L. Neil Smith's
THE LIBERTARIAN ENTERPRISE
Number 333, August 21, 2005
"...far greater threat than Al Qaeda..."
Get Your Hands Up, You Varmint!
Special to TLE
All through the 2000 presidential campaign, the 2002 mid-term elections on into the 2004 elections the millions of gun owners of this country have supported the GOP and George Bush almost exclusively. Some are starting to wonder if they made a mistake.
Since the Bush administration took office, the only reference to gun rights or the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, has been a rather tepid Cabinet support of the rights of individuals to keep and bear arms as defined in the Bill of Rights. I say tepid, because at the same time they made their statements of support, the Attorney General and Solicitor General trumpeted their undying support of all the other myriad gun control laws currently on the books.. Apparently there will be no help for the gun owner from the new Attorney General either as he has stated that he would support a renewal of the totally misnamed "assault weapons" ban.
Even some "RINO" Republicans support gun control, usually under the rubric of "reasonableness." Somehow, people seem to have gotten the idea that it's just fine for rights to be partial or restricted. That the concept of the natural rights of man are made better by restrictions placed upon them by government. How can that be? The only actual "rights" are those possessed by all, without question or equivocation. Anything else is not a right, it is merely a privilege and may be withdrawn at a whim by the same government that grants it.
That's the real problem, the Neo-Liberal Democrats have incremented us into the position of having to fight our way up a mountain of existing legislation aimed at controlling the possession and ownership of firearms to get to their real goal, the wholesale trashing of the Second Amendment. It's nothing new, just the result of decades of Left-wing political activity.
President Bush could have showed his appreciation for the votes of American gun owners with a stroke of his pen by rescinding the Clinton Executive Order banning the importation or production of high capacity magazines. The next logical step would be to ask the GOP congressional leadership for legislation overturning the ridiculous BATF regulation 922 regarding the sale and possession of so-called "assault" weapons. The fact that he allowed the Clinton gun-grab to sunset gives little comfort.
Even that positive moments for gun owners was by default. It took no particular political or moral courage to allow the misbegotten "Violent Crime Control And Law Enforcement Act Of 1994" to simply expire. Of course, there is no way to know how close the President was to renewing it.
The bleatings of the gungrabbers have been proved wrong time and time again and they have even been shown to be blatant liars in their attacks on gun owners and their constant blame of firearms for any and all crime. Prof. John Lott and Dr. Gary Kleck (among others) have shot their arguments full of holes (sorry) yet the Bush Administration still seems terrified of taking them on.
It's almost humorous to listen to the Loony Left any time some state or municipality decides to make firearms ownership or the ability to carry firearms less burdensome. The rhetoric is always the same. They squeal about a return to the "Old West" and declare that great numbers of policemen will be shot and that the streets will run red with blood. Of course, such fairy tales never come to pass, but that doesn't stop the constant whining.
It's hard to convince the ignorant mass of government school educated voters why preserving the 2nd Amendment is so important. After all, for their whole time in school, they've been indoctrinated to believe that the Secind Amendment only applys to state run "militias" or other government agencies and that even if it applies to regular civilians, there is no need for semi-automatic weapons for "hunting" or "target shooting." If they do acknowledge that there could be a defensive purpose for firearms, it would only be for protection against criminals, never to keep government from violating their rights.
Perhaps it's a political calculation by the likes of Karl Rove and company. Maybe they think the gun owners are so frightened by the thought of having the Democrats return to power that they will support Republican candidates at all cost. They are WRONG! Many gun owners have distinctly libertarian leanings and will support libertarian candidates on conscience, others will simply bail out on the system that has let them down and stay away from the polls.
In any case, the Republicans owe a huge debt to American gun owners and the best way to repay it is to restore the Second Amendment to its status as the second most important portion of the Bill of Rights. Many gun owners will accept nothing less.