Anger has long since turned to contempt. The “thoughts and prayers” are only reluctantly acknowledged, the thoughts and prayers that are intended to express sympathy, but above all testify to helplessness. Obituaries are written again, tears are shed. And everyone knows it will happen again.

Guns kill people. Many guns kill many people. This is so clear that it seems ridiculous to have to write it down. America records record numbers of gun purchases, murders and massacres. Soon, the Texas town of Uvalde will be another element in those stats.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, a Republican, called the crime, which killed 19 children and two adults, “incomprehensible.” It was he himself who made gun-carrying easier in his state. Texas Senator Ted Cruz, a Republican, warns against politicizing a massacre of this kind. Translated, this means: We have to come to terms with such acts so that the right to own a gun is not infringed upon.

That’s not conservative, it’s misanthropic. When it comes to abortion, the same politicians pretend to be “pro-life.” The weakest in society must be protected, they say. That should sound decent, virtuous, moral.

But the weakest in society also sit in school classes, have dreams, goals and life ahead of them. Unless someone comes along who has just turned 18 and can therefore legally buy two shotguns in Texas, with which he then goes on a manhunt. How stubborn do the gun rights fanatics have to be to be able to suppress such realities?

The same politicians who ostensibly want to protect the most vulnerable revolted against the mask requirement in the United States during the corona pandemic. “My body belongs to me,” wrote her followers on posters. In order to save some bizarre idea of ​​freedom, it was accepted that old and vulnerable people would become infected and die in intensive care units. After all, jobs must be secured and prosperity maintained.

On days like this, Republicans show what kind of spirit they are. They love the radical attitude, the harshness of the rhetoric, the ideological furor, the polarization. They have immunized themselves against insights and the persuasiveness of arguments. They don’t want to protect the weakest, they want to win culture wars. This is bigoted, obscene, reprehensible.

Donald Trump promoted this extremism, maybe just unleashed it. Few things illustrate the delusion of many Republicans better than the fact that the majority of them believe the big lie of a stolen presidential election. Against all evidence.

As luck would have it, the annual meeting of the well-organized American gun lobby NRA (National Rifle Association) begins this Thursday. 55,000 participants are expected at the “George R. Brown Convention Center” in Houston, Texas. Speakers include Trump, Abbott and Cruz. The organizers assured that there were no cancellations after the massacre in Uvalde. The program remains unchanged.