Predictably, just like after any mass shooting or terrorist attack involving guns, a gun control lobby used the Orlando tragedy to push a fury of new gun bills at state and federal level.
Interestingly, since this was an act of terrorism, committed by a self-proclaimed ISIS supporter who is a Muslim, the debate is about gun control and not terrorism. We cannot have an honest debate about terrorism, because it would create a backlash against Muslims… OK then.
In California, the old and tried rhetoric immediately came from the left: the gun laws we have don’t work to curb gun violence – look at Orlando! – so we need to have more of them. I love the logic of it – what we are doing does not work, so we need more of it. Even better, Florida laws have nothing to do with California laws. But the fact that Orlando slaughter is immediately used to push the agenda shows the exploitive nature of proponents of ever increasing gun ownership restrictions. Couple examples below:
Statement by California Senate President pro Tempore Kevin de Leon (D-Los Angeles): http://sd24.senate.ca.gov/news/2016-06-12-statement-california-senate-leader-tragedy-orlando
In California, Democrats voted yesterday to advance eleven new bills, which would further increasing burden on legal gun ownership in the state. Brown is likely to sign all of them. (SB 869, SB 894, SB 1235, SB 1407, SB 1446, SB 880, AB 1664, AB 1673, AB 1674, AB 1695 and AB 2607)
Some of the new bills are bluntly aimed at more government control of legal gun owners:
- SB 1235 – mandates registration of ammo purchases, and limits the purchase options to face-to-face (no internet orders).
- SB 1446 – mandates legal owners of magazines that hold more than 10 rounds to get rid of them by selling to a licensed dealer, turning them in for no compensation or destroying them.
- AB 1673 – expands a definition of a firearm to include firearm parts.
- AB 1674 – expands the prohibition of purchasing more than one hand gun in any 30 day period to all fire arms.
- AB 2607 – would let an employer or coworker seek a gun violence restraining order. The current gun violence restraining order law went into effect January 1, 2016. It allows concerned family members or law enforcement officers to petition a court for a Gun Violence Restraining Order (GVRO). In situations where there is sufficient evidence for a judge to believe that an individual poses a danger to self or others, the GVRO will temporarily prohibit the individual from purchasing or possessing firearms or ammunition and allow law enforcement to remove any firearms or ammunition already in the individual’s possession. This power should not rest with anyone’s boss or coworker. The law enforcement already has the power, call a cop and let them sort it out.
The answer to gun violence, in my opinion, is to focus on violent people, not guns owned by law abiding citizens. Guns are tools that can be used for good or evil. Religion can be also used as a tool for good or evil. It can be used as a spiritual guide to moral, peaceful life, it can be used to control millions of people, and it can be used to radicalize (and control) people. The latter is what Islamic extremists have mastered.
So if you are of an opinion that to deal with our problem of gun violence is not to address the violence but to restrict possession of the tools the violent people use to commit crimes – the guns, would you apply the same logic to a tool of today’s terrorists – the religion?
Should in your opinion Muslims apply for a Muslim license like gun owners have to apply for gun license? Should imams be licensed and controlled by the government like gun dealers? Should Muslims be restricted to what Muslim texts they may buy? Should they only be allowed to buy one Koran every 30 days? That certainly sounds crazy to me – but so does punishing legal gun owners for actions of criminals.
California has some of the strictest gun laws in the country but we have plenty of gun violence – even a recent terrorist attack. No amount of gun laws prevented that. The solution to gun violence is not to push more gun laws that don’t work, but to invest in programs that do work. Yes, there are programs that work to reduce violence by a whole lot but you don’t hear about them much. (See my earlier blog for some references.)
Perhaps the gun legislation is not about public safety, but about destruction of the Second Amendment. If you are a member of a government elite, who does not want to serve but who wants to rule, the words in the Constitution like “We the people” or “… the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed” are inconvenient.
Maybe that is why the movement to view the Constitution as something to be reinterpreted as time goes by is so strong in Washington. Maybe that is why Obama, after he swore to uphold and protect the Constitution of the United States of America, referred to it as an “outdated document” that needed changing. Perhaps Obama never heard of a constitutional amendment.
America is the only country in the world whose constitution tells government what it is expected and allowed to do. The rest of the “free” world has constitutions that tell its citizens what they are allowed to do. We forget that difference – and we forget how many our people died defending that principle.
Constitution is not something to be “reinterpreted” by every administration to fit its agenda. It is the law of the land. And the Second Amendment is in it so that we the people have a way to protect ourselves against a tyrannical government. We are well on the way to tyrannical government so it only makes sense that there is such a push for the government to know who has what gun and who is buying what ammunition. The folks who gobble up the public safety argument are just useful idiots serving the government elite, as Saul Alinski would put it.