In a recent opinion piece published in my local paper on October 2nd titled “Gun control has become taboo issue” by Joseph Cotto, he details how the political winds have shifted with regard to the subject while dividing defenders of the 2nd Amendment in to two arbitrary groups based on nothing more than how much each group agrees with him.  Cotto’s entire opinion piece can be read in PDF here.

Joseph Catto

Joseph Catto

Cotto opens his piece by claiming that “Not many people are talking about gun control these days.” That statement is correct so long as we’re discussing politicians and discount the hysterics of groups like Mom’s Demand Action, Mayors Against Illegal Guns and Everytown for Gun Safety.  All of which are faux grass-roots groups created by billionaire statist Michael Bloomberg.  Discounting those groups, I would agree, not many politicians are pushing unconstitutional gun control laws.  Catto’s asserted cause of this reluctance to press the subject is also likely accurate. After the Colorado state legislature passed a pointless law making the mere possession of a magazine which holds more than 15 rounds a crime, as well as criminalizing the private sale or transfer of a firearm without state permission, the citizens of that state decided to forcefully retire two sitting state senators via a recall election in 2013; a vote which Bloomberg threw $350,000 at to support the civilian disarmament lobby.

I also agree with Catto’s assertion that “[w]hile these were just state races, and the electorate in each was surely skewed toward highly motivated voters — in this case, anti-gun control advocates — a message was sent loud and clear on the national stage.” In deed it was Mr. Catto, politicians, more than anything, fear losing power and will avoid touching anything that could cause we the people to strip them of that power.

Catto’s underlying true beliefs on the subject begin to peak through when he writes “[i]t seems likely that fewer legislatures will take up firearm safety bills in the future, especially in states where recalls are constitutional.” Did you notice the misuse of the phrase “firearm safety”? If you haven’t been paying attention to the debate in the past few years, “firearm safety” has become the dishonest code words used by the civilian disarmament lobby in place of “gun control”.  A majority of the public now understands that gun control is in practice nothing more than people control. When the average Joe hears the phrase “firearm safety” they do not associate it with gun control, but that is exactly what they mean.

For example, what the anti-gun Colorado legislators passed into law was in no way related to firearm safety, it was just the same gun control nonsense that’s been around since the 80’s when Sarah Brady living high on the hog after her husband was almost killed.  The Colorado law stated that after July 1, 2013, the citizens of the state would be stripped of their right to purchase or possess a magazine holding more than 15 rounds.  Standard capacity magazines –which people like Cotto would incorrectly label Large Capacity – that were obtained prior to July 1, 2013 could be kept.

Catto considers that law to be a “Gun Safety” law, but what is it exactly about a 15 round magazine that makes it safe while the standard capacity mag that holds 30 rounds is somehow dangerous? If the 30 round magazine is so dangerous, why grandfather those in circulation?  Why are police still allowed to use such a dangerous item and why allow people from out-of-state to bring them into the state for personal use?  The answer is quite clear, limiting magazine capacity isn’t about safety at all; that’s a lie.  It is about CONTROL and a means to slowly erode the rights of the people.

All of this begs a simple question: What is gun control’s purpose? Or, more specifically, who is the intended target of gun control policies? Perhaps this is the basest, yet most prescient, question of all: Who should be allowed to own a firearm?

No sir, Mr. Catto, the question has never been “Who should be allowed to own a firearm?” because the premise assumes that the right to keep and bear arms is not a right but a privilege handed down by the good graces of government.  We don’t ask who should be allowed to speak in public or publish a books?  The question is “Who should be stripped of their right to own a firearm?” And the answer to that question has been settled law for some time and why laws stripping violent felons of their right to own firearms have been on the books for decades.

It seems obvious that early American senators and congressmen secured the right to bear arms for the purpose of self-defense or hunting game.

I’m sorry Mr. Catto, that is not only wrong but shows either a willful ignorance of history or a dishonest revision of it.  The 2nd Amendment was not secured for self-defense or hunting game. Its purpose was clearly explained by those early American legislators.  Richard Henry Lee (Senator for the State of Virginia) wrote, “To preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body of the people always possess arms, and be taught alike, especially when young, how to use them.”

Joseph Story, a Congressman from the State of Massachusetts, wrote in his Commentaries on the Constitution (1833) that, “The right of the citizens to keep and bear arms has justly been considered, as the palladium of the liberties of a republic; since it offers a strong moral check against the usurpation and arbitrary power of rulers; and will generally, even if these are successful in the first instance, enable the people to resist and triumph over them.”  No sir, the 2nd Amendment was most assuredly not secured merely for self-defense and hunting, but rather is a last resort check on government tyranny.

Cotto goes on to argue that “[The Founders] did not intend to give Constitutional protections to violent criminals. Therefore, it’s not in the spirit of the Second Amendment to say anybody should be given a gun for any purpose.” Well obviously they did not intent that but his claim that Second Amendment advocates want everyone — regardless of their criminal history — to possess a firearm for any purpose, is a straw man argument.

Decent people should not have their rights infringed on account of a troublesome minority. Surely, most of those who want to purchase a gun through the legal process are concerned about protecting human life or catching a few pheasants, among other wildlife.

This is where Cotto begins to set up his false dichotomy by dividing Second Amendment advocates into two arbitrary categories; people like Cotto who mistakenly believe gun rights concern shooting a mugger or birds, and what he pejoratively labels Second Amendment fundamentalist, which he imagines to be NRA loving lunatic red necks who, he claims, think that murderers and rapist should be armed. I’m not even exaggerating, he actually writes, “The Second Amendment fundamentalists, on the other hand, make no distinction between concerned citizens and homicidal maniacs. They believe that there should be no regulations of any kind insofar as the sale of firearms is concerned.”

Mr. Cotto conveniently fails to cite even one example of anyone actually stating such nonsense. The fact is his so-called “fundamentalists” are merely conjured up fantasies to make his statist views appear rational by comparison. He continues building up his straw man with the following.

Their ideology is rooted not in the concept of self-defense, but self-identity. Radical anti-gun control activists evaluate their own personal worth on the basis of firearm ownership.

This is how Mr. Cotto mentally dismisses anyone who dares attack his faith that gun-control laws actually affect criminals — who by definition do not obey laws.  I imagine anyone that provides evidence or rational arguments demonstrating the gun-control measures he advocates have and would fail are mentally placed in the “fundamentalist” column as a means to avoid defending his unfounded gun-control beliefs.

Their ideology is rooted not in the concept of self-defense, but self-identity. Radical anti-gun control activists evaluate their own personal worth on the basis of firearm ownership.

No Mr. Cotto, we so-called “fundamentalist” do not evaluate our own personal worth on the basis of firearms ownership. We begin with the premise that all innocent human life has worth and from that we derive the right to keep and bear arms as a natural right in order to defend that worth against those who might decide to exploit or take someone’s life.

For the radicals, owning a gun is not a precautionary measure, but a status symbol. This is why they tend to lose their marbles when any mention of firearm control is made. If practical restrictions are passed into law, then their race to own the biggest, most dangerous gun will be halted. Perish the thought.

I guess anyone who dares acquire a firearm of which Joseph Cotto disapprove is just a radical.  Why can it not be both a a status symbol and precautionary measure.  For example, I own multiple firearms for different reasons, precautionary measure being among them.  But I also own them as a status symbol of my liberty and living in a nation of the people, by the people, and for the people.  I also consider each firearm I own to be a symbolic middle finger to people like Mr. Cotto, who mendaciously demonize people for daring to own something they personally think others either should not possess or should beg permission from the State before acquiring.

The people losing their marbles are entirely on the side of gun-control. Only those who have had a complete break with reality would argue for the sort of nonsense being pushed by gun-control advocates like Mr. Cotto.  Sarah Brady, Feinstein, Boxer, Schumer, Bloomberg, and the other elitist gun-control power brokers are now having their asses handed to them by the very people whose rights they seek to slowly strip away.  They are the ones who lose their marbles when their agendas are thwarted.

That last sentence is a clear example of Mr. Catto’s ignorance regarding firearms, “biggest” does equal most dangerous.  Any firearm, regardless of size, is dangerous when in the hands of someone who has no clue how to operate it; someone like Mr. Catto for example.

Hopefully, more Americans will come to recognize that the Second Amendment is not to be trampled upon, yet ought to be interpreted in a reasonable fashion.

It should be pointed out to Mr. Catto that words have meanings and because “reasonable” means based on good sense, that term is not applicable to the types of laws he advocates. The laws favored by people like Mr. Catto do in fact trample the 2nd Amendment, but he and his comrades are blind to that fact due to their mistaken beliefs concerning the purpose of the right to keep and bear arms.

While the political debate over gun control is unlikely to improve during the foreseeable future, if enough people search for common ground and ignore extremist voices, then a new generation of legislators might come about.

The debate over gun control has been improving for over 10 years. Every year another State repeals laws that once criminalized the right to bear arms and the myths and lies spread by gun-control advocates are debunked, the debate improves. Every time a federal court strikes down an anti-gun law, the debate improves.  It is my sincere hope that the gun control debate improves to the point that the real extremist — those who assert stripping people of their rights is a reasonable — are seen for the irrational Statist they truly are.

by | Categories: Musing | Tagged: , , | Comments Off on Response to Joseph Cotto’s “Gun control has become taboo issue”

ONE – Their Title Is Unimaginative & Misleading

Their official name is Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, a title so long that it begs for an acronym, but since M-D-A-G-S-A sounds like a Klingon curse word they are stuck with the monstrosity. Ironically the group was founded by a former communications executive named Shannon Watts; one might think that someone with that sort of expertise would have realized a thirteen syllable title isn’t very communicative.  And since when does “gun sense” equate to handing over more of our rights to the government?

No matter how you say it, the title is misleading in that you might assume the “gun sense” they are advocating is actually sensible and rational.  You see anti-gun groups have learned over the past few decades that being open about their real goal of erasing the right to keep and bear arms doesn’t work in a country where the majority of people rightfully distrust their government and value their personal liberties.  Unlike Watts, everyone is not wealthy enough to hire armed guards, affluent enough to live in gated communities, nor politically connected enough to have priority response from law enforcement.

The first stated goal of MDAGSA is to require background checks for all gun and ammunition purchases.  That is to say that if I want to sell or trade my Glock pistol to my friend for his AR-15 rifle I will first have to seek permission from the Federal or State government.  This is not sensible, nor will it stop violent criminals from obtaining either of these items.  By mandating that everyone seek the permission of the State to engage in otherwise legal commerce, this proposal actually accomplishes their unstated goal of transforming a constitutionally protected right into a state granted privilege.

TWO – They Formed as an Emotional Response to Sandy Hook

According to its founder, Moms Demand Action was founded December 15, 2012, EXACTLY one day after the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, ostensibly because Watts did not have the metaphorical balls to tell her then 12-year-old son what had happened.  Was it formed along with a cadre of fellow concerned mothers who decided to study criminal statistics involving firearms, pouring over the research from numerous studies concerning the issue before finally deciding to found an organization to lobby government and advocate for their solutions in the media?  No of course not….

It was founded by one very affluent white woman living in Zionsville, Indiana who claims her son was psychologically afflicted by other shootings in the news and was shocked and appalled by the deaths of children belonging to other affluent parents.  With the median income for a household in Zionsville at $108,420 and a median value of owner-occupied housing units in the town at $355,800; it is a heavily gated community of approximately 14,160 people (as of 2010 Census), 94% of which is also White.  With a police response time of 2 ~ 3 minutes is it any wonder why Shannon Watts doesn’t see any merit in keeping a firearm in the home and/or carrying one on her person?  I guess all the poor brown-skinned children that died before Sandy Hook didn’t bother her son as much and weren’t important enough to motivate Mrs. Watts to get off her privileged white ass.

Are the proposals advocated by Shannon Watts new and original? Of course they’re not, they are the same list of bullshit pseudo-solutions that every other civilian disarmament group is pushing under the false mantra of ‘common sense’.  As is typical among gun control advocates, it doesn’t matter that none of the measures proposed by Watts are based on facts or data showing they will actually have any effect on violent crime. What matters to her is that her intent is noble and that this public display of good intent fulfills her emotional desire to feel good about herself.  Lets not forget that it also looks nice on her résumé along side the other multimillion dollar companies and government bodies for whom she has worked.  I’m sure she also draws a decent income as the head of her very own “non-profit” organization, people like Watts do not give up lucrative careers to chase political pipe dreams for free.

THREE – Their Proposals would not have stopped Adam Lanza

Had the groups proposals been law at the time, it would not have stopped Adam Lanza from carrying out his murderous rampage.  Having totally broken from reality, Adam murdered his own mother and then stole her rifle and handgun, both of which she had undergone a background check to purchase.  The proposed ban on modern rifles which they misidentify as ‘assault weapons’ and standard capacity ammunition magazines which hold more than 10 rounds would have made no difference either.  First, there is no functional difference between rifles erroneously labeled ‘assault weapons’ and other semi-automatic rifles which fire the same cartridge, the difference is purely cosmetic.  Second, ignoring the millions of standard capacity magazines in circulation, the time it takes to switch out three 10 round magazines over a single 30 round is perhaps a few seconds, no difference at all when your victims are defenseless children. The groups proposed laws are not sensible; they are, every one of them, senseless steaming piles of feel-good bullshit.  The only thing that stopped Lanza that day was a bullet to his head. The shame is that it was from his own pistol and on his own terms thanks to the existing feel-good ‘gun free school’ laws that prohibited someone working at the school from doing it prior to him making it to those classrooms full of children.

FOUR – They Censor their YouTube Channel

If you look at the group’s YouTube channel and click on any of the 65 videos you will find that both the ratings and comments section have been disabled.  Why?  The NRA doesn’t censor their videos.  I think that they fear their bullshit being called out and having to rationally defend their proposals.  The group has also been known to demand Facebook remove links to stories exposing the founders personal background.

Among the videos, the channel contains videos entitled FACES OF COURAGE which feature parents whose children were shot and killed. There is never any explanation given of how the group’s proposals would have changed anything for these grieving parents, merely sad music played over a tragic story with the non-sequitur argument that because these parents support the group’s proposals, the proposals must have merit.  Logically this is known as an ‘appeal to emotion’ and although it is irrational it can be effective in the short-term and with people who refuse to think for themselves.

FIVE – They Dishonestly Claimed To Be Victims of Intimidation

When the members of Open Carry Texas rallied in front of a meeting of four members of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America (imagine Moe, Larry, and Curly, then add Shemp and make them women), many bricks were publicly shat in response.  Using a misleading photograph, Watts and the mainstream media went big on the story.  As you’d expect, Mother-in-Chief Shannon Watts milked the story, casting herself and her Moms as victims of . . . wait for it . . . terrorism. Never forget that the civilian disarmament industry wants to cast gun rights advocates as criminals, thugs and psychopaths and they will lie through their teeth to do it.

Watts and her partners in the media began plastering a photo (above) which appears to show a group of armed individuals posed in an intimidating manner outside the restaurant where the mothers were holding their anti-gun quartet. Using this misleading photo some of the groups members even appeared in shadow to be interviewed claiming they felt their life was in danger.  Oh those poor souls being stalked and threatened by those evil gun owners. But then the truth of the misleading photo came to light when the photos taken face on revealed that there was no intimidation, it was merely a group photo to document the counter protest.

Was the group’s founder called out for her dishonest statements on national news channels?   Of course not, because liberals feel morally justified in lying their ass off in the name of advancing liberal causes like gun control.

The hardest part is only picking five….

by | Categories: Five Foolish Facts | Tagged: , , , , | Comments Off on Five Foolish Facts about Moms Demand Action

The core belief and assumption of all gun grabbers is that if the government could somehow confiscated all guns in America, legal and illegal, that murders would go down.  This belief is fundamentally flawed as they do not or refuse to grasp the difference between criminal law and prohibitionist law nor the principal of enforceability.

We already know that laws against murder don’t stop psychotic murderers, murderers who are confident in their chances of not being found, or murderers who simply don’t care for the risk (of which these three categories make up a vast majority of all first degree homicide cases).  We simply have these as law as a means of quarantine and rehabilitation (although our system is rather ineffective at that second part).  We get murderers off the street so they can’t murder anymore and hope, with false confidence, that being locked up for 25 years makes them learn their lesson.

The issue is how this translates to certain firearm restrictions.  It isn’t the gun that is getting punished, it’s the person.  Does violating a zoning ordinance make a potential mass killer fear the legal repercussions of going into a gun free zone?  No.  Was the prohibition against creating destructive devices something that gave Timothy McVeigh any moral pause about the illegality of blowing up a federal building?  No.

Can Dianne Feinstein point to one bombing that didn’t happen because bombs are illegal?  No.

Can Chuck Schumer point to one shooting that didn’t happen thanks to a gun free zone?  No.

How can gun grabbers then claim things that banning “ghost guns” is going to prevent homicide with home made guns (something of which I don’t think is a statistical reality)?  They can’t.

How can anyone claim things like banning magazines of a certain size will mean shooters will necessarily reload at the 15, I mean 10, I mean 7, I mean 5 round limit?  Am I supposed to think that the shooter at Aurora, a person who created a bomb so elaborate it took federal agents all day to disarm, couldn’t grasp basic welding and a screwdriver to turn the materials of multiple 10 round magazines into a single +25 round magazine?  They are not elaborate, they’re basically metal pez dispensers.

Laws have different enforceability.

I go 55 on the road because the flow of traffic is that limit, correlating to an established common standard, and because of the reality of getting pulled over for speeding; and I want to conserve gas.  It’s not exactly a nefarious thing to go 70 instead, it’s not even considered a criminal act. Many good people have had instances of speeding.

It’s a gross false equivalence to say that what keeps people from making bombs, from making illegal modifications to guns, and from commuting mass homicide is the fact they are illegal and that people with suicidal tendencies are worried the police may try to arrest them after they act.

by | Categories: Musing | Tagged: , , , | Comments Off on Gun Control: Criminal Law vs. Prohibitionist Law