Assault On The 2nd Amendment?

House Speaker Paul Ryan described President Obama’s speech today and his accompanying Executive Order as an “assault on the second Amendment”… and of course a clear case of Executive “over reach”. Why am I disappointed but not surprised?

For sure, it is highly questionable whether reducing the number of ways Federal Background checks can be avoided would subsequently reduce the number mass shootings. But is their any logic in requiring a background check if you purchase a firearm at Cabela’s sport store and not requiring one for sales at gun shows?

The President’s proposal seems hardly an assault on the 2nd Amendment. A responsible Congress would not only support the role of expanded background checks, it would also turn to national registrations lists (to aid law enforcement) and greater funding for mental health clinics (to treat those who are a danger to others especially when armed).

One area which seems to be overlooked in our national (and irrational) gun discussions is what the 2nd Amendment (“A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed”) means.

Gun rights advocates focus on “shall not be infringed”. But two conflicts arise from this perspective.

  • First, it is doubtful the founding fathers intended to give gun rights to some who would in turn use guns to restrict other people’s civil liberties.
  • Second, there is no clarification about what a “well regulated militia” means. Does this include US based Sunni or Shiite groups organizing, acquiring, and training with guns including heavy duty ones?

It should be worrisome to see how many GOP leading members (for example, Speaker Ryan and most of the Presidential primary candidates) have spoken out today denouncing President Obama’s Executive Order. These individuals either already have or seek to attain extremely important government positions. Where is their sense of what it takes to govern a free and open society?

Donald Trump was one of the candidates who said he would overturn President Obama’s Executive Order if elected. Trump continues to lead the GOP field by a large margin (37% to second place of 18%). MSNBC reported segmentation of the 37%.  The network found that 67% of Trump’s supporters believed President Obama was a Muslim and had not been born in America. Hmmm.

For GOP members who are truly worried about the Country’s direction (and not for personal wealth reasons), these poll numbers should be a wake up call. It is past the time when political rhetoric should be encouraged that divides the country into extremes. There are wide grounds for bi-partisan legislation reigning unlimited gun sales.

Our leaders must consider the horrifically higher number of US mass shootings compared to the rest of the world, and then, think ahead to what it will be like when “a well regulated (and armed) militia” chooses to put an exclamation point under its extreme views.

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Explore posts in the same categories: 2016 Presidential election, Barack Obama, congress, Democratic Party, GOP, guns, NRA, Politics, Republican Party, Uncategorized

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