Archive for category Second Amendment
As a student who was shot and wounded during the Columbine massacre, I have a few thoughts on the current gun debate. In regards to your gun control initiatives:
Universal Background Checks
First, a universal background check will have many devastating effects. It will arguably have the opposite impact of what you propose. If adopted, criminals will know that they can not pass a background check legally, so they will resort to other avenues. With the conditions being set by this initiative, it will create a large black market for weapons and will support more criminal activity and funnel additional money into the hands of thugs, criminals, and people who will do harm to American citizens.
Second, universal background checks will create a huge bureaucracy that will cost an enormous amount of tax payers dollars and will straddle us with more debt. We cannot afford it now, let alone create another function of government that will have a huge monthly bill attached to it.
Third, is a universal background check system possible without universal gun registration? If so, please define it for us. Universal registration can easily be used for universal confiscation. I am not at all implying that you, sir, would try such a measure, but we do need to think about our actions through the lens of time.
It is not impossible to think that a tyrant, to the likes of Mao, Castro, Che, Hitler, Stalin, Mussolini, and others, could possibly rise to power in America. It could be five, ten, twenty, or one hundred years from now — but future generations have the natural right to protect themselves from tyrannical government just as much as we currently do. It is safe to assume that this liberty that our forefathers secured has been a thorn in the side of would-be tyrants ever since the Second Amendment was adopted.
Ban on Military-Style Assault Weapons
The evidence is very clear pertaining to the inadequacies of the assault weapons ban. It had little to no effect when it was in place from 1994 until 2004. It was during this time that I personally witnessed two fellow students murder twelve of my classmates and one teacher. The assault weapons ban did not deter these two murderers, nor did the other thirty-something laws that they broke.
Gun ownership is at an all time high. And although tragedies like Columbine and Newtown are exploited by ideologues and special-interest lobbying groups, crime is at an all time low. The people have spoken. Gun store shelves have been emptied. Gun shows are breaking attendance records. Gun manufacturers are sold out and back ordered. Shortages on ammo and firearms are countrywide. The American people have spoken and are telling you that our Second Amendment shall not be infringed.
10-Round Limit for Magazines
Virginia Tech was the site of the deadliest school shooting in U.S. history. Seung-Hui Cho used two of the smallest caliber hand guns manufactured and a handful of ten round magazines. There are no substantial facts that prove that limited magazines would make any difference at all. Second, this is just another law that endangers law-abiding citizens. I’ve heard you ask, “why does someone need 30 bullets to kill a deer?”
Let me ask you this: Why would you prefer criminals to have the ability to out-gun law-abiding citizens? Under this policy, criminals will still have their 30-round magazines, but the average American will not. Whose side are you on?
Lastly, when did they government get into the business of regulating “needs?” This is yet another example of government overreaching and straying from its intended purpose.
Selling to Criminals
Mr. President, these are your words: “And finally, Congress needs to help, rather than hinder, law enforcement as it does its job. We should get tougher on people who buy guns with the express purpose of turning around and selling them to criminals. And we should severely punish anybody who helps them do this.”
Why don’t we start with Eric Holder and thoroughly investigate the Fast and Furious program?
Furthermore, the vast majority of these mass murderers bought their weapons legally and jumped through all the hoops — because they were determined to murder. Adding more hoops and red tape will not stop these types of people. It doesn’t now — so what makes you think it will in the future? Criminals who cannot buy guns legally just resort to the black market.
Criminals and murderers will always find a way.
Mr. President, in theory, your initiatives and proposals sound warm and fuzzy — but in reality they are far from what we need. Your initiatives seem to punish law-abiding American citizens and enable the murderers, thugs, and other lowlifes who wish to do harm to others.
Let me be clear: These ideas are the worst possible initiatives if you seriously care about saving lives and also upholding your oath of office. There is no dictate, law, or regulation that will stop bad things from happening — and you know that. Yet you continue to push the rhetoric. Why?
You said, “If we can save just one person it is worth it.” Well here are a few ideas that will save more that one individual:
First, forget all of your current initiatives and 23 purposed executive orders. They will do nothing more than impede law-abiding citizens and breach the intent of the Constitution. Each initiative steals freedom, grants more power to an already-overreaching government, and empowers and enables criminals to run amok.
Second, press Congress to repeal the “Gun Free Zone Act.” Don’t allow America’s teachers and students to be endangered one-day more. These parents and teachers have the natural right to defend themselves and not be looked at as criminals. There is no reason teachers must disarm themselves to perform their jobs. There is also no reason a parent or volunteer should be disarmed when they cross the school line.
This is your chance to correct history and restore liberty. This simple act of restoring freedom will deter would-be murderers and for those who try, they will be met with resistance.
Mr. President, do the right thing, restore freedom, and save lives. Show the American people that you stand with them and not with thugs and criminals.
Severely Concerned Citizen, Evan M. Todd
Each time we gather to inaugurate a President we bear witness to the enduring strength of our Constitution – which our “progressive” judges and justices are attempting to re-write.
We affirm the promise of our democracy – when it suits our needs.
We recall that what binds this nation together is not the colors of our skin or the tenets of our faith or the origins of our names. What makes us exceptional — what makes us American — is our allegiance to an idea articulated in a declaration made more than two centuries ago:
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” – Life when it is wanted. Unalienable rights with the exclusion of religious freedom.
Today we continue a never-ending journey to bridge the meaning of those words with the realities of our time – revisionist reality according to secular humanists.
For history tells us that while these truths may be self-evident, they’ve never been self-executing; that while freedom is a gift from God, it must be secured by His people here on Earth. – The people whose rights are trashed by my HHS mandate.
The patriots of 1776 did not fight to replace the tyranny of a king with the privileges of a few or the rule of a mob. They gave to us a republic, a government of, and by, and for the people, entrusting each generation to keep safe our founding creed. – until I arrived here to destroy that.
And for more than two hundred years, we have. – My mob friends with SEIU and other unions are enforcing my wishes.
Through blood drawn by lash and blood drawn by sword, we learned that no union founded on the principles of liberty and equality could survive half-slave and half-free. We made ourselves anew, and vowed to move forward together.
Together, we determined that a modern economy requires railroads and highways to speed travel and commerce, schools and colleges to train our workers.
Together, we discovered that a free market only thrives when there are rules to ensure competition and fair play. – The rules of socialism and excessive government regulation and control.
Together, we resolved that a great nation must care for the vulnerable, and protect its people from life’s worst hazards and misfortune. – Except for the preborn, the disabled, and the elderly (who should think about hospice).
Through it all, we have never relinquished our skepticism of central authority, nor have we succumbed to the fiction that all society’s ills can be cured through government alone. – But they can be dictated by government, against the will of the people.
Our celebration of initiative and enterprise, our insistence on hard work and personal responsibility, these are constants in our character. – But which we rejected in the last election campaign when we promised government control from cradle to grave.
But we have always understood that when times change, so must we; that fidelity to our founding principles requires new responses to new challenges; that preserving our individual freedoms ultimately requires collective action. – Or better yet, collectivist actions at the expense of those founding principles.
For the American people can no more meet the demands of today’s world by acting alone than American soldiers could have met the forces of fascism or communism with muskets and militias. – Nor can the people be left alone to take initiatives through churches, ministries and charitable organizations to feed and clothe the poor, the destitute, the starving, and those whose lives have been uprooted by natural disasters. Nor can all meet the demands of today’s world with rising taxes and unsustainable debt, amidst excessive government regulation and control. Now you must overlook liberal fascism here at home.
No single person can train all the math and science teachers we’ll need to equip our children for the future, or build the roads and networks and research labs that will bring new jobs and businesses to our shores. – No person has ever suggested building the transcontinental railroad or reaching the moon alone. And now innovation and achievement is being denigrated, discouraged, and hampered by the growing tentacles of big government.
Now, more than ever, we must do these things together, as one nation and one people. – Actually, comrades, as one growing centralized government bureacracy.
This generation of Americans has been tested by crises that steeled our resolve and proved our resilience. A decade of war is now ending. An economic recovery has begun. – American and allied forces have substantially reduced the capabilities of Islamic terrorists. Yet no real recovery has begun except in the campaign mode mind of the president.
America’s possibilities are limitless, — with the freedom from excessive government regulation
…. for we possess all the qualities that this world without boundaries demands – Especially the southern U.S. border which I’m attempting to dissolve.
youth and drive; diversity and openness; an endless capacity for risk and a gift for reinvention. – Especially for those industries moving out of the reach of tax monsters in California and New York.
My fellow Americans, we are made for this moment, and we will seize it — so long as we seize it together. – Or I’ll seize it alone as I enact policies and executive orders unpopular with the people.
For we, the people, understand that our country cannot succeed when a shrinking few do very well and a growing many barely make it. – Courtesy of tax increases and demonization of the achievers who take risks investing their wealth to create jobs allowing many to feed their families.
We believe that America’s prosperity must rest upon the broad shoulders of a rising middle class. – Micromanaged by my ever-growing administration, undermined by my demolition of America’s business climate.
We know that America thrives when every person can find independence and pride in their work; — Despite my demands that all be dependent on government their entire lives, “independent” people like Julia. For when I refer to America, I’m talkin’ big government, baby.
when the wages of honest labor liberate families from the brink of hardship. – But not from overly burdensome taxation.
We are true to our creed when a little girl born into the bleakest poverty knows that she has the same chance to succeed as anybody else, because she is an American; she is free, and she is equal, not just in the eyes of God but also in our own. – If she is allowed to leave her mother’s womb without dismemberment, and to experience a life directed by the “god” of big government.
We understand that outworn programs are inadequate to the needs of our time. – Such as government programs encouraging dependency, teen pregnancy, and risky, life-altering behavior.
So we must harness new ideas and technology to remake our government, revamp our tax code, reform our schools, and empower our citizens with the skills they need to work harder, learn more, reach higher. – So they can give more of what’s theirs to a government which will waste the fruits of their hard-earned labor on failing businesses. So they can more fully indoctrinate students in schools failing to educate, so citizens can settle for mediocrity while surrendering their God-given, Constitution-affirming rights to big government.
But while the means will change, our purpose endures: a nation that rewards the effort and determination of every single American. – Yes, I thought this line would get a laugh!
That is what this moment requires. That is what will give real meaning to our creed. – The creed I learned from Frank Marshall Davis and Saul Alinsky.
We, the people, still believe that every citizen deserves a basic measure of security and dignity. – Unless they oppose my secular worldview and my policies and executive orders. As long as you give more of your money to Planned Parenthood. As long as more of you substitute pain pills and hospice for medical treatment.
We must make the hard choices to reduce the cost of health care and the size of our deficit. – While I continue to raise the debt ceiling and put deficit reduction out of reach forever.
But we reject the belief that America must choose between caring for the generation that built this country and investing in the generation that will build its future. – Wait a minute. I’m the first person to suggest this.
For we remember the lessons of our past, when twilight years were spent in poverty and parents of a child with a disability had nowhere to turn. – And now we proudly observe that 90 percent of preborn children with Down syndrome are not allowed to live.
We do not believe that in this country freedom is reserved for the lucky, or happiness for the few. – Or those who take risks and invest their resources to create industries employing millions and feeding families.
We recognize that no matter how responsibly we live our lives, any one of us at any time may face a job loss, or a sudden illness, or a home swept away in a terrible storm. – Or job-killing fines for not funding abortion pill mandates.
The commitments we make to each other through Medicare and Medicaid and Social Security, these things do not sap our initiative, they strengthen us. – Especially those of us raiding those funds!
They do not make us a nation of takers; they free us to take the risks that make this country great. – Though some would argue that those who took the risks, who employed people who provided for their families, now have a right to their social security as retired folks.
We, the – GOVERNMENT — people, still believe that our obligations as – CONTROL OF — Americans are not just to ourselves, but to all posterity. We will respond to the threat of climate change, — No matter how well it’s been proven a fantasy.
knowing that the failure to do so would betray our children and future generations. – And fail to increase tax coffers and close down the coal industry.
Some may still deny the overwhelming –UNDERWHELMING — judgment of science, but none can avoid the devastating impact of raging
fires and crippling drought and more powerful storms. – Fires caused by arsonists and by lightning. We still haven’t slowed the rise of the oceans and healed the planet; how can we control the weather?
The path towards sustainable energy sources will be long and sometimes difficult. – And cost taxpayers billions to reward Solyndra and other green companies even though we knew they were going under.
But America cannot resist this transition, we must lead it. – We will lead by downsizing our military and economic capacities. By killing jobs and increasing food stamp rolls.
We cannot cede to other nations the technology that will power new jobs and new industries, we must claim its promise. – I don’t care how many Solyndras I give your money to.
That’s how we will maintain our economic vitality – And sustain this slumping economy while repeating the myth of recovery ad nauseum.
and our national treasure — our forests and waterways, our crop lands and snow-capped peaks. That is how we will preserve our planet, commanded to our care by God. – It’s okay to bring religion into this now, even though I’ve long entertained doubts about my faith.
That’s what will lend meaning to the creed our fathers once declared. We, the people, still believe that enduring security and lasting peace do not require perpetual war. – But our Army has recognized conservatives as terrorist threats and we will stockpile bullets and take their guns and religious freedom away.
Our brave men and women in uniform, tempered by the flames of battle, are unmatched in skill and courage. – And the raging passions of homosexual lust in the barracks.
Our citizens, seared by the memory of those we have lost, know too well the price that is paid for liberty. The knowledge of their sacrifice will keep us forever vigilant against those who would do us harm. – Not counting those Islamic forces I’ve befriended and given hundreds of millions of your dollars to.
But we are also heirs to those who won the peace and not just the war; who turned sworn enemies into the surest of friends — and we must carry those lessons into this time as well. – Like my Hamas and Muslim Brotherhood buddies.
We will defend our people and uphold our values through strength of arms and rule of law. – Starting by gutting the United States Navy and refusing to defend the federal Defense of Marriage Act. By befriending the detainees at Gitmo.
We will show the courage to try and resolve our differences with other nations peacefully –- After the election, since I have more flexibility now.
not because we are naïve about the dangers we face, but because engagement can more durably lift suspicion and fear. – So don’t worry about any appropriate responses to future Benghazis.
America will remain the anchor of strong alliances in every corner of the globe. – Except for the Middle East, Fort Hood, Pakistan and a few other strategic locations
And we will renew those institutions that extend our capacity to manage crisis abroad, for no one has a greater stake in a peaceful world than its most powerful nation. – That would be the nation of Russia, which I’ve entrusted to take over as the world’s leading power.
We will support democracy from Asia to Africa, from the Americas to the Middle East, because our interests and our conscience compel us to act on behalf of those who long for freedom. — And we’ll support communism in Cuba, Venezuela, and Kenya.
And we must be a source of hope to the poor, the sick, the marginalized, the victims of prejudice –- not out of mere charity, but because peace in our time requires the constant advance of those principles that our common creed describes: tolerance and opportunity, human dignity and justice. – With the exceptions of the preborn, the Christian owners of businesses, my domestic enemies, and all who oppose the homosexual agenda.
We, the people, declare today that the most evident of truths –- that all of us are created equal –- is the star that guides us still; just as it guided our forebears through Seneca Falls, and Selma, and Stonewall – Stonewall, where lawless homosexuals threatened the lives of police officers doing their duty
just as it guided all those men and women, sung and unsung, who left footprints along this great Mall, to hear a preacher say that we cannot walk alone; to hear a King proclaim that our individual freedom is inextricably bound to the freedom of every soul on Earth. – And where people, even my white grandmother, should be judged by the content of their character and not by the color of their skin.
It is now our generation’s task to carry on what those pioneers began. For our journey is not complete until our wives, our mothers and daughters can earn a living equal to their efforts. – Unless they work for me and accept our pay scale: 18 percent less for women.
Our journey is not complete until our gay brothers and sisters are treated like anyone else under the law –- for if we are truly created equal, then surely the love we commit to one another must be equal as well. – And our heterosexual brothers and sisters are treated equally as well, until anti-bullying laws and hate crime laws apply equally to all.
Our journey is not complete until no citizen is forced to wait for hours to exercise the right to vote. – I promise an executive order allowing everyone voting for me to go to the head of the voting line, even if they arrived 10 minutes prior to the closing of the polls. And even if they can’t prove they are a citizen.
Our journey is not complete until we find a better way to welcome the striving, hopeful immigrants who still see America as a land of opportunity – And who still come here legally and assimilate, unlike those cheating and flouting immigration law by entering the country illegally, or those who smuggle humans or drugs across our borders.
until bright young students and engineers are enlisted in our workforce rather than expelled from our country. – Never mind the law; I need voters now!
Our journey is not complete until all our children, from the streets of Detroit – who escape the murder and violence
to the hills of Appalachia, to the quiet lanes of Newtown, know that they are cared for and cherished and always safe from harm. – Give me your poor, your tired, your huddled masses, your guns. Your government will guarantee you a chicken in every pot and continued safety from all evil-doers.
That is our generation’s task — to make these words, these rights, these values of life and liberty and the pursuit of happiness real for every American. – Pursuant to the laws cheapening life and liberty and polarizing this great nation.
Being true to our founding documents does not require us to agree on every contour of life. – Especially the First Amendment.
It does not mean we all define liberty in exactly the same way or follow the same precise path to happiness. – Certainly not us Alinskyites.
Progress does not compel us to settle centuries-long debates about the role of government for all time, but it does require us to act in our time. – And act with impunity against the will of the people.
For now decisions are upon us and we cannot afford delay. – We must proceed with the worst possible “solutions” to the problems of our time. We cannot take the time to actually read the bills that will impact your lives for decades to come. We must pass them to see what is in them and then move forward and act upon them.
We cannot mistake absolutism for principle, or substitute spectacle for politics, — If you don’t count my refusal to negotiate with Republicans, grandstand, or diss Supreme Court justices to their face.
or treat name-calling as reasoned debate – Even if I do identify my opponents as ENEMIES. I’m justified doing that. You’re not.
We must act, knowing that our work will be imperfect. – I’ve never spoken truer words!
We must act, knowing that today’s victories – Well they are actually ATTACKS on life, liberty, Republicans and successful business owners.
will be only partial and that it will be up to those who stand here in four years and 40 years and 400 years hence to advance the timeless spirit once conferred to us in a spare Philadelphia hall. – And which were just rejected by about 99 percent of the voters from inner Philly.
My fellow Americans, the oath I have sworn before you today, like the one recited by others who serve in this Capitol, was an oath to God – BUT AS MY OWN PARTY DETERMINED LAST SUMMER, IT WILL NOT BE THE GOD MOST AMERICANS WORSHIP. NO. IT WILL BE MINE: ALLAH — and country, not party or faction.
And we must faithfully execute that pledge during the duration of our service. – Allah Akbar! Allah Akbar! Allah Akbar!
But the words I spoke today are not so different from the oath that is taken each time a soldier signs up for duty or an immigrant realizes her dream. My oath is not so different from the pledge we all make to the flag that waves above and that fills our hearts with pride. – The same flag I refuse to look at.
They are the words of citizens and they represent our greatest hope. You and I, as citizens, have the power to set this country’s course. – To set it correctly despite my radical agenda.
You and I, as citizens, have the obligation to shape the debates of our time – Though my friends and I actually know the debate is over.
not only with the votes we cast, but with the voices we lift in defense of our most ancient values and enduring ideals. – Those ancient values and enduring ideals I set into motion four long years ago.
Let us, each of us, now embrace with solemn duty and awesome joy what is our lasting birthright. With common effort and common purpose, with passion and dedication, let us answer the call of history and carry into an uncertain future that precious light of freedom. – The freedom to worship your federal government. Long live the government!
Thank you. MY GOD, NOT YOURS – ALLAH — bless you, and may He forever bless these United States of America. – And the great downsizing project we are today embarked on today, some with us, many not.
By John Fund, National Review Online
Afew things you won’t hear about from the saturation coverage of the Newtown, Conn., school massacre:
Mass shootings are no more common than they have been in past decades, despite the impression given by the media.
In fact, the high point for mass killings in the U.S. was 1929, according to criminologist Grant Duwe of the Minnesota Department of Corrections.
Incidents of mass murder in the U.S. declined from 42 in the 1990s to 26 in the first decade of this century.
The chances of being killed in a mass shooting are about what they are for being struck by lightning.
Until the Newtown horror, the three worst K–12 school shootings ever had taken place in either Britain or Germany.
Almost all of the public-policy discussion about Newtown has focused on a debate over the need for more gun control. In reality, gun control in a country that already has 200 million privately owned firearms is likely to do little to keep weapons out of the hands of criminals. We would be better off debating two taboo subjects — the laws that make it difficult to control people with mental illness and the growing body of evidence that “gun-free” zones, which ban the carrying of firearms by law-abiding individuals, don’t work.
First, the mental-health issue. A lengthy study by Mother Jones magazine found that at least 38 of the 61 mass shooters in the past three decades “displayed signs of mental health problems prior to the killings.” New York Times columnist David Brooks and Cornell Law School professor William Jacobsen have both suggested that the ACLU-inspired laws that make it so difficult to intervene and identify potentially dangerous people should be loosened. “Will we address mental-health and educational-privacy laws, which instill fear of legal liability for reporting potentially violent mentally ill people to law enforcement?” asks Professor Jacobsen. “I doubt it.”
Gun-free zones have been the most popular response to previous mass killings. But many law-enforcement officials say they are actually counterproductive. “Guns are already banned in schools. That is why the shootings happen in schools. A school is a ‘helpless-victim zone,’” says Richard Mack, a former Arizona sheriff. “Preventing any adult at a school from having access to a firearm eliminates any chance the killer can be stopped in time to prevent a rampage,” Jim Kouri, the public-information officer of the National Association of Chiefs of Police, told me earlier this year at the time of the Aurora, Colo., Batman-movie shooting. Indeed, there have been many instances — from the high-school shooting by Luke Woodham in Mississippi, to the New Life Church shooting in Colorado Springs, Colo. — where a killer has been stopped after someone got a gun from a parked car or elsewhere and confronted the shooter.
Economists John Lott and William Landes conducted a groundbreaking study in 1999, and found that a common theme of mass shootings is that they occur in places where guns are banned and killers know everyone will be unarmed, such as shopping malls and schools.
I spoke with Lott after the Newtown shooting, and he confirmed that nothing has changed to alter his findings. He noted that the Aurora shooter, who killed twelve people earlier this year, had a choice of seven movie theaters that were showing the Batman movie he was obsessed with. All were within a 20-minute drive of his home. The Cinemark Theater the killer ultimately chose wasn’t the closest, but it was the only one that posted signs saying it banned concealed handguns carried by law-abiding individuals. All of the other theaters allowed the approximately 4 percent of Colorado adults who have a concealed-handgun permit to enter with their weapons.
“Disarming law-abiding citizens leaves them as sitting ducks,” Lott told me. “A couple hundred people were in the Cinemark Theater when the killer arrived. There is an extremely high probability that one or more of them would have had a legal concealed handgun with him if they had not been banned.”
Lott offers a final damning statistic: “With just one single exception, the attack on congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords in Tucson in 2011, every public shooting since at least 1950 in the U.S. in which more than three people have been killed has taken place where citizens are not allowed to carry guns.”
There is no evidence that private holders of concealed-carry permits (which are either easy to obtain or not even required in more than 40 states) are any more irresponsible with firearms than the police. According to a 2005 to 2007 study by researchers at the University of Wisconsin and Bowling Green State University, police nationwide were convicted of firearms violations at least at a 0.002 percent annual rate. That’s about the same rate as holders of carry permits in the states with “shall issue” laws.
Despite all of this evidence, the magical thinking behind gun-free zones is unlikely to be questioned in the wake of the Newtown killings. Having such zones gives people a false sense of security, and woe to the politician or business owner who now suggests that a “gun-free zone” revert back to what critics would characterize as “a wild, wild West” status. Indeed, shortly after the Cinemark attack in Colorado, the manager of the nearby Northfield Theaters changed its policy and began banning concealed handguns.
In all of the fevered commentary over the Newtown killings, you will hear little discussion of the fact that we may be making our families and neighbors less safe by expanding the places where guns aren’t allowed. But that is precisely what we may be doing. Both criminals and the criminally insane have shown time and time again that those laws are the least of the problems they face as they carry out their evil deeds.
— John Fund is a national-affairs columnist for NRO.