This week, yet again, Americans experienced the horror of a mass shooting when a military contractor walked into the Washington, D.C. Navy Yard and opened fire. But it didn’t end there. Gun shots wounded 13 including a 3-year-old boy in Cornell Square Park on the South Side of Chicago a mere three days later. Both of these incidents came just days after the shooting death of 24 year-old Jonathan Ferrell. Ferrell’s death is the latest example of an African-American man being presumed dangerous by authorities, and that false presumption leading to death. We have become far too familiar with this narrative. Combined with this week’s events in D.C. and Chicago, the issues of race, gun control, and mental health are again a part of our national conversation. On Saturday’s Melissa Harris-Perry, our host and panel will take a deep dive into the American problem of gun violence.
To shut down or not to shut down? That is once again the question. As we hurtle towards yet another fiscal cliff the threat of a government shutdown looms overhead. House Republicans insist on funding the government by defunding Obamacare. As Sen. Ted Cruz stated on Wednesday, House Republicans can vote how they see fit, but Senate Democrats are not going to vote to defund Obamacare. These comments run contrary to his previous rhetoric where he favored the passing of a spending bill that does just that. Curious as to what is going on with the GOP? We certainly are. On Saturday’s MHP, Melissa will discuss the GOP’s real intentions.
Obamacare exchanges officially open on October 1st but an NBC News /Wall Street Journal poll indicates that only 31% of Americans think that the policy is a good idea. Some are skeptical simply because they just don’t know how Obamacare will affect their lives. On Saturday’s show we’ll help correct some of the misinformation out there.
Annoyingly optimistic as they may be, a recent article puts forward the theory that Millennials are in fact shifting what it means to be a liberal and forcing politicians to follow suit. According to Peter Beinart’s article in The Daily Beast, Millennials are responsible for a “new new left.” His thesis hinges on the fact that a generation is defined by the political and economic climate a person experiences from age 18 to his or her mid-20’s. Unlike their Gen-X counterparts, Millennials don’t remember–or didn’t experience–Reagan and the Clinton years. Instead, the millennial experience is marked by a quivering economy, dim job prospects, waning government support, and the realization that they may never be as successful as their parents. Furthermore, it is a generation punctuated with a liberal-leaning social conscience on immigration, gay rights, and other areas of social inequality. Join us Saturday for a discussion on the staying power of the “new new left” and how Millennials will influence the candidates in the upcoming midterm elections and in 2016.