A writer for the Daily Beast says it is time to “think big or shut up on gun control”. I suggest he choose the “shut up” option because as the proverb, and various historical figures have said, “it is better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak and remove all doubt”.
The author begins by saying, “Making the same arguments over and over isn’t changing anything.” I guess his solution was to abandon all arguments, and illogically appeal to emotion. The problem is that he pretends if only enough people felt sad when guns are mentioned, gun violence would be prevented. His other suggestions include keeping guns out of normal people’s hands… which is the same argument that has been made over and over again. Perhaps the 5 million member strong NRA is not a “special interest group”, but rather represents what mainstream America knows: you cannot stop the guilty by punishing the innocent.
1. Grassroots activism targeting corporations. A band of courageous mothers lead by Shannon Watts have created “Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense” and are engaged in a grassroots campaign in same vein as Mothers Against Drunk Driving. They not only protested outside the NRA’s national convention, they have been effective in convincing Chipotle and Starbucks to not allow open carry of weapons in their stores and have now set their sights on Target.
First off, Shannon Watts, aka Shannon Troughton has been in public relations for years, as opposed to her image as a home grown activist who just couldn’t take the violence anymore. No, she has worked for corporations like Monsanto in public relations, and is skilled at manipulating corporations and the media. So she was very at home convincing Chipotle and Starbucks to make their stores more dangerous by declaring them personal protection free zones. Jack in the Box has been robbed at gunpoint 3 times since the CEO asked people to leave their guns at home. A North Carolina restaurant with a “no guns allowed” sign was also robbed at gunpoint on May 19. So really Shannon and her group are trying to make Chipotle, Starbucks, Hallmark, and Target less safe for workers and customers, asking them to be defenseless in the name of ideology. Well Target and Hallmark employees have moms too, and their moms don’t want them to be murdered either.
Shannon also recently responded to the claim that good guys with guns stop bad guys with guns by saying, “This has never happened. Data shows it doesn’t happen.” In addition to the examples in the article of good guys with guns stopping bad guys, a CDC report found that more lives are saved each year in the USA by someone using a gun than taken. The claim is even more ludicrous when you consider that police take down bad guys with guns everyday, but police cannot be everywhere. So while moms demand action, anyone who can think knows that double-action works better to stop a criminal. Oh, and by the way, I didn’t see any of the protesters outside the NRA annual meeting.
The author of the Daily Beast article also suggests holding up pictures of dead people so that “something will be done” about gun violence. I think posting pictures of dead criminals–shot by good guys’ guns–would be more effective. Or maybe suing the NRA would help, he suggests, since if they hadn’t opposed particular gun laws, lives could have been saved. And I would in turn suggest suing Mom’s Demand Action if anyone you know is killed in a gun free zone. And while we’re at it, let’s sue Ford if someone dies in a car, and sue the farmers’ market if someone chokes on a carrot. What about the ACLU lobbying to protect Fourth and Fifth amendment rights? We could sue them if they keep criminals on the street by refusing to allow cops to search and arrest anyone arbitrarily.
4. Rewrite the Second Amendment. I’m not saying repeal it, but take a page from the pro-gun lobby who for 20-plus years preached, wrote academic papers, held seminars, etc., to support the then-radical notion that the Second Amendment bestowed a personal right to own a gun, thus making it more challenging to enact laws that restrict access to them. Of course, the Second Amendment says no such thing.
Except, of course, when it says exactly that, in plain black and white. “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.” (Emphasis added). Such a radical notion that the Bill of Rights refers to individual freedom! Let’s see what some other amendments refer to. (Emphasis added).
First Amendment: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”
Fourth Amendment: “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”
Ninth Amendment: “The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.”
Does the author really think that “the right of the people” or “the people” does not refer to individual rights? Or does only the American military have the right to peaceably assemble? Somehow “the people” does not refer to an individual right in the Second Amendment, but does when referring to the right to free speech, the right to be secure against unreasonable searches, the right to practice or not practice a religion? Obviously “the people” in the Constitution means each individual has whatever right is being discussed.
And just in case there was any doubt, the Ninth Amendment clears it up: these aren’t the people’s only rights. They also have natural rights, that cannot be denied, even when they aren’t specifically mentioned in the Constitution. One of these natural rights is to protect myself when someone threatens my life or my property. And an attempt to disarm me, and make me submit to the will of a criminal because I follow the laws, denies and disparages my right to life, my right to defense, my right to property.
These idiotic suggestions are not new, they are not “thinking big”, they are the same old punish the innocent, disarm the people that follow the laws, ignore the real problem, demonize the good guys, put yourself at risk, and submit to criminals propositions that are paraded as a way to “make us safe”. Well the author said it himself, it is time to think big or shut up on gun control. Since he is obviously incapable of thinking (let alone thinking big), then it is time he shut up, instead of creating a giant hunting preserve for the criminally insane.