Yesterday in The Forecaster, a Falmouth, Maine-based news organ, a story covered a recently-launched initiative campaign to get a background check measure on the 2016 ballot, and just as in Nevada and last year in Washington, the effort is getting big bucks support from Michael Bloomberg’s Everytown for Gun Safety lobbying group.
The story says $250,000 came from Everytown, and the spearhead of this movement is Jacqueline Sartoris, “the primary organizer in Brunswick for the Maine chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America.” That’s a group affiliated with Everytown and supported by Bloomberg.
The current gun control push is focused on so-called “universal background checks,” creating the false impression that a large share of firearms transactions don’t involve such checks. That’s an argument even the Washington Post Fact Checker has essentially declared bogus.
In the Libertarian Republic Wednesday, writer Grant Phillips discussed the situation in Chicago, and the slaying of a nine-year-old boy a few days ago in what may have been a gang-related revenge killing. Phillips observed, “Chicago, a liberal bastion of gun control, does not suffer from a lack of laws. It suffers from lawlessness.”
The Forecaster quoted retail gun dealer Ed Hardy, sales manager at C&R Trading Post. Hardy’s position is that Maine doesn’t need a Bloomberg background check measure, and that it is impossible to enforce. He bluntly observed that, “To tell an individual ‘I can’t swap with my buddy’ … that’s a tremendous amount of paperwork for really no (result). It’s not going to stop criminals (from getting guns).”
That’s the same argument offered by Second Amendment activists in Washington and Oregon. It’s the same position taken by gun rights advocates in Nevada, who are also facing a background check measure next year.
Gun prohibitionists complain that gun owners will not engage in a serious discussion about guns. What’s to discuss, when gun control proponents repeatedly push measures that they ultimately acknowledge – albeit begrudgingly – will not prevent the crimes they point to as excuses for their efforts? It is widely known that background checks didn’t stop either Fort Hood shooters, or the Aurora movie theater killer, or the Seattle Jewish Federation and Café Racer killers, or the Washington Navy Yard gunman, ad infinitum.
What’s to discuss when another writer in The Forecaster, discussed by this column yesterday, says that in his “ideal world” the Second Amendment should be replaced by a law that turns gun ownership into a government-regulated privilege? At least that writer was honest about the anti-gun mindset.
A civil discourse cannot launch when one side essentially wants to destroy the civil right of the other side. If anti-gunners want a serious discussion, they will have to acknowledge that criminals are not going to comply with any measures, even if both sides at the table reach some sort of agreement. They have to acknowledge that owning and bearing firearms is a constitutionally-protected, fundamental civil right, and no amount of tantrum-throwing will change that.
Criminals operate outside the law. Gun owners think these outlaws should be punished for their misdeeds. Gun control advocates think all gun owners should be penalized, instead.
That’s not a simplistic definition of the problem, that is the problem. Gun prohibitionists envision an “ideal world,” while constitutional rights advocates long ago realized we live in the real world.
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