'The true Soldier fights not because he hates what is in front of him, but because He loves what is behind him.' -G. K. Chesterton

28 September 2010

It's Not About Guns

It's made the rounds and no doubt by now most have seen it. It's the 20 questions by japete.
I want to comment but I not going to post her questions. They're too vague and too loaded. Instead of going line by line, here is my response.

Ms. japete

America is overburdened by laws. We have a law on the books for just about anything and any behavior you care to name. The problem isn't a dearth of laws it's a broken justice system. When convicted murderers can go free (and please note how many of those examples escaped) to kill again and 12 year old girls can be arrested for doodling on her desk with an erasable pen then the system is clearly open to interpretation and abuse. How long before any crime, even traffic violations, are grounds for a lifetime gun ban? Who decides? You? Me? A politician? A judge who may be a political hack with an axe to grind? How about we concentrate on rehabilitation, recidivism rates and getting qualified psychiatric help for those who need it for as long as they need it and stop blaming inanimate objects. Banning guns is a little like banning pregnancies among teenagers. You can yell til you're red in the face but they'll still steal off to Make Out Point and figure out where the monkey hid the peanut.

If I don't need to so much as show an ID to vote then why should I be subjected to a background check to exercise a Constitutional Right? Where you and I fail to see eye to eye is in the idea that I know that the Constitution is the guarantor of my Rights and you believe it's the federal government. It's not about the guns it's about who exercises control and how far reaching that control is. If we can't get past that then we really are talking in two different languages.

The whole point of the 20 questions, as asked, would be moot if banning were not the agenda. Of course, banning and confiscation are two very, very different things. Banning is as easy as signing a bill into law but confiscation takes flesh and blood men and women on the ground to make it happen. I think that I, and those who think like me, can be excused if we continue the argument against banning because confiscation carries perils no one wants to visit. Of the two of us I thinks it's probably safe to say I'm the only one who has taken guns from people who really, really didn't want me to have them and all I can say is it is always risky and frequently hazardous.

Yes, I am in fact a member and supporter of the TEA Party. Please remember that the origin of the TEA was Taxed Enough Already. The TEA Party is the only true grass roots political movement in existence and the left is going to have to deal with us sooner or later. I am an Oath Keeper, retired local police officer and an Army and National Guard veteran. I'm also a husband, father and grandfather. It takes a lot to make me a member of the fringe but somehow the msm and the democratic party (as well as the mainstream gop) seems to have done so. I am unapologetic.

A firearm, in the hands of The People, is used to protect Life, Liberty and in some states, Property. You can parse that any way you want to but it's a plain, simple statement of Truth. Any law abridging the Right of The People to Keep and Bear Firearms is unconstitutional on it's face. I am forced into that position because "common sense" gun laws are exceedingly scarce of common sense. There are laws on the books to cover any conceivable bad thing anyone could do to someone else regardless of choice of instrument. A person stabbed to death is no less dead than someone shot to death. Either We The People are sovereign and the final arbiters of our lives or we're not. In which case we're subjects and not citizens and I find that unacceptable.

Gun laws are being enforced every day in every jurisdiction in this nation. It hasn't made a lick of difference. It's like the war on drugs. The only things that's accomplished it to drive up the price to consumers resulting in more crime, increased the profit margin for the manufacturer/dealer who can then reinvest that money into increasing their market share and fatalities among the innocent who get caught up in the crossfire resulting from the internecine warfare produced by the gangs as a result of territorial pressures. Banning guns is an exercise in futility and a potential tool for oppression in the hands of people demonstrably unable to resist the temptations of power.

If you're in the public arena and you're offended by the discourse then you need to grow a thicker skin. The open debate of ideas is mad, chaotic, loud, profane and often unsavory. It's supposed to be and if that's more than you can handle then take up less stressful past times. You could not imagine the things I've been called on duty.

I tend to view my fellow citizens through the lens of my own anecdotal experiences and naturally optimistic nature. I believe the majority of them are well aware of the awesome power represented in any modern firearm. Firearms, by the way, that have been improved through the years as a result of (among other things such as quality control, market share, etc.) civil penalties resulting from shoddy design and manufacture. Many states, California for instance, require all firearms sold to pass a drop test. See how market forces and a free marketplace works? If any gun owner is so stupid as to mishandle a firearm in such a way as to kill or injure then there are already a host of laws on the books to deal with that unfortunate happenstance.
Let's enforce the laws against hurting people and their stuff regardless of the tool used that are already on the books before we start banning inanimate objects.

You can compile all the statistics on gun deaths you want and include any category you desire and more power to you. They mean absolutely nothing. Constitutional Rights cannot be removed because a person or group has statistics they believe warrant such action.

Virtually every death, no matter the cause, is felt deeply by some loved one. Are you campaigning for the cure of disease? Hunger? How about traffic fatalities? Drownings? Stabbings? Falls? I could go on but you get the idea. Are you advocating against drunk driving with a 20 question post? 2o Questions for those who have swimming pools and kids? No? If you're focusing only on gun deaths then you're biased against an object and those who own them. I've lost family members to Cancer so I concentrate my fund raising efforts there but I don't call for the banning of anything that might cause cancer. I work for a cure and try to educate people to make sound choices and rely on their good sense. You can do this with guns as well. Take a course from the NRA and become an advocate for safe gun handling practices. Support the NRA's Eddie Eagle program that teaches kids not to touch guns. Advocate for safety where you can have an impact instead of for banning where you can't.

I have no reason to doubt the stories you post but if you want to impress me with your sincerity and lack of bias include stories where lives have been saved by the use of a firearm. Here's some stories for you to read and ponder. Lives saved only because they had immediate access to a firearm.

Nothing happens in a vacuum. The BATFE, as an organization, reflects the desires of their political masters. In my opinion their ranks are largely populated by honest, dedicated, sincere men and women who only want to fight crime and have a positive impact on their communities and society in general. But, in it's current incarnation and with it's current leadership, most of those agents are being sent to do things that are in violation of the Second Amendment. So yes, I do have some concerns. If we had leadership at the federal level that believed in protecting American Rights I would feel differently. The fact is that we don't and haven't in a very long time.

Let me sum up here. Gun ownership is a specifically illustrated Right of The People enumerated in the Second Amendment to The Constitution of The United States of America. "Shall Not Be Infringed". Asking The People to give up some part of that Right is the same as asking us to give up any part of the Bill of Rights.

Try this.

Background checks for every article you write before publication. 10 day waiting period for all blog posts and no automatic comment filters without an additional permit. After all, you might call someone you disagree with a liar or other demeaning name and hurt their feelings leading to almost any outcome you care to name.

How about background checks before a date? After all you might be a past domestic violence offender.

The bottom line is this. This country is made up of people. Imminently fallible, frequently wrong, asinine, stupid, coarse and short sighted people. That's exactly why The Constitution exists in the first place, so one group of those people can't force their views and prejudices on the rest. Just as I can't legally require you to write only what I deem to be safe and inoffensive neither can you compel me to give up my Second Amendment Right to Keep and bear firearms.

I'm all for compromise on most things but not on this issue. All the compromising is being placed on the shoulders of everyday Americans who have done nothing more than exercise a basic Constitutional Right. I'm always willing to talk and debate but I won't compromise on this issue. Ever. If that makes unreasonable then that is a sobriquet I will bear with pride.

Now that I've taken the time and care to answer your questions, if not exactly in the fashion you asked for, how about answering one from me?

Do You believe in the Constitution of The United States of America and the Bill of Rights or not?



The DO said...

Give me some time and I can work up a good essay on this. Hamilton and Madison both addressed arms and the 2nd amendment in the Federalist papers, and both Washington and Jefferson addressed the issue as well. It's beyond a doubt that the Founders believed that all men should be armed, and that if they weren't, the liberty of the nation was at risk. But, I'll get right on proving that:)

Six said...

Sounds good DO. I'm looking forward to reading that. Of course, you do have a few other things occupying your time at the moment.

Daphne said...

Changing an anti-gun mind is no easy thing, so I finally stopped trying.

But your effort was exceptionally well-reasoned, Six.

Six said...

Thanks Daphne. I think I'm going follow your advice and leave it at this one attempt. It's too tiring arguing at brick walls.