On Wednesday President Obama announced some initial plans to address the uptick in mass killings due to the ease of obtaining military style guns with high capacity ammunition clips. Of course the gun lobby lost their minds about it because they falsely believe that any regulation is equal to banning guns. The truth is, reasonable regulation will lower the chance of more Newtown type mass killings. Many of the screeching arguments used by the gun lobby are weak and don’t hold up to logic and reason.
As expected, the two key recommendations on gun violence announced by President Obama today—in a feisty appearance in which he called out opponents to sensible reform—were universal background checks on anybody buying a gun from any source and a renewed ban on semi-automatic assault weapons together with a maximum limit of 10 rounds in the capacity of magazines for semi-automatic firearms—rifles, pistols and shotguns.
But the president isn’t waiting for Congress. He also took immediate action on a list of 23 items, executive orders and other matters under his purview, before he left the South Court Auditorium where the anti-gun violence measures were announced. Unlike what extremists have been saying, none of these have anything to do with the right-wing claim of “gun-grabbing.” Indeed, they are extremely modest.
Some of the executive orders include appointing a director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), calling for more research on gun violence, and making it easier to report those with mental illnesses to keep them from buying guns.
The reaction to the President’s plan from the right has been the usual off the wall crazy talk and I wanted to point out some of the arguments I’ve heard against it and gun control in general.
We just need to enforce the gun laws we already have
I agree but the gun lobby has worked for decades to eliminate or water down gun laws we have on the books. For example the ATF, the primary government agency that deals with guns and gun laws hasn’t had a director since 2006 when a member of Congress on the gun lobby payroll got a law passed that required any appointment had to be confirmed by Congress. Having no leadership makes it hard for the agency to function which was the point of the gun lobby’s action.
The research into gun violence, which would give us some actual evidence to base future gun laws and policy on, has been stifled by the gun lobby’s pals in Congress for years.
Jon Stewart, host of The Daily Show, gives more examples of the gun lobby watering down or eliminating current gun laws that make the argument “We just need to enforce the gun laws we already have” laughable.
If a lot of guns are so bad then why does the President (and his children at school) have so many guns protecting them?
This is just a plain silly argument and points out the foundation of a paranoid fear the gun lobby uses to enrich their industry. The President and his children are constant targets for those who wish to either do harm to our country or to simply make a political statement. The average family are not constant targets. Having a healthy concern for the safety of your family is a good thing but being armed with an AR-15 or having Jim the janitor at school armed isn’t going to protect your children from harm.
If arming people is such a good thing then why not give little Johnny a Glock to protect himself. Even a gun nut would think that was crazy because Johnny can’t be relied on to make a sensible decision on when to use or not use the gun. Giving a school janitor or teacher with little to no training a gun to protect children is just one step up in craziness to giving the kids the guns themselves.
Oh and the 11 “armed school security guards” mentioned in the NRA ad and right wing blogsophere is false. Besides all those guns protecting the President isn’t the only reason he is protected. President Reagan was shot in 1981 even surrounded by the Secret Service. They now use threat analysis and layered security. The guns are for response to an actual threat not only for protection.
If you are so concerned about the death of children then where is the outrage over the murder of thousands of children through abortion?
Murder is an illegal killing. Abortion is not illegal so it isn’t murder. My question would be why are you so unconcerned with the deaths of the children in the Newtown shooting that you won’t even acknowledge that the crazy person who had the gun wouldn’t have murdered 20 children if he didn’t have the gun in the first place.
Why aren’t people outraged at the attempt to violate my 2nd amendment rights?
People say that we must have unlimited gun rights to protect ourselves from the “tyranny of the government”. Taking up arms against the government is treason as the southern states found out during the civil war not to mention your AR-15 will be no match for an Abrams tank or a fleet of Cobra Attack helicopters.
These same people, outraged about the violation of their rights, like to ignore the rights of other people. They want to ban same sex marriage, abortion, and do away with any laws that protect equal rights. I might be more sympathetic if they didn’t cherry pick what rights they think are important. Of course attacks on other’s rights plays into their sad paranoid fantasy world that assault rifles some how protect them from yet innocent people actually get killed by people subscribing to that delusion.
The 2nd amendment says “well regulated” and court rulings also allow for some restrictions. That is how it should be. Rights in the Bill of Rights aren’t unlimited.
Something else to think about when someone tries to the old Founding fathers argument for unlimited gun rights protecting democracy:
The real reason the Second Amendment was ratified, and why it says “State” instead of “Country” (the Framers knew the difference – see the 10th Amendment), was to preserve the slave patrol militias in the southern states, which was necessary to get Virginia’s vote. Founders Patrick Henry, George Mason, and James Madison were totally clear on that . . . and we all should be too.
In the beginning, there were the militias. In the South, they were also called the “slave patrols,” and they were regulated by the states.
So the 2nd amendment wasn’t meant to protect democracy from the tyranny of a rogue government – like most gun nuts believe – but to protect white people from rampaging slaves.
Personally I would like to see all guns banned but until that happens I support reasonable gun laws that aren’t watered down and actually does what we need them to do – reduce the chance of more mass killings.
It’s obvious the gun lobby and those who support them have no intention of actually protecting children and families. They only want to further enrich themselves through false, illogical, and irrational arguments.