control. What a relief! (I hate that conversation.)
The problem with talking about something after it just happened is that in our eagerness to talk about the just-happened-thing, we discuss it. If there’s one thing that we can all agree on, it’s that we don’t need any more discussion, especially in the aftermath of something that has happened.
Do you discuss a meal after you’ve eaten it? Of course not. You give yourself time to thoroughly digest and eliminate it. And even then, you wait for the stench of defecation to clear before starting a possibly contentious debate about your subpar avocado toast appetizer. It is like that with mass shootings and gun control, except that the stench never clears. Consequently, we adapt to the toxically foul odor so effectively, we become completely unaware of it until our next bout of collective diarrhea. And even then, who wants to talk about or hear about diarrhea? I don’t know about you, but when a diarrhea commercial comes on, I immediately turn it off and don’t talk about it.
My point is that we can’t allow ourselves to go off half-cocked talking about things that just happened, not without politicizing them and thereby making things worse than if we hadn’t talked about them. Honestly, I fear that I am making things worse, much worse, by talking about not talking about them. So, in the interests of fostering a meaningful national dialogue, I would like to shift the conversation to not talking about not talking about not talking about things. You’re welcome.
Experts agree, the main issue is mental health. If only we were mentally healthy, that would make a world of difference, believe me. I would say more about this, but sorry, now is not the time to talk about mental health.
The question we must ask ourselves is: What is this the time to talk about? To properly answer this pressing question, I would have to check the news from three days ago in order to identify the stories reported that are not relevant today. Those irrelevant stories are without question ripe for exhaustive analysis and spirited debate. But sadly, in our rush to judgment, we prefer to focus on relevant things that just happened.
In closing, I would like to say nothing at all.
Joe Raiola is Senior Editor of MAD Magazine and Producer of the Annual John Lennon Tribute in NYC. He has performed his solo show, “The Joy of Censorship” in over 40 states.