The tragic deaths of so many last weekend have awakened, again, the arguments we have heard for all of my adult life. Again, we have all the false issues, the misleading statements, half truths and lies that define our view of guns and weapons of war. Again the vested interests and those in powerful positions are offering up half measures, platitudes and legislation that is bound to be ineffective. Again, a large number of our citizens are being led down a path that leads to higher profits for the gun industry, more money for politicians and guarantees blood on the streets. Doing the same thing over and over again expecting a different result is the definition of insanity. We must be insane.
Insane and in a deep hole we are. Like being stuck in any deep hole the first thing we need to do is stop digging. The most effective step that can be taken is to just ban military style assault weapons and the high capacity magazines that go with them. Outlaw them and use a buy back program to take them off the street. It is obvious that a lot of folks would like to save access to these weapons by passing “Red Flag” laws and expanding background checks; however, it is equally obvious that these options will fail. And worse will continue the erosion of individual rights and freedoms guaranteed by our constitution.
Those who support reg flag laws have to think through the ultimate impact of these laws. How will they be used? My fear is they will be used to patrol the streets looking for “unstable or dangerous” people. It would be just like America to find ourselves with “Mental Health” police charged with protecting us from the mentally ill. How else do these laws get enforced otherwise? Do you really want to be able to call the mental health police on your neighbor because you think he may be unstable and has a gun in the house? Do you really want the mental health police to respond, confiscate his gun maybe take him the mental health clinic? You see, I think not. This approach will fail.
Expanded background checks are a good tool; however, who really thinks that weapons will not change hands without a check? There are some 15 million AR15’s on the street in this country and most of them will be sold at one time or the other to a neighbor, co-worker or relative and no background checks will be done. Who enforces this? No, mass killings with AR15’s will continue.
Further, as the hysteria picks up, there are serious people proposing enabling the FBI to use its Foreign surveillance tools on the American people. Are we ready to have the FBI listen in on our phone calls, read our Facebook, Twitter etc. posts in an effort to prevent someone shooting up a Walmart? To save the ability of a person to own an AR15? It is a bad trade off and one I don’t think Americans want.
Of course the other actions that are coming are equally troubling. Corporate America will act to provide a “safe” shopping environment. There will be armed guards at malls where you have to go through a metal detector to get in. There will be armed guards patrolling the parking lots and directing traffic. Maybe we will be safer but our freedoms will be restricted. For what? Your AR15 ownership?
Look at the expanded police power. Look at the reduction in our rights and freedoms. Look at the coming restraints. Look at what is happening today where folks run from a motorcycle backfire. We are all becoming captives of the gun culture. We must begin to find a way out. We must stop digging.
Banning weapons of war and large magazines would do a lot to stop the massacres we are seeing today. It would leave the 2nd Amendment is place. Folks would still have their shotguns, rifles and pistols. It would allow us to feel safer and slow the need to attack our freedoms and rights.
There is an opportunity available to us right now and we must summon the will to move forward. Call or write your Senator or Congressman and tell them to ban assault weapons and large magazines. Keep calling them until they do something. And don’t let them muddy the waters with half measures and ineffective laws.