If you read or watch the news (which I attempt not to do; I’ve been on a media fast for about a decade), you probably hear all the negative talk about guns and all the hype about “common sense gun control.” So-called journalists, politicians, and others who are out for their 15 minutes of fame love to throw around terms like “gun violence,” and they love to tug on the heartstrings of Americans. They also love to claim that the NRA is to blame and that its members (including me and many of you reading this) are irresponsible gun lovers who care nothing for innocent people and children who have died. Mass shootings and school shootings are the main fuel for their fire, as these anti-gun groups (and even our Commander in Chief) are quick to blame guns and call for just about any new rule, regulation, restriction, or law.
One of the more recent articles written after the shooting in the Orlando nightclub called Republicans “spineless” and stated, “Following the worst mass shooting in modern American history, 56 senators blocked critical gun safety measures that would have kept guns out of the hands of dangerous, hateful people and saved innocent lives from gun violence.”
One of those measures (which failed on a 47-53 vote) was sponsored by Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), who proposed an amendment based on the terrorist “no-fly” list. This amendment would have enabled the U.S. attorney general to deny the purchase of firearms to someone under “reasonable suspicion” (which is a lesser standard than “probable cause”) of being engaged in terrorism. Of course, the main issue with this is WHO, exactly, is on the no-fly list or, more importantly, WHY might someone be placed on it. (And who is safe from being mistakenly or maliciously added?)
Another Democratic measure was sponsored by Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), who led Senate Democrats in a 15-hour filibuster to force a vote on an amendment that would have expanded the background check system and would have clarified an individual “adjudicated as a mental defective” to be prohibited from purchasing a firearm. The measure also would have, according to them, “closed the gun show loophole by requiring a background check for firearms purchased at gun shows.” This measure was blocked by the 56 “spineless” senators.
I didn’t fall for the lies or the emotionalism in the article, but many people did. And one of my friends responded by saying, “This is why it’s getting harder and harder for me to be a Republican…. I just KNOW that Abe Lincoln, U.S. Grant, Teddy Roosevelt, and Dwight Eisenhower are rolling over in their graves at what the GOP has become!”
Here’s the catch, though: Would any of these “critical gun safety measures” support the responsible, legally armed American? And could they, really, “[keep] guns out of the hands of dangerous, hateful people and [save] innocent lives from gun violence?” The answer to both questions is NO.
While I am 100 percent in favor of education and safety and for keeping firearms out of the hands of evil, I will not take a stand for legislation that intends to limit a right (not a privilege) that is protected by our Constitution. We have seen time and time again that gun laws don’t affect bad guys. Criminals still get their hands on firearms, and they still hurt and murder other people.
I believe that many of the “spineless” Senators blocked measures for “gun safety laws” and “common sense legislation” because they know that these things just end up putting more limitations on good people. If it came down to it, I certainly would comply if I had to wait to purchase a firearm or go through an extended background check. But the bad guys would just find ways to skip all of that. What do they care about doing the right thing or following the rules?
For what it’s worth, on the flip side of this coin, Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) introduced an amendment that would have alerted the attorney general if an individual who was investigated as a known or suspected terrorist (within the previous five years) was seeking to purchase a gun. At that time, the federal government would then be able to delay the purchase (for no more than three business days) and file an emergency petition to block the sale. The individual would be notified of such a proceeding and given the chance to contest the transaction.
This measure, endorsed by the NRA, failed on a 53-47 vote, with Republicans mostly voting in the affirmative and Democrats in the negative. Why did this amendment fail? Democrats criticized it as “being ineffective in preventing dangerous people from obtaining firearms.” I guess this explanation only works when THEY use it.
The bottom line is: Most gun laws don’t keep bad guys from getting guns. And if stricter gun laws are put into place, all we are doing is putting restrictions on our Second Amendment right, which, in turn, may make it easier to put even more restrictions on that right. And that only erodes our freedom. I don’t think Lincoln, Grant, Roosevelt, or Eisenhower would want anyone to support measures that strip away our freedoms and, ultimately, punish law-abiding Americans.
So maybe my friend was right. Perhaps Republicans are rolling over in their graves. But it’s not because of the “spineless” folks protecting our rights. It’s because of the people losing sight of the truth and settling for whatever the mainstream media tells them to believe.