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The NRA would have you believe that the recent school shooting in Florida is all about Nikolas Cruz, the teenager with an assault rifle who killed 17 of his classmates. I think it is all about the NRA, which insists it should be legal for teenagers to own an assault rifle. The problem isn’t even with guns as much as it is with the NRA’s philosophy, which it has been spreading far and wide, poisoning people’s minds with a sick fantasy life.

The NRA’s philosophy is very simple: I've got a gun. That makes me the boss of you. Do as I say, or I kill you.

It's the philosophy of a narcissist. If you own a gun, you get to decide who lives or dies, and it's intoxicating, like meth. It makes you like God. Owning an assault rifle is a prop powering a fantasy life where you imagine yourself in complete control of others, able to define yourself as good, all good, casting into the shadow as “other” anyone who doesn't mirror back what you want to see in yourself. You decide who lives or dies. Selling this drug is what has made the NRA so powerful.

The NRA’s philosophy is creating a very sick society. The United States dwarfs the rest of the world with its incidence of shootings like the one that just happened in Florida. And it is all the NRA’s fault. I think it is past time we started calling out the NRA for being a cancer on the body politic. There is simply no reason a teenager needs to own an assault rifle.

Wade Sikorski