Marble Halls & Silver Screens w/Sarah Lee Ep. 4: The 'Ted Cruz & Alyssa Milano Square Off On Gun Violence' Edition

On this week’s episode of Marble Halls & Silver Screens, I try to tackle a subject that it’s fair to wager nearly everyone in the country — on both sides of the debate — has considered and perhaps even wavered on: the 2nd Amendment right to bear arms in the face of people who would abuse it and go on a shooting spree like the one that happened last week in Odessa-Midland, TX.

Actress Alyssa Milano, notable for using Twitter as a bit of a bludgeon and showing up to add to the madness that was the Kavanaugh hearing, has, to her credit, become a bit more self-aware of late and begun to ask questions that she thinks she knows the answer to (but at least she’s asking.) After the drive-by shooting that took place in Texas last week, she posed a question to the world in response to a a tweet sent by a Texas legislator which asserted owning a firearm is “God-given right”.

I tried to answer her in my small way:

But Senator Ted Cruz of Texas had the same idea and rather brilliantly explained in a thread just exactly where in the bible you could find justification for self-defense and how the Founding Fathers saw the right to self-defense as unalienable and codified it in the 2nd Amendment. People make the mistake that 2A is about guns. It’s not. While those who oppose it have tried to turn the idea of freedom into something hokey and backwards, it’s what people all over the world are interested in applying to their lives when they cross oceans to come here. And the 2nd Amendment gives them the freedom to defend their lives, their family’s lives, and everything they’ve built from anyone (including a tyrannical government).

Of course it’s terrible that people abuse their freedoms. Children do that, usually harmlessly, and require a lesson in why it’s a bad move. If they don’t receive those lessons, they grow into men and women who continue abusing those freedoms in more dramatic ways, sometimes with deadly consequences. But their abuse does not make freedom evil, nor does it mean those freedoms should be restricted.

Perhaps if Milano agrees to debate Cruz as she’s suggested above, he will make that case to her. There’s even a possibility she could come up with some ideas about how to identify people who may have evil intent to abuse those rights essential to liberty before they carry them out. Have Ted Cruz and Alyssa Milano struck the first blow in the vicious and divisive political debate and begun the process of moving things back to clear-headed idea sharing?

We shall see.

On the rest of the show, I review the truly excellent “The Last Black Man in San Francisco,” a gorgeous, semi-autobiographical film from a first-time filmmaker that deals with culture clashes, race differences, and gentrification in a troubled city. But mostly it deals with family legend and friendship and it’s beautiful.

Rounding out this week’s show is a discussion of the new Hollywood Blacklists, and the oddness of revisiting the Red Scare that ruined careers in Hollywood. Strange to see the progressive actors and actresses of Will & Grace calling for one.

Listen to the show in full on Spotify. You can also find me at Apple Podcasts and at Spreaker.