The bronze likeness of Muammar Qaddafi’s nemesis was lying on his back in a wooden crate shrouded in the darkness of a museum warehouse. His name was Septimius Severus. Like Qaddafi, he was from what is now Libya, and for 18 years bridging the second and third centuries A.D. he ruled the Roman Empire.
Eleven days after the massacre, Wayne LaPierre – a lifelong political operative who had steadied the National Rifle Association through many crises – stood before an American flag and soberly addressed the nation about firearms and student safety: "We believe in absolutely gun-free, zero-tolerance, totally safe schools.
Connie Bruck has been a staff writer at The New Yorker since 1989. She writes about business and politics. Her piece “The Politics of Perception” won the National Magazine Award for Reporting. She has twice won the Front Page Award from the Newswomen’s Club of New York, for “Deal of the Year” and “Taking Down Tupac.”