The Moderate Conservative’s Perspective on Gun Control

Fair warning, I’m about to step onto my soapbox.  California and the rest of far-left-wing America: come on, now.

The media outlets, national, local, and social alike, have been reporting since 2012 the desire of the law-makers of the Democratic party to limit, restrict, heavily restrict, or eliminate altogether the Second Amendment of the Constitution of the United States of America.  This really bothers me on so many different levels.  Allow me to explain.

We all, in the firearm community, have seen the video clip of the complete moron who knows next to nothing about guns as a whole in the press room of the white house talking about how a “…30-caliber clip, to disperse with 30 bullets in half a second.  30 magazine clip in half a second.”  Yes, that sounds like nails on a chalkboard to me, too.  I think the best video I’ve seen is from “David West” on YouTube:

 

 

Unfortunately there are many people who believed this idiot, but not for the reasons you may expect.  You see, the vast majority of America is simply ignorant.  Not in the negative-connotation meaning of the word, but the Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary meaning of the word; lacking knowledge or information, resulting from or showing lack of knowledge.  That’s it, plain and simple.  The same way you occasionally get taken by the door-to-door vacuum cleaner salesman (ok, not the most modern reference but you get the point) or the smartphone salesperson (that’s better) who sells you on something that is more expensive than you wanted and capable of far more than you will ever realize because you don’t know enough about it but they make it sound good, the non-firearms population draw their conclusions and shape their opinions from what they hear.  Now, he is a sitting US Senator, so clearly he is a man who knows what he’s talking about and can be trusted, right?  Unfortunately that’s what people default to (yes even you) at some point.  They trust someone whom they do not know on a subject matter they know very little about because of the title of the individual and the confidence with which they present the information.

I will use someone in my life as an example, my sister-in-law.  She is a great person, truly, and I would do anything for her at the drop of a hat; she’s family.  However, when it comes to political viewpoints we could not be farther apart.  Her father (my father-in-law) and I are on the same page when it comes to politics, thankfully, with him being farther right than I am (I consider myself a “modern conservative”).  On Facebook (the bane of the millennial existence) she “liked” a post from PBS that, according to them, was footage of the President fielding a question from a gentleman in the audience after the live broadcast was finished regarding his stance on gun control in the U.S.  Here is the video:

 

 

Now, a few things about this video that I observed:

  1. The President never answered the question that was asked.
    1. Like any other politician who does not have a good answer to the question posed, he deflects and moves the discussion into an area that they can control and that is relatable to the majority. In this case he chose vehicles and automobile-related fatalities.
  2. His body language while the question was being asked was that of someone who was angry and defensive.
    1. They say a picture says a thousand words, so what does a 15-second video clip say? Well, in this case (to me) it says that he is tired of folks not agreeing with him on this subject, tired of the seemingly calm and educated people who pose questions and wish to have “common-sense” discussion on the topic, and he feels personally attacked when his home town of Chicago is used as an example where the “wet dream” of anti-gun firearms regulation does not work as an answer to gun violence.
  3. He completely ignored the “Chicago” portion of this question as well as the part about “…instead hold the bad guys accountable for their actions.”
    1. The President ignores many things in this posed question, but the part that I found completely staggering is that he failed to address the statement of “hold the bad guys accountable for their actions.” I’ll touch on this a bit later.
  4. “There have been more guns sold since I’ve been President than just about any other time in U.S. history.”
    1. For a very simple reason, Mr. President: people are afraid their 2nd Amendment inalienable rights may be stripped away from them during your presidency because of the campaign platform you stood on, your history with this subject matter, and your actions that you’ve taken during your time in office.  Simply put, it’s their FEAR that drives their purchases, not your advocacy for what you’re trying to pass off as “common-sense gun laws”.  The same way the grocery stores are out of bread, eggs, and milk when a winter storm approaches, law-abiding American citizens are looking to protect themselves and their family from a storm they see on the horizon.
  5. “We used to have really bad auto fatality rates.”
    1. With all due respect, Mr. President, we still do not have what I would consider “good” auto fatality rates. In addition, auto fatalities are accountable for more deaths than gun-related fatalities in the United States, so why are we choosing to limit firearms and not automobiles?
  6. “We decided to crack down on drunk driving and texting.”
    1. I believe the term “crack down” is used a bit loosely here. Do people still text and drive?    Do people still drink and drive?  Yes.  Are innocent people killed from those who are texting/drinking and driving?  Yes.  Are both texting and drinking while driving against the law?  Yes.  It boggles my mind that a very educated member of society would be naïve enough and have the audacity to tell the general public that making something against the law will prevent that something from happening.  Many more examples can be given, but we simply do not have the time and I don’t want carpal tunnel.
  7. “Do you know Congress will not allow the CDC to study gun violence? They are not allowed to study it.”
    1. Now this is a matter I was not aware of and will look into further. This is where the firearms community differs from the far-left-wing self-proclaimed “activists”:  we are not afraid to admit we are ignorant (true definition of the word) in a specific area and then do much research to educate ourselves before we formulate an opinion.  Too often I am in conversations with people unfamiliar with firearms and the processes and laws in place who spout off about this or that because it’s what they heard from so and so when the information they were provided was incomplete or simply inaccurate.
  8. “…you don’t have to do any of that with respect to buying a gun.” Talking about having to be a licensed driver to buy a car.
    1. Now, I am not nor have I ever been a car salesman, but I am pretty sure if you walk into a dealership of any kind with cash in hand to buy a vehicle they will sell you that vehicle. Now, they may not allow you to drive it home, but then again do they have to check for a driver’s license?  I’ve bought many vehicles in my time and the only time I’ve ever had to provide my license is so the dealership may make a photo copy before a test drive.  I have NEVER had a background check run before I purchased a car before, either.  If what the President was eluding to here were true, we would disallow people with moving violation convictions on their record from buying and owning a vehicle.
  9. “…but because of the NRA I cannot prohibit those people from buying a gun.” Speaking about the No Fly List.
    1. The NRA is against this, of course, but not because of the reason he is leading you to believe. In fact, many people from all political parties and walks of life are against this for two very specific reasons.  First, there is no “due process” for someone before their name is placed on this Do Not Fly list, therefore making it inadmissible in court.  In addition to that, no one knows what someone has done that has caused their name to be on this list.  Does the wrong Google search put you on this list?  What if you’re ignorant (simple definition of the word) and want to become more educated about why these people feel the way they do toward an entire hemisphere?  I won’t even touch on the fact that if you have the same name as someone on the list then you are treated as such, or that no one knows if they are even on this list, or how to get off of it if you are, etc., etc., etc.  Secondly, the right to bear arms is an inalienable right to all United States citizens, given they have not committed a violent crime or have been deemed by the courts as mentally unstable.  At no point in the Constitution does it mention air travel (primarily because this didn’t exist at the time of its conception) therefore it is not a right, it is a privilege that is controlled by a government agency.

Now I am a firm believer of a saying that was told to me growing up that goes “Locks keep honest people honest.”  This means that if determined enough, someone who wants to get into that locked area simply will find a way.  The same can be said for firearms.  Simply banning certain things or all guns altogether will not stop people with malicious intent from getting their hands on them, or something far worse like explosives.  If someone is hell-bent on killing other people they will find a way to do it.  Bladed objects (knives, axes, etc.), automobiles, biological or chemical weapons, airborne or water-borne, bad people will do bad things.  If you think for a second that a gun can kill more people than anything I’ve mentioned above then you are sorely mistaken.  Two hijacked airplanes became weapons of mass destruction and killed thousands in New York on 9/11, the worst tragedy to befall America since Pearl Harbor, and not a single firearm was involved.

All firearm owners know that there is a process involved when purchasing a gun of any kind (and even ammunition and accessories in certain states) and that one does not simply walk in with a pile of money and walk out with an arsenal, thousands of rounds of ammunition, and body armor.  Every gun purchaser is already required to have a background check done, and this check is performed by the FBI themselves.  In some states there is a waiting period between the time you submit to purchase a gun and when you can legally take ownership of it.  In NO state can you buy a gun online and have it shipped to your house.  You must have it shipped to a licensed dealer (licensed by the BATFE) and they must run through the same background check process.  If you do not pass your background check by the FBI then you do not take ownership of the firearm.  It’s as simple as that.  For those unfamiliar with the process, however, they can be easily manipulated into believing the fallacies portrayed by prominent members of our government and sometimes even celebrities (disgusting, I know).

For anyone who proposes gun control on the basis of “Why do you need a gun that holds more than 10 rounds and shoots that fast?” I say this:  Why do you need a vehicle that can operate faster than 55 miles per hour?  It’s the exact same logic that applies to both, no matter what you may think.  Why do you go faster than 55 mph?  Well because you can and it’s fun.  Why do I have a firearm that can hold more than 10 rounds of ammunition and is easy to shoot?  Well because I can and it’s fun.  Also, it’s my Constitutional right as an American citizen to do just that.  However, if the government ever chooses to limit all top-speeds of vehicles to 55 mph there will simply be nothing you can do about it except to move out of the country or break the law.  Hell, by the same logic they could also ban all fast foods and dessert items that are high in calories because you may develop heart disease and/or diabetes.  Seems like I’m being ridiculous here but think about it logically, it’s the same argument.

The notion that a gun is a “weapon” really pisses me off.  Why?  Well because a gun is simply an object, a tool if you will.  It’s no different than a hammer or a circular saw.  It may not be used every day and it has a very specific purpose, but does that make a hammer or a saw a “weapon”?  Well let’s refer back to Merriam-Webster and explore the simple definition of the word “weapon”:  something that is used for fighting or attacking someone or for defending yourself when someone is attacking you, something that is used to win a contest or achieve something.  By definition, that means LITERALLY ANYTHING could be considered a “weapon” when used in this context.  That mobile phone in your pocket: a weapon if you throw it at someone.  Your brain: a weapon when you convince someone you’re right.  Simple definition of the word.  So to call something an “assault weapon” just because it resembles something that was used by someone else at a different point in time to achieve something, even if by violence and graphic nature, is absolutely ludicrous.  By that token all Cadillac’s are “assault weapons” because at some point in the past an old person in Florida ran a bunch of people over on a sidewalk.  I have an outrageous proposal:  how about instead of blaming the tools used as weapons during the act of an individual committing a crime, how about we focus our blame on the perpetrator who turned the simple, innate object into a weapon and committed the heinous act?  Also, why is it whenever there is an act of violence that does not involve a gun there is no focus on the weapon of choice?  How come we only focus on the tool-turned-weapon when it is a firearm?

Now, let’s get on to the media for a bit, shall we?  Is it just me or does it seem as if the sole purpose of a media outlet reporting on something that is related to firearms is ratings-related?  When was the last time you saw some idiot up there spouting off about how “assault rifles” are the most evil thing to ever happen to the world and that they are so easy to obtain you can get one in your morning cereal box?  Unfortunately you probably have a fairly accurate answer to that.  Now, when was the last time you saw that same person on a split-screen or in audience with someone who is a respectable and valued member of the firearms community?  Someone who is educated, knows the facts rather than regurgitating someone else’s opinions and views?  Someone who has used firearms as tools, but who would have no issues utilizing it as a weapon (true definition of the word) if-needed to save themselves or someone else?  It takes longer to think of such a case, assuming you can think of one at all, doesn’t it?  That is what is wrong with the media.  They bring in people who make for good television, but who are ultimately ignorant on the subject matter.  Cue the jackass journalist who just published his article stating that he was bruised and battered, physically and psychologically from his experience shooting a firearm that is used by literally millions of people world-wide.  If it really was as horrible of an experience as he made it appear to be, I have a simple question for him: why is it so popular?  Could it be that he intentionally misrepresented information, or outright lied, to promote himself, the paper he writes for, and his agenda?  To logical-thinking people it begs the question.

Lastly, the notion that manufacturers today are mass-producing “automatic” firearms for the masses is just asinine.  Are automatic firearms currently being manufactured?  Yes, for military, police, and government agencies.  Can you, as a private citizen, purchase an automatic firearm?  Yes, so long as that firearm was manufactured prior to 1986 (and you’ll pay heavily for it, too, making it unavailable to the masses).  Can you alter an existing firearm you own to make it automatic?  Not legally due to the Firearm Owners Protection Act of 1986 which was a bill originally introduced by a Republican and signed into law by a Republican President.

Unfortunately, the ignorant (again, simple definition of the word) such as my sister-in-law, are misled by the inaccurate adjectives and nouns used to describe civilian firearms of today.  What the media reports as an “automatic weapon” is, in reality, a semi-automatic firearm.  They don’t do that on purpose, though, right?  Wrong.  Hear me when I say the media, and even our President, are smart people.  There is no argument to that statement which holds any water.  These people are smart and each move they make is carefully calculated.  Diction, verbiage, vocabulary, tone; all of these things have been thought out long before you hear someone say something.  Unfortunately the one very important piece that is missing: research and the presentation of factual information.

So, the next time you turn on your television, or open your social media feed, or have a discussion with someone who is uninformed of the facts on this topic, just remember this:  ignorance breeds ignorance.  Don’t attack someone for having an opinion, rather open a dialogue and ask them why they feel a certain way toward firearm ownership.  Often just by doing this you will find that they have been led to believe inaccuracies from years of politicians and celebrities jamming these fallacies down their throats and using tragic events as stepping stones to climb to the top of their soapbox to promote their personal agenda (which should be a crime in and of itself).  Take the time to politely educate them on what it takes to buy a gun in your respective state, and what it takes to become licensed to carry one legally, and the taxes and upcharges that are associated with firearms, ammunition, and accessories.  The key, though, is to never lose your cool during the discussion.  Why?  For two simple reasons:  first, people will listen to you and trust what you’re saying to be true if presented in the same manner as the lie-breathing politicians and second, nothing pisses off an anti-gunner more than someone who likes guns, owns them legally, shoots them often, carries them everywhere, who knows the facts, who can’t be rattled, and who maintains a smile on their face.  So I guess I’m saying “kill them with kindness”, and facts.

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