The Myth of Second Amendment Exceptionalism

We make tradeoffs in personal liberties all the time. Why is gun control any different?

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Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images

Organized by the Second Amendment March group, about 500 pro-gun demonstrators rally near the Washington Monument April 19, 2010, in Washington, D.C.

It’s a familiar drill for millions of travelers: bare feet shuffling on a cold floor, belt off, emptied pockets, personal effects exposed for maximum humiliation. This surely constitutes an unreasonable search and seizure without probable cause, explicitly prohibited by the Fourth Amendment. Yet we cede this constitutional right to the executive authority that controls our borders millions of times every day.

When it comes to protecting freedom, Americans, including those on the Supreme Court, recognize that personal liberties must often be modified for the safety and protection of others. Yet today’s gun rights advocates routinely cite the Second Amendment of the constitution—the right to bear arms—when threatened by commonsense proposals to limit, but not eliminate, modern-day weaponry. Constitutionally protected freedoms are routinely curtailed in the name of public safety, morality, or even convenience. Our right to free speech is routinely regulated through obscenity laws. Slander, libel, pornography; we’re muzzled all the time. So, too, are our rights to assembly and religion compromised. You can’t stage a protest at noon in the middle of Times Square. A parent can’t deny a child lifesaving medical care or education.

(MORE: Viewpoint: If We Want Gun Control, We’ll Need to Compromise)

We’re also willing to cede our more prosaic rights — to drive at maniacal speeds, pollute our waterways, blow cigarette smoke in people’s faces, not wear seat belts or helmets, and on and on — because, mostly, we hold the sensible view that our right to freedom is tempered by someone else’s right to be free from our injurious, costly escapades. But while our current reverence for the Second Amendment seems to go back to the founding fathers, it’s actually evolved over time and reflects cultural norms honed over several decades by lobbying and public relations groups.

As reported in The Atlantic‘s “Secret History of Guns”, in the 1930s, the National Rifle Association’s president Karl Frederick believed the right to own guns was found “in an enlightened public sentiment and in intelligent legislative action. It is not to be found in the Constitution. In the 1960s, in the wake of race riots, Republican governor Ronald Reagan saw, “no reason why on the street today a citizen should be carrying loaded weapons.” As recently as 1991, former Chief Justice Warren Burger, a conservative Republican and strict judicial constructionist, said that the concept of a constitutionally-protected individual right to bear arms was “one of the biggest pieces of fraud—and I repeat the word fraud—on the American public by a special interest group that I have seen in my lifetime.” Less than twenty years later, in 2008, the work of those special interest groups was rewarded when the Supreme Court struck down Washington, D.C.’s gun control law.

Today, guns seem almost as American as apple pie. In my adopted state of Vermont, for example, a place widely held to be on the liberal fringe, hunters still have the right to use firearms on privately owned land without the property owner’s permission. Homeowners who don’t want strangers shooting in their backyards must register at the Town Hall, at their own expense and inconvenience, and post fliers on their land at regular intervals specifying that firearms are not permitted. We’ve imbued the Second Amendment with such disproportionate magnitude compared to other judicial protections that in 1982, a respected Senator, Orrin Hatch, could proclaim, apparently without irony, that the right to bear arms is the right “most valued by free men.”

(MORE: In the Shadow of Sandy Hook, a Powerful Pro-Gun Organization Stays Silent)

Like so many other rights, is possible to imagine curtailing this one without giving it up. The “slippery slope” argument against doing so is specious. Regulating the right to bear arms will not lead inexorably to its abandonment, just as raising the drinking age from 18 to 21 did not result in increased calls for prohibition. Instead, a tradeoff was made between the right of a 19- or 20-year-old to buy a bottle of vodka and the right of our society not to bear the costs of mayhem at the hands of a younger adolescent with a new driver’s license and an immature frontal lobe.

We make these compromises every day, and somehow the sky does not fall. But gun activists want an exemption from the cost of citizenry. Why should we pay such a high price for their freedoms if they wish to pay no price for ours? Last Friday in Connecticut, the bill came due, and it’s time for the NRA to pay.

MORE: How Guns Won

121 comments
whlanteigne
whlanteigne

There is a middle ground, but the discussion has become too polarized for sensible debate. The pro-gun lobby has relied on the Second Amendment, which states: "A well regulated militia* being necessary* to the security of a free State, the right of the People to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed."


The phrase "A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free State" is ambiguous at best. "Militia" isn't clearly defined except perhaps as a volunteer military force, acting in concert with regular government forces (presumably local and/or state forces, but could also be presumed to be aligned with national forces, as well). "Well regulated," in 18th century definition, can be interpreted to mean "well-equipped," but can also mean "disciplined" or "organized" or "competently led." There is bitter disagreement as to whether a volunteer military force is necessary to repel foreign invaders or hostile aboriginal indigents in the 21st century;  some self-annointed "militias" have regular meetings and exercises, "playing Army" as children did in my youth, but they have no official status as a volunteer military force that government forces would call upon in the event of a military crisis. The "well-regulated militia" phrase does not legitimize armed insurrection.


In 1875 the Supreme Court ruled "the right to bear arms is not granted by the Constitution; neither is it in any manner dependent upon that instrument for its existence. The Second Amendments means no more than that it shall not be infringed by Congress, and has no other effect than to restrict the powers of the National Government."


In 2008, the Supreme Court ruled that the Second Amendment "codified a pre-existing right" and that it "protects an individual right to possess a firearm unconnected with service in a militia, and to use that arm for traditionally lawful purposes, such as self-defense within the home" but also stated that "the right is not unlimited. It is not a right to keep and carry any weapon whatsoever in any manner whatsoever and for whatever purpose".


The key phrases are "the right is not unlimited," and that it "protects an individual right to possess a firearm ...for traditionally lawful purposes, such as self-defense within the home." Further, "It is not a right to keep and carry any weapon whatsoever in any manner..." 


I believe that means that some types of firearms that do not have a "traditionally lawful purpose" may be controlled or regulated or even banned for civilian use. It may also mean that magazine capacity can be limited to those normally used for "lawful purposes." I believe it also implies that the government has the right to check to see that firearms will not be used for unlawful purposes by conducting background checks.


It's disappointing that the background check legislation has stalled in the Senate.


However, I believe there is another approach that might actually be more effective, and avoid conflict with the 2nd Amendment right to "keep and bear arms." 


First, I believe it should be a Federal crime to commit any felony with firearms of any kind: a minimum sentence of five years for a first offense, the sentence doubling for repeated offenses (ten years for a second offense, twenty years for a third offense, forty years for a fourth offense; eighty years [effectively, life] for a fifth offense). 


Second, I propose enacting a federal law that requires proof of "financial responsibility" in the form of a "firearms liability insurance policy" presented at point-of-sale for the purchase of ammunition and/or ammunition making supplies, making it a Federal crime for anyone (including private citizens) to sell ammunition to an entity that does not have the required liability insurance (such liability insurance is already available to NRA members for a reasonable price, and may be offered by other entities as well; for example, a "personal liability" clause that covers the use of firearms in a homeowners insurance policy).


The law should stipulate that convicted felons and persons determined by a psychiatrist and/or a judge to be mentally incompetent to possess or use dangerous weapons shall be prohibited from acquiring said insurance, thus prohibited from purchasing ammunition or the means to make ammunition. The insurance provider would be authorized by law to make appropriate inquiries into the criminal and mental health histories of persons applying for said liability insurance.


Black powder and percussion caps may be exempt from the liability insurance requirement.


I think it should be at the discretion of the insurance company to terminate policies for policyholders who purchase ammunition or ammunition-making supplies and subsequently sell, or attempt to sell to entities that do not have said liability insurance, thus circumventing the law; and to determine what amount of ammunition is appropriate to buy on a monthly basis and to impose a limit on the quantity of ammunition the policyholder may purchase, to discourage policyholders from paying a month's premium and cancelling after stockpiling large amounts of ammunition. 


The policyholder would be protected from lawsuits arising from shooting incidents or accidents, as well as being protected from lawsuits arising from misuse of his weapons if they fall into the wrong hands. Insurance to cover loss or theft of firearms would not be required by this law but could be part of the same policy.


An exception to the firearms liability insurance requirement could be granted by the ATF if the purchaser agrees in writing to submit to a background check (for each purchase) to be completed by the ATF within a period of no less than seven days nor more than thirty days.  The application for exception should list the amount and type of ammunition requested and the intended use. Only one such exception should be granted per calendar month, and the ATF may impose a limit on the amount of ammunition purchased.


If sensible laws can't be passed, it may be time to repeal the Second Amendment.

RoccoJohnson
RoccoJohnson

The sad fact is that this debate has been waged for too long by extremists, on both sides. It's the common sense people whose message has largely been unheard. 

I'm a gun owner and I enjoy shooting, but I'm far from a gun freak. It makes sense to me that there is plenty of middle ground on this issue. Should assault weapons be banned, I believe the answer is yes, it makes perfect sense, and, in fact, they were banned until relatively recently. Should enhanced background checks be mandatory, absolutely. Should mental illness preclude one from owning a weapon, probably, depending on the nature and degree of the mental illness, and the person's prior history.

It is sad to me that reasonable people cannot sit down together and work for common ground legislation on this issue.


Leftcoastrocky
Leftcoastrocky

"one man's freedom ends where another's begins."

Leftcoastrocky
Leftcoastrocky

"Senator, Orrin Hatch, could proclaim, apparently without irony, that the right to bear arms is the right “most valued by free men.”

Hatch is dead wrong -- the right of free speech is the most valued.

jefnvk
jefnvk

Except all rights are curtailed on an airplane.  Try speaking the word bomb see what happens, and yes, second amendment rights are also restricted there.  It is an area we have set up as controlled, where one has no rights.  Your example would hold a lot more validity were everyone in public forced to undergo searches before leaving home.

You act as if there are no restrictions on firearms.  Our argument is they are already very much so restricted.

Would you support federal laws prohibiting the insult of the Prophet Mohammed, under the knowledge that such an action will cause death and destruction?

ghstwrtrx7
ghstwrtrx7

It's interesting that the vast majority of those who cry foul at commonsense gun control, citing government interference with their constitutional rights and civil liberties are the very same people who fully supported the implementation of the Patriot Acts.

PhilBurns
PhilBurns

It is pathetic beyond the point of humor that the author uses a fallacious revisionist attack from The Atlantic as the authoritative basis in an incredibly weak attempt to counter the authority and factual basis of the 200 page Senate Judicial Committee report which was researched for months by a 9 member subcommittee and carefully documented the historical basis for the meaning of the Second Amendment, not just in Colonial times but throughout the entire history of the United States.  Furthermore, their findings were completely validated and seconded by the Supreme Court in Heller.  

And the author supposes that it should be disregarded based on a hit-piece article by a biased publication.  Laughable.

The author's other ludicrous claim is that firearm owners refuse to allow any regulation of firearms, just like all the other enlightened people submit to regulations of their rights and primarily of their privileges (as if a privilege can be equated to a right).  The author insidiously fails to disclose or enumerate the extensive regulation to which firearms are already subjected both at a Federal level, a State level and a local level with over thousands of laws broadly across the US, 6 major pieces of Federal regulation and multiple SCOTUS rulings.  There are significantly MORE regulations for the Second Amendment than any other of the enumerated rights although it is the only one bearing the assertion that it shall not be infringed.  

Yet the author asserts that further regulation is necessary because THIS time, we're going to use so-called "Common Sense" which upon factual analysis is demonstrably false.  Common Sense approaches can be validated with facts while emotive, fear based, knee-jerk reactions (which the proposed firearm regulations of the last month are) cannot and are far from "Common Sense".  

There is no factual basis presented for any of the proposed additional regulations because there is none to support it.  The specious claim that further firearm regulation will "keep children safe" has such a mountain of evidence against it that proponents can only deal with it by completely ignoring it and using straw man and ad hominem attacks.  Meanwhile, the stated problem goes on un-addressed, assuring that it will occur again unabated.

It is difficult to find a shred of truth in this factually and emotionally manipulative literary mess.  I suppose we could settle on the publication date being accurate and call it substantiated.

D.a.Bailey
D.a.Bailey

I hate that you open an article trying to persuade people to accept more gun control by justifying illegal and unnecessary TSA searches. The TSA hasn't stopped any terrorist attacks and studies suggest that they now make crowded airports more likely targets of attack than the planes they're trying to protect. That's a huge fail.

lpsg435
lpsg435

In 1776 the Flintlock Musket was the AR-15 of it's age and everybody had one! Thank God for our well armed founding fathers!

grayfox9x
grayfox9x

The 2nd Amendment says :

"A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."

Why are individuals allowed to carry weapons ?  They should be allowed only within the local militia / guard / etc ..

OK, it is fine to have a single shot hunting rifle for those pesky coyotes and such, but nothing else ..

If I wrote something like this :

"Thin apple slices, being necessary to the composition of the baking, the pie must be put in the oven and baked at 350 degrees".

Would anybody think I talking about cherry pie ?


DevinBlagbrough
DevinBlagbrough

Pointing out other illegal invasions of my privacy and rights that I do NOT cede to the government, does NOT prove why you should be taking away more rights.   You don't offer anything valuable with your offerings here, just more nonsense and jiberish that attempts to confuse the issue - clear headed thinking people can see right through this foolishness.  

AngieAltmann
AngieAltmann

Passengers have a Second Amendment right to carry guns on airplanes in order to protect themselves, don't they?

What? They don't?

Never mind...

Hadrewsky
Hadrewsky

Religion can still be invoked for the suffering of others... Note the Amish forcing their children into an incomplete education to preserve their Theocracy of living in the 18th century... 

Some cry this should not be stopped for sake of 'cultural diversity  but they do not pay for this diversity... Children indoctrinated into faith's absurdity pay for it.

newsmama
newsmama

I'm technically from the "other side". Every time I travel and am "frisked" by the TSA, I think this is nuts. Only certain groups will bomb planes. Why treat all of use like criminals? I've never seen a gun flying through the air, jjust shooting people. There is usually someone holding it. There were always boundaries with many things, including so-called "free speech". Free speech was intended to complain against the government without fear of repurcussion, not exploit children. I'm very happy for all the liberals who feel they are on some moral high road. But you are falling off. The school was a "no gun" zone. Even    if you ban all guns. the only ones who will give them up are those who abide by the law. The bad people will always have guns. Or homemade bombs, or drive their SUVs into groups of people standing ont he corner. You can't legislate away evil. We all have that ppotential. Your liberal viewpoint will not harness but unleash it because you have extremely skewed viewpoints and extremely flawed thought processes. 

dontn123
dontn123

"On December 17, 2012, Senator Feinstein announced the key provisions of the bill she intends to introduce. The proposed legislation will ban the sale, transfer, importation and manufacturing of over 100 specific firearms. Also banned will be certain named semiautomatic rifles, handguns and shotguns that can use a detachable magazine, as well as fixed magazines that can hold more than 10 rounds.

The sale, transfer, importation and manufacturing of other ammunition feeding devices that can accept more than 10 rounds will also be banned."

http://www.decodedscience.com/new-assault-weapons-ban-no-gun-seizure/22871

You better read it and read it well for more then 100 different guns Many Many Many More then just AR15.....it is hand guns, shot guns, and rifles, so on.... Wake Up

147greenmullet
147greenmullet


Dear Ms. Christakis,

I appreciated reading your article posted on Time Ideas on December 18. I agree with your stance that citizens and residents should compromise their right to have guns to protect everyone's safety. Gun regulations should be more strict in our country because, as shown in Connecticut, we are living in a potentially unsafe land.
I agree that putting more restrictions on who can get a gun and where they should be used and kept will not necessarily lead to the banning of firearms in our nation. The “slippery slope argument” you mention is a bit of an exaggeration, and I, along with many others, feel that guns should be allowed in safe, private environments and should not leave those places.
I also agree that the laws in Vermont are disproportionate. Homeowners should never involuntarily have dangerous weapons being used on their property. This could also propose several dangers to those homeowners with pets, children, and others running around unaware of the firearms present. I feel that this constitutional right is being taken for granted, and restrictions should be added to the social contract that Americans make with their government.
I found it very interesting that you began your article with a description of the compromise we make with airport security. This was very effective because it placed a new perspective on the gun issue that many people may have not considered, that the two are more or less the same. I also found it somewhat ironic. I've noticed that many pro-gun advocates are also quick to go against terrorism and completely support the searches without cause at airports. I feel everyone involved with freedom in America should make compromises to “insure domestic tranquility.”
Thank you for writing an article that helped reinforce my opinion and learn about others' opinions.

Katya Mullet
Sophomore,
Worthington Kilbourne High School
Columbus, OH 43235

timmyjonce
timmyjonce

In my opinion the main threat and form of oppression comes now from our corporate run media. Millions of Americans turn on the news and watch blatantly skewed information.. Our pop culture generates movies, music, TV and Video games that promote unkind behavior.  Look back in time to our parents time and their time, before all of this TV, pop culture violence.  People had far more freedom and liberties and acted more civil and polite to one another, they had respect, dignity and morals.  There has always been some gun control, primarily in the larger towns and cities where there was law and order.  If you lived someplace where there was no law and order or limited, You had to provide you're own security as such. This holds true today, there are some cities in our country that have a high crime rate due less in part from to many guns but more of a social issues, hunger, poverty, economics, drug addiction. You should provide for your own security if the public officials are unable. Our constitution is a charter of "negative rights" it was written to limit the rights of the Government over the people. Our founding Fathers saw a distinct difference  between a government "Of the people, by the people and for the people" as opposed to the kingdoms from which they fled where they had been considered "disloyal subjects" and marked for death.

The constitution is a sacred document, this last few years we have heard a lot of rhetoric about the oppression caused by the wealthy and when is too much money enough  right?  The 1% issue.. can we not apply the same philosophy to our Government?  The deregulation of Wall street that caused our economic down turn, then flip it and look at it as the deregulation of our constitution.. The moral corruption of our society that now needs to be regulated based on the 1%'s use of the 1st amendments right of free speech to produce irresponsible  pop culture for the sole purpose of making money. 

When something bad happens, the 1% runs and hides while their puppets point fingers everywhere, posting blame. The media, who has been reporting  gory crime's every minute detail, while following car chases on live TV getting rich of the miscues of society now jump onto the "feel good" bandwagon promoting laws to limit the peoples rights. Misdirecting millions of people away from the real issues.

So when the corporate media and the Government press you for gun control, remember that for the 1%   are greedy for more money and more power . Consider these Historical facts from the 20th century, feel free to Google them. 

 In 1929, the Soviet Union established gun control. >From 1929 to 1953, about 20 million dissidents, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated
In 1911, Turkey established gun control. From 1915 to 1917, 1.5 million Armenians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.
Germany established gun control in 1938 and from 1939 to 1945, a total of 13 million Jews and others who were unable to defend themselves were rounded up and exterminated.
China established gun control in 1935. From 1948 to 1952, 20 million political dissidents, unable to defend themselves were rounded up and exterminated
Guatemala established gun control in 1964. From 1964 to 1981, 100,000 Mayan Indians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.
Uganda established gun control in 1970. From 1971 to 1979, 300,000 Christians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.
Cambodia established gun control in 1956. From 1975 to 1977, one million educated people, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and exterminated.
Defenseless people rounded up and exterminated in the 20th Century because of gun control: 56 million.
You won't see this data on the US evening news, or hear politicians disseminating this information.

With guns, we are 'citizens'. Without them, we are 'subjects'.

People will say, That could never happen here, or they will say that those people didn't stand a chance with regular guns against the military grade weapons .. on the first statement - FASE . The second one TRUE. But after the civil war our lawmakers worried about our military becoming politicized enacted Posse Comitatus. This act prohibits the use of our military to enforce laws on our native soil with the exception of the National Guard and the Coast Guard, during times of national emergency . So this would leave any corrupt corporations and politicians the daunting task of corrupting hundreds of thousands of police officers and then turn them loose onto a society of 300 million of which 100 million have some form of firearm no matter how antique.  It would be like you're local swat team trying to invade china ..

Whew right? The miltary can't enforce our laws and we will never have to fight them to restore our rights. "False" Due to a 1%er  GW Bush we now have the patriot act that eviscerated  Posse Comitatus.  it gets worse tho.   November 29th 2011, the Senate voted on a bill that allows the US military to imprison civilians with no formal charges and hold them indefinitely with no trial.  The Levin-McCain National Defense Act

What it means: It's shocking to learn that the majority of representatives and senators have replaced our civil liberties with a de facto military dictatorship while no one is watching. How is the Levin-McCain provision different from Patriot Act laws? If an American citizen is seen as a threat to the government, that citizen will be denied his/her constitutional rights of protection,  "The provision would give the President the power to use the military to intern anyone - including American citizens - indefinitely, and hold them without charges or trial, anywhere in the world, including on American soil. The provision repeals the longstanding Posse Comitatus Act, which prevents the military from engaging in law enforcement on US territory - the greatest fear of the Founders."


We are one bad, power hungry politician away from suffering the fate of millions 

LabOn64
LabOn64

Let me get this straight.  The main arguments that guns should not be regulated are:

1) Potential oppression by government.

2) More rights is always better.

3) The constitution is some kind of sacred document.

4) Bad guys will still be able to get guns so the common person should be at least as well armed (self defense).

5) Financial costs of such regulations.

6) Guns are fun (for sport, collecting, etc.).

If I am missing any major logical points, feel free to respond.  I am open to hearing good, well-reasoned points as to why further regulations are a bad idea.  I think the article dealt quite well with argument 2 and to some extent argument 3.  Argument 5 is a matter of application.  Argument 1 is interesting but unconvincing since if the USA wanted to oppress us, no amount of small arms will prevent it from doing that. Many minorities (illegal immigrants, poor communities, gays) currently feel (and are) oppressed by our government and the most effective groups at overcoming this oppression (eg. gays and lesbians) have done so non-violently while the ones who use guns (eg. many poor black communities) only see further oppression in the form of half the male youth going to jail.  Argument 4 is reasonable for some situations such as those who live in rural areas.  Still, a proper licensing law should have minimal impact on such a situation.  Finally, argument 6 is one that cannot be refuted other than to say that the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few.  However, I would be the first to point out that this is not a proper argument against it because it does not directly refute or counter the argument, only redirects it to a separate topic.  I would have to agree that bigger guns are more fun and regulation will cut down on the ability to enjoy this American pastime.  All I can do is ask for your help.  Will you give up your current right to some aspects of this enjoyment for the hope of a brighter future for all of our children?  

RobertMiller2
RobertMiller2

@whlanteigne"If sensible laws can't be passed, it may be time to repeal the Second Amendment"


It is words like these that start wars, and if our government were to ever speak and act upon them, our civil society would be at its end.

ChristopherJ.Joubert
ChristopherJ.Joubert

@RoccoJohnsonI love how everyone trying to pitch themselves as as a moderate on the issue claims to be a gun owner then says , yes these should be banned. Let me ask you a series of simple questions:


1: Are you aware that 'assault weapon' was a term developed in 1988 to describe a certain class of weapons based solely on cosmetic features, and not on any function and was intentionally coined to confuse the term with 'assault rifle' which has a series of specific features, most notably a 'selective fire' option which none of the 'assault weapons' on the ban list have?

2: Are you aware that the AR-15 rifle was invented in 1956 by Armalite, and marketed for hunters? And that the features of the weapon were so effective for hunters that in 1961 after Colt bought the rights to it, the military took an interest, and that colt created the M-16 and launched its own AR-15 Sporter in the same year, 1963, with the Sporter hitting the market before the first units of the military even had any training with the new weapon? 


3: Are you aware that until 1986 fully automatic weapons were available to be owned by anyone, and were seldom used in any criminal endeavor? 

4: Do you really think the 2nd Amendment was intended to protect 'hunting weapons'? Let me put that in modern context for you, the modern version would be 'The right of the people to shop at a grocery store, shall not be infringed.' Seems rather, silly doesn't it?

5: Have you read any of the founding documents of this nation at all, beyond the Constitution? In the Declaration of Independence, one of the grievances against the crown was the attempt to make the military more powerful than the people. (#12 IIRC) And the founders of the nation intended the people to be armed in parity to the military to provide the final in a series of checks and balances, this information can be found in The Federalist Papers, as well as in the Constitutional Debates. In addition to this at the time many people owned cannon, the numbers are hard to come by but in some areas as many as 1/3 of the land owners had cannon as part of their standard arsenal. 

6: After what happened in NY and a second location (LA iirc?) some of the requests, like registration, are now shown to have the exact effect the NRA, and other Pro-Gun groups claim, does it make sense that any gun owner should feel safe with this type of legislation?

First, I agree some regulation is necessary. However a ban on any weapon that is a bearable is morally, and constitutionally wrong. As to the argument that 'what about tanks, nukes etc...' the constitution clearly states that the Right of the People is to Bearable arms only, though you may not be aware that you can in-fact import fully functional tanks, the military ones that are sold to the public are de-militarized by our own military as standard procedure, but there is no law actually requiring it. 

Regulation is one thing, bans are another. The problem here is that your side, and sir I doubt highly that you actually are a gun owner as even the most liberal gun owning friends I have all stand against a ban of any type and these are hard core Obama supporters on every other issue, have no place where they will draw the line and say, 'this is what we want and no more'. 

'Assault Weapons' were responsible for a handful of deaths, so few in fact that bare fists actually kill more people every year than these rifles that you propose banning ever do.

Criminal and mental illness background checks, make sense.

Licenses as long as the list is not made public via FOIA, are ok, but as we have seen can be used in terrible ways.

A registry is once again pushing questionable territory, especially when you have politicians blatantly saying they would like nothing less than confiscation. 

Microimprinting makes some sense, especially in combination with a registry. 

Bans on the other hand make no sense, nor do they serve any purpose but as an in-road to total disarmament. 

As to the author of this article, there are those of us who are appalled that anyone puts up with this type of intrusion, and many of us who refuse it, see the unwarranted search and seizure clause does still apply everywhere in the US, and many of us use it to avoid the same trouble you have to put up with. No person is made safer by these intrusions, not one, and the idea that it makes people 'feel' safer is no reason to undertake it. Many of us, and I would even say most of us, prefer our liberty over the type of safety that you and your ilk are trying to pitch. I won't get into it too deep, but my father-in-law left the Soviet Union in the 1970's and he is frightened for what he sees happening. 

To the sheeple that read this post and don't understand: Look up the following and learn what you are giving up.
The history of Gun Control in the US.
Castle Rock v. Gonzales (2005)
Bowers v. Devito (1982)
South v. Maryland (1856)
The Petit Case from CT (2010)

The fact is that the only person who can protect you is you.

'The Myth of Center of Mass' Jim Higgenbotham (A case study in gun fights)


RobertMiller2
RobertMiller2

@grayfox9xI would think you are talking about one best practice on how to bake an apple pie. By using thin slices, the pie is more likely to lay evenly and thereby bake more uniformly.

Assuming that the principle of 'thin apple slices' only applies to baking apple pies is the fallacy. In fact, there are many other types of pies that uniform slices and baking at 350 degrees is applicable. Let's look at your cherry pie example, we already know that they are inherently small enough to fit in a pie and thereby would be expected to bake uniformly. So we are able to apply the best practice to the cherry pie.

Although the thin apple slices (a well regulated militia), speaks directly to the necessary composition of baking (being necessary to  the security of a free State), the pie must be put in the oven and baked (the right of the people to keep and bear arms), at the temperature of 350 degrees (shall not be infringed).

The inherent truths also applies to the cherry pie (self-defense), rhubarb pie (hunting), pecan pie (plinking), etc.


Yes, in case you are wondering, I just successfully turned a pie reference against a broader interpretation of the Second Amendment, into a pretzel, which also can be cooked at 350 degrees.

DeweySayenoff
DeweySayenoff

@DevinBlagbrough Ah, but you HAVE ceded those rights.  If you want to fly with the public, you have to go through the security.  If you want to speed, they'll pull you over and, if you keep doing it, take both your vehicle and your license to operate one away.  If you want to libel, slander or abuse people with speech, you can be legally silenced by fining or imprisoning you.

But if you want to leave your fully-loaded firearm laying out in the street, you're not held criminally liable for any mayhem that act may cause.  You aren't held criminally liable for not locking up your weapons that get stolen or used by someone else.  A gun is a tool whose intended purpose is to kill.  There is no other reason for its existence.  Yet, you're not required to pass a mental health or physical minimum standard to own one.  Even drivers can be made to not drive if they can't see the damn road, but a BLIND PERSON CAN OWN, AND USE, A FIREARM.

I don't care how deep the sand is in which you want to bury your head.  Your dismissive remarks indicate a complete lack of reason, the ability to think rationally and critically and an utter inability to face the truth.

That truth is we live in a democracy.  And regardless of what you think, believe, want or need, if the majority votes it away from you - YOU CAN'T HAVE IT ANYMORE.

Enjoy the taste of sand.

anzablazer
anzablazer

@Hadrewsky Why stop there. I would say there are at least a 100 or more different religious Theocracy in the world.

DeweySayenoff
DeweySayenoff

@newsmama Well, here's the thing.  Your point of view is pathetically simple-minded.  I know complex arguments and situations boggle the typical rightie's mind, but try to bear with me as I detangle it for you.

To begin with, the point of gun control isn't to ban ALL guns.  Nor is it to stop ALL gun violence.   Neither one of these things can be done, so we'll actually proceed from a point of realism instead of black and white simplistic thinking.

Now, the sad fact is, in a society where gun ownership is a right, almost every gun used in a criminal act was originally purchased legally.  It may have subsequently been obtained illegally from a legal owner, but that's beside the point because guns used in crimes don't constitute the majority of firearms related deaths and injuries.  Suicide and stupidity do.  And the majority of guns used in crimes whether involved in mass shootings or not (defined here as two or more people) were both purchased legally and wielded by the owner or a family member.

But guns, specifically, aren't the problem when it comes to stemming the tide of mass shootings.  That IS the goal, after all.

The problem is that modern weapons have an extremely high rate of fire and are too easy to use.

Now, the idea of using a firearm for personal protection is also looked at from a typically simple-minded, idealized point of view.  The fact is, if you're being held at gunpoint, going for your piece will get you shot and killed.  If they have a knife, you may get cut, but you may also actually get the gun out.  Whether you actually manage to shoot your assailant (and the bullet doesn't go through them to hit someone else) is problematic, but a person with a knife at a knife-range is more deadly than a person with a gun at knife-range because a knife is a two dimensional weapon while a gun is a one dimensional weapon.  This is the reality of life.  If that bursts any delusional bubbles, so be it.  You MAY get them, but they will also get you.  You're better off with body armor and a few lessons in self defense. 

 But let's say you get that gun out and start blasting away.  How many shots will hit them?  Need I remind you that in some southern state a few years back, two state troopers (who allegedly both know how to use guns and were trained in dealing with tense situations) got into a firefight with two good old boys at point blank range, fired off more than a dozen rounds between them all and no one got a damn scratch.  So much for the myth of personal protection.

But let's say you still need a pacifier to suck on while you move through a paranoid world of danger and demand a firearm to protect you from all the liberals out there.  

Use a muzzle-loader. 

 It will kill someone wielding an assault weapon - no problem.  And if you only HAVE one shot, you make it count, or learn how to.  You don't get to "spray and pray", which makes gunfights at the Back Alley much less likely to kill innocent bystanders.  Accidents are a hell of a lot harder when the "bullets" are broken into three pieces and are all needed together to work.  You still get to target shoot, trap shoot and hunt with them.  You can protect your home with them just as well as with an Uzi, but with a greatly diminished chance of accidents, theft or use in another heinous crime.  

Can you imagine a drive-by shooting with a muzzle-loader?

So, outlaw all non-muzzle-loaders.  Put out a reward for turning in people who have them. But let anyone open carry a muzzle loader.  There's no rational, legal and responsible reason to have ANYTHING else.  It only takes one shot to kill a person, and if you only have one, you do learn to make that one count.  So even if someone comes out spraying with an assault weapon, there will be people who will aim very carefully to hit whoever was shooting instead of just firing blindly away in their general direction and hoping they get lucky like those cops did.  The nature of the weapon MAKES THEM aim, or they'll just give away their position and get killed.  In my book, that's one less gun-toting idiot on the streets, but I digress...

This isn't legislating away evil.  It's facing a reality that morons will still want guns, still get guns and still use guns.  But if we make the rate of fire those guns can do much lower than they are now, we'll meet the goal of reducing the rate of slaughter by firearms in this country without taking away "firearms" from those who just HAVE to have one.  We can't maintain an "arms race" with the bad guys because those "bad guys" are US - responsible gun owners who aren't actually so responsible, not responsible enough or are so into their guns, they'll use them regardless of the law.

One shot, one kill.  That's all it takes.  A muzzle loader encourages that kind of approach to firearms.  And from a rational, logical, critical point of view, if you shoot fewer bullets, you'll hurt fewer people.

And that's the whole point of gun control in the first place.

AngieAltmann
AngieAltmann

@newsmama "Only certain groups will bomb planes."Every time I travel and am "frisked" by the TSA, I think this is nuts. Only certain groups will bomb planes. Why treat all of use like criminals?"

So which groups would you exempt from searches and allow to carry guns on planes? Allow me to make a wild guess: Muslims? No? African-Americans? Unlikely. Latinos? Probably not.

White people, maybe? Sure, now you're talking!

elchristakis
elchristakis

@147greenmullet Thank you very much for this thoughtful feedback (and I am sorry for the delay in responding; I haven't had a chance to read some of these comments until now). Like you, I've also noticed the irony of many gun activists having no problem proposing intrusive searches of the person/property of "others" when acts of potential terrorism are concerned. I guess it depends on how people define "terrorism!" Keep reading and writing and -above all - thinking critically!  I always enjoy reading a lot of opinions from a range of perspectives, even if they challenge or offend me,  because it helps me to better clarify (and sometimes alter) my own views. Thanks again for your comment on my piece. Best wishes, Erika

Leftonomous
Leftonomous

@timmyjonce Those are some horrifying statistics, but they are bound to be repeated as long as they are ignored. People may say the slipper slope argument is bull, but I see it like this. Say they limit assault weapons and extended mags after this tragedy. When a deranged person goes on a shooting spree after this legislation, what will they ban next? I still can't believe the op ed author is so naive to say, "Well, you already let the government infringe on so many of your rights, why not let them trample this one, too?"

JohnBrhel
JohnBrhel

In 2000, if you had combined the populations of Great Britain, France, Germany, Japan, Sweden, Denmark and Australia, you would have had roughly the same population as the US. In 2000 the US had 32000 gun deaths. The other seven nations combined had 112. Do you think it's because Americans are more homicidal by nature? Or do you think it's because those guys have gun control laws?!? Feel free to share with me the number of people in those nations that were rounded up and exterminated in the last decade because they couldn't defend themselves. People like you make me weep for the human race.

rcountry
rcountry

@timmyjonce  

You are one of the few actually think before you speak.  I've researched and found the same facts you did.  There are now declassified documents on line, hundreds of them,  giving evidence Bush and friends were repeatedly warned about 9/11. Bush claimed bin Laden wasn't a threat at all. HUH? In October of 2,000,  2 'volunteers' paddle their little boat, full of explosives right up to the USS Cole and killed 17 sailors, injuring 29 more.  He claimed Saddam Hussein was dangerous.  9/11 was his justification for the Patriot Act.  He lied to us and Congress, about WMD's in Iraq.  It was total crap. Globally, he's a war criminal and under international law, he can be tried. Rumsfeld was..and found guilty.

dontn123
dontn123

@timmyjonce Great post but most from the other side won't read it.  They believe what the GOVT and News Media tells them.  They are sleeping right through current events with their blinders pulled tighter then ever.

RobertMiller2
RobertMiller2

@LabOn64  

In light of the recent scandals and the outright attack on whistle blowers and news agencies. Do you still hold the same position that number one is unconvincing? The reason the government can't oppress us is because there are over 300,000 guns in the hands of civilians in the united States. The government knows full well that it has a finite level of true supporters and that is why there is a push to disarm veterans. If everyone is disarmed, then you will rue the day you nonchalantly dismissed the reasons to not regulate firearms. And posterity will will curse the very ground you stand upon once the full implications of the fear or fraud being used to remove our right to bear arms is realized.

seek_truth_
seek_truth_

@LabOn64 Our Rights to defend ourselves and our Families are not for you to take.  

What part of "Shall Not Be Infringed" do you not understand?

timmyjonce
timmyjonce

@LabOn64  after I got out of the Army, I went to Alaska and fished and hacked a life out of the wilderness, some of my army buddy's reenlisted and some went to Bosnia, one in particular who I was very close to Ira, who eventually took his own life. he used heroin to do it.. in the little time that i had with him and when he was sober he told me scary stories  .. he would tell me that soldiers would use school children to clear mine fields.. they would force children to run back and forth over a field . Survivors where then shot. He told me that they would load people (men, women, children) into trucks, then riddle them with bullets because they where to lazy and did not want to load the bodies back into the truck.  what method would you propose to use to overcome this type of oppression? violent or non violent..

dontn123
dontn123

@LabOn64 It all started when Cain killed Able...and if you don't understand that then the rest is pointless.

How many families and kids were killed in the American Revolution?  Why did the Founding Fathers use GOD in many forms of the Govt when it was first established?  Why is GOD talked about so much after things such as that murder spree which was a gun free zone?   Guns were Banned at the school so why didn't it work for that invisible shield of protection?  God has those children now and no one will ever be able to harm them again.


hackjar
hackjar

"That truth is we live in a democracy.  And regardless of what you think, believe, want or need, if the majority votes it away from you - YOU CAN'T HAVE IT ANYMORE."

Um, no. It doesn't work that way. We live in a Federal Republic governed by the US Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Majority opinion does not rule. If 51% of US citizens want to re-instate slavery, outlaw free speech, or ban guns can they do it? No.  Thank god our founding fathers had the wisdom and foresight so few have today.

DevinBlagbrough
DevinBlagbrough

@DeweySayenoff @DevinBlagbrough NO, you don't know me and don't pretend you do.  I don't fly anymore - I have ceded no rights there.

Yes, a blind person can own and use a firearm - and I'll defend their rights to do so until they prove they shouldn't - I personally have brought my blind friend out to one of my fields, loaded a firearm and handed it to him responsibly.  He then fired it, responsibly - and if you want to take that from him, come and see me first but don't expect to be allowed to leave if this is your position and you are intent on stopping him or me.

As for firearms having no other intended purpose - well I don't know how deep YOU bury your head in the sand but this is plainly false.  Wipe the sand from your eyes and perhaps you will learn of the olympic and other competitive shooting events as well as non-competitive recreational shooting.   You are the one who cannot see my friend - not my blind friend, that is clear to any thinking individual who is reading this.

As for the ability to vote away my right - go ahead and try, and then go ahead and try to enforce it.... for me, the latter will be the fun part.   You cannot legally repeal the Bill of Rights and if you try you will face great adversity which you will not overcome - if you believe you will, you must love the flavor of sand, or is that a litter box you have stuck your head in?

DevinBlagbrough
DevinBlagbrough

@AngieAltmann @newsmama No, not after Timothy McVeigh (sp?) - most certainly do NOT exempt white males such as myself.    Rather lets just exempt humans and understand that not everyone has agreed to cede these rights.

RobertMiller2
RobertMiller2

@elchristakis @147greenmullet  

People are beginning to grow tired of the groping and prodding from TSA and the ever expanding police state. Sometimes people can be duped into something without knowing the full cost of allowing something to happen. The Patriot Act is that something and giving up more rights because people have been duped earlier is akin to throwing out the baby with the bath water. This isn't an all in proposition, this is about restoring the rights that the Patriot Act took away and securing our freedom for future generations.

Katya, I hope you rethink your position, because what happens today will have a greater affect on you than many of those who are standing to protect the Second Amendment now.

The word terrorism is one of the favored in the arsenal of the tyrant. If protect the Constitution and our natural rights makes me a terrorist, then so be it. Our founders were considered terrorists and it served them well in standing up to the tyrants.

DevinBlagbrough
DevinBlagbrough

@JohnBrhel Those are not randomly chosen countries... statistics are nice when you get to chose the source of the statistics.

timmyjonce
timmyjonce

@dontn123 @timmyjonce  well they will learn the hard way that even tho they have thrown down their weapons and surrendered they will still be killed 

Galen
Galen

@timmyjonce @LabOn64 

Controlled non-violence.Guns are for fear-mongering sissies, just like these killers, who you help to keep armed.

With all your gun rhetoric here, you have blood on your hands for these mass killings!

wrathbrow
wrathbrow

To your question as to why did the founding fathers use GOD in many forms: same reason that previous people worshiped the sun god.

These children are not with 'god' now, they are dead. If there was a loving god he would of stopped the children from being killed, did not happen. That's not a comforting thing, just the real thing.

I find it horrible that people promote a god that is all powerful and does not stop something like this from happening an then suggest others should worship said make believe idea.

Galen
Galen

@dontn123 @LabOn64 

They didn't use god, you do.

Your understanding of Cain/Able is what is pointless, and so is your god!

Guns kill. much like your narrow christain rhetoric.

whlanteigne
whlanteigne

@hackjar Actually, it kinda does work that way, although it takes a supermajority of 2/3 of Congress, or 2/3 of the  states can have an Article V convention to propose an amendment, or to repeal an amendment. It takes a supermajority of 3/4 of the states to ratify. 

That's 34 states to propose, 38 states to ratify.

It may not be possible to get 2/3 of Congress to agree, but it's not impossible to get 34 state governments who are fed up with gun crime to agree that something needs to be changed.

PamRiggsby
PamRiggsby

@DeweySayenoff @DevinBlagbrough i just want to say that that was very well done..bravo..really..not being sarcastic...i agree with absolutely everything you said and in fact have said the same myself..i have a friend whose answer to why he needs those kinds of weapons was "in case the govt tries and takes my guns" and i laughed at him and told him how ridiculous the idea was that his semi automatic weapon would be any kind of match for what our brave men in uniform have lol...when my gun friends are faced with any question or thought about guns being regulated their first response is always ..because the 2nd amendment says so...to me it is like when we were nine and had something bad and were questioned and our answer was " because my mommy said i can have it."  if they would just respond with things like i feel safer with it or because i have much better aim with it or something along that line, in a rational way without threatening, i think people would be more likely to listen..most people, on both sides of the argument, are not willing to look beyond the end of their noses and see the big picture...that something has to be done..like enforcing the laws we already have or stricter penalties for criminals who use guns in the process of their crimes etc. but i really just wanted to say it was refreshing to see someone address the issue in a well informed and clear way...ty  you just restored some of my faith people :)

DevinBlagbrough
DevinBlagbrough

@DeweySayenoff @DevinBlagbrough As for letting the blind shoot in an empty field with a responsible person - NO YOU ARE WRONG... but please, go on to tell us more about things you know nothing about....  oh, I see you did several more paragraphs of that already...

DeweySayenoff
DeweySayenoff

@DevinBlagbrough@DeweySayenoff <laughs at you>

So, you don't drive?  You let people blow smoke in your face?  You've ceded more rights than you know if you live as a normal American.  If you want to cherry-pick specifics when they're used as a whole as an example, great, knock yourself out.  It only makes you look more irrational.

As for letting the blind shoot, that's utterly irresponsible regardless of how you did it, but it's not ILLEGAL, which highlighted my point about how absurd your reverence for the second amendment is.

As for my voting away your right to be a gun owner, that's not even on the table here (and your paranoia is showing to assume that it ever was).  But I would vote in favor of what KIND of guns you can own as is my constitutional right.  And if a majority voted with me, you would either accept it or become a criminal - at which point society can then legally deal with you howsoever you decide to let them.

I LOVE the way you threatened me, by the way.  Typical gun owner mentality.  If you disagree, kill them!

Here's a news flash, Sparky...  I own guns. They're disassembled and locked away.  I have something ELSE much better for personal protection. But I'm damn good with guns at any range.  Like Tom Selleck's character in Quigly Down Under said about the pistol at the end when he won a fast-draw against three bad guys, "I SAID I don't have much use for them.  Never said I didn't know how to use one."

I've shot and killed four people in combat. How many have YOU killed in combat and how many rounds did it take you to do it?  I took four.  Or do you just shoot fellow Americans for exercising their first amendment rights - rights so important, the founding fathers put them FIRST?

 Here's a little history lesson for you: Swords, guns, cannons and all manner of "arms" weren't created to shoot tin cans.  They were created to kill people.  That's the point, scooter.  When used AS INTENDED, they kill people.  They've been adapted to other things, but I could do without guns at the Olympics or shooting skeet if it came to that.  Even though we're not talking about the Olympics (because what we do in the U.S. has no effect on other countries) or shooting skeet.  We're talking about ways of reducing gun violence and you go all knee-jerky on it as if we're going to break down your door and take all your toys away.

Please don't insult the intelligence of those who read this to delude them into thinking that you keep guns strictly for sport.  You threatened ME.  "...come and see me first but don't expect to be allowed to leave if this is your position...". Guns are intended to kill people and all else is practice.  That's all.

The bottom line Elroy is that if the American people decide to change the Constitution, they can do it.  The "bill of rights" can be voted out of existence.  I don't expect it to be and I'm not saying it should be.  I'm not particularly interested in taking your guns away from you any more than you are in taking them away from me (though since I likely can out-shoot you at range and you threatened me, you may be more motivated to consider that possibility if you are as paranoid as you sound.)  That presumes, of course, that because I disagree with you, you still think I'm as entitled to gun ownership as your blind friend.

What I AM interested in is reducing the violence done with guns.  Lowering the annual American body count due to firearms from tens of thousands to merely thousands.  My preference is to ban or heavily restrict all weapons capable of a rate of fire greater than four rounds per minute. But for those that meed that criteria, I'm in favor of open carry.  If you think about it, assuming you're capable, and assuming you did have an American history class somewhere in your life, you may have a clue of what class of firearms I'm talking about.

You have no rational argument to keep assault weapons in the hands of the citizens (and you will hate life if you think you can argue that it "keeps the government in line" when you'd be facing the most powerful military on the face of the planet with weaponry that so outclasses anything you can legally own that you may as well be using sling-shots), and no reasonable argument that anyone needs anything more than a slow-shooting firearm - say nothing more than a double-barreled weapon. for sporting, hunting or personal protection.

Argue why that's irrational or unreasonable.  I dare you.

In the meantime, let's keep the terrorist threats to a minimum.  That's not a right in these United States, either.

dontn123
dontn123

@Galen   Ate many rats have ya.....when people get hungry anything that can't get away will be on the menu.....the thing that comes to mind last is the dahmer party where they ate the HUMAN dead from their camp.   If I die you can eat my penis and testicles.  You are welcome in advance

Galen
Galen

@timmyjonce @dontn123 

There is  nothing wrong with eating a rat, then any other animal... perception.

Much like most of your long winded rant, its yours!

timmyjonce
timmyjonce

@dontn123 @timmyjonce  to me its amazing how many people are unable to plant a garden, hunt, fish or feed themselves. take away all weapons then  stop all deliveries of food to a city, close off all exits and let them eat each other, they cant fight their way out and without basic hunting skills..  it turns out you cant chase down a wild animals on foot no matter how hungry you are..  they will still have rat traps.. How do you like you're rat cooked?

dontn123
dontn123

@timmyjonce That is why the British used to and still do practice the FOX and the Hound.  

After battles the fleeing opponents would be given no quarters thus were chased down and eliminated.  Which if you think about it was brilliant for never having to fight them again.

patriot4evermore
patriot4evermore

@wrathbrow Well, ever since sin entered the world, all sorts of bad things happen.  Almost every single bad thing that happens or has happened to mankind is the result of sin.  

DevinBlagbrough
DevinBlagbrough

@Galen @patriot4evermore @dontn123 @LabOn64 So you believe creating a list of where guns exist and putting it on the internet is a good way to keep guns out of the hands of criminals, i.e. thieves?   WTF?  Can't see a single wrinkle in that logical argument... NOT!

DevinBlagbrough
DevinBlagbrough

@Galen @dontn123 @LabOn64 Guns don't kill Galen.... God has nothing to do with this but that is just as much as "guns floating around killing people" has to do with this.   Don't fight crazy with more crazy - but since you won't find support for "make guns illegal so people who do illegal things won't have them" in ANY form of a logical argument, you may just have to realize your stance is crazy.


JohnBrhel
JohnBrhel

You want to be armed at work? I so hope that you don't live in any sort of proximity to me!

Hadrewsky
Hadrewsky

@patriot4evermore @Galen @dontn123 @LabOn64 

"Anything that can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities"

-Voltaire

People like you that believe Creationism and such superstitious nonsense because of an outdated Bronze Age book full of contradiction and able to support any argument is exactly the problem ... You can not trust irrational idiots.

Galen
Galen

@patriot4evermore @Galen @dontn123 @LabOn64 


When there is very limited access to lethal weaponry for joe citizen, no gun to pick up, for most. Every gun owned by owners, should be listed on the internet, if not, it should be illegal. No one is taking away guns, just bazzokaaaaaaaas and a near infinite amount of bullets.

Guns kill no matter how you try to rationalize or excuse. Way to easy access, way to much gun-builder supported NRA, who only care about the millions the industry make for it and it million dollar a year lobbyist/CEO, to keep the $400 million dollar enterprise afloat. Individual membership is only half the contributions to this bullying conservative fear-mongering enterprise. And half of them only belong and pay dues because you are FORCED to otherwise you would not be allowed to go to gunnnnnner ranges, you know, and fire lethal weaponry, and yes guns kill when there is NO regulations. 

patriot4evermore
patriot4evermore

@Galen @dontn123 @LabOn64 Answer me this question:  How do guns kill people without a person to actually pick it up and fire?  How?  If you can tell me how a gun can kill, then please do.  I have never seen any gun get up and kill anything.  

And, murder started with Cain killing Abel.  Since then, murder has been a part of human life, with whatever weapon, or no weapon at all besides bare hands.  I, personally, would like to know I at least have a chance if I am at work, and some lunatic comes in wanting to settle a score.  How will you protect yourself if you are in a bad situation?  I see you throw out some name calling.  I don't think that hurts our feelings anymore.