As feared, many politicians are over reacting to recent mass murders by calling for more restrictions on gun ownership and possession. These laws threaten civil rights and have show no evidence of working better than existing mental incompetency laws. One difference is the number of Republican elected officials running scared, abandoning fact based policy making, and abandoning the Constitution and freedom to show they are “doing something.” Unfortunately, even President Trump has fallen into this trap to deflect criticism.
Doing Nothing is Better than “Just Doing Something”
When a doctor diagnosed me with a serious medical condition many years ago, I asked him what we should be doing about it. He told me that knowing the cause of the condition and the details of it are critical. If the wrong treatment is applied, it would make matters worse.
Ultimately, the diagnosis turned out to be wrong. Fortunately, I received no treatments because they would have seriously hurt or even killed me. My doctor resisted the urge to “do something” because he understood that doing nothing is usually better than doing the wrong thing. It’s more important to do the “right thing” than “do something.”
Gun control advocates, especially RINOs, should learn this valuable lesson.
No Good Policy is Perfectly Safe
Almost every good policy will have risks and some negative side effects. The reason a policy is good in spite of the bad accompanying it is that it is, overall, better than other policies. The right to gun ownership and possession is fundamental to our rights as citizens who engage in self rule. Being citizens instead of subjects means we do not allow government officials to have a monopoly on weapons because private citizens must hold government accountable. While this may result in some deaths and injuries, the overall benefit of preserving freedom and protecting the rights of innocent people will greatly outweigh those costs.
Keep in mind that people are even murdered in prisons which are tightly controlled environments. There is no absolute safety anywhere, and we don’t, as ordinary citizens, want to live like prisoners in our own country.
Imagine if gun grabbers used the same type of logic for traffic control. We could prevent almost all traffic fatalities with a national speed limit of 15 mph. How would that work for everyone? The economic devastation of such regulations would almost certainly end up costing more lives than are saved. But at least traffic deaths would be lower!
Bearing Arms is a Civil Right
Citizens must be able to have weapons to protect their rights and those of others while supporting the rule of law. This is necessary for protecting against government overreach and neglect. Curbing gun ownership by law abiding citizens increased Ku Klux Klan (KKK) violence against blacks during the Civil Rights movement. KKK attacks often happened while the sheriff was conveniently on the other side of the county. Blacks arming themselves and shooting KKK members in self defense reduced the enthusiasm of KKK members for anti-Black violence. Government misconduct also creates violence in other areas where the government withholds police protection.
A recent example is Antifa attacking people in places like Portland, OR. In Charlottsville, VA, police misconduct (apparently ordered by the Democrat mayor), let criminals run rampant in the city and even used crowd control to engineer violence. Recent riots in Baltimore where the police were told by the mayor to not interfere is another example of citizens needing their own means to defend themselves and not depend on the government.
Imagine the outcry if citizens needed to get government approval to make speeches, publish, or peaceably assemble. Our constitution also specifically protects the right to bear arms.
Red Flag Laws are an Excuse for Bad Law Enforcement
Red Flag laws have been demonstrated by gun control advocates to reduce suicides, but not murders. Suicidal tendencies are already a legitimate reason for mental health commitment. Red Flag laws are a poor substitute for law enforcement and mental health professionals doing their jobs preventing suicides.
Even gun control advocates point out that some mass murderers have had police contact and not been charged with crimes until they commit murder. The solution in this case, is to have the police charge people with crimes instead of just showing up and telling them not to do it again (and again and again). Criminals committing violent crimes do not pass background checks when they are prosecuted and properly reported by authorities. Owning or possessing a firearm is already illegal for violent offenders and felons.
The only thing Red Flag laws accomplish is diminishing the rights of lawful gun owners by allowing the government to take short cuts around due process and competent law enforcement.
Ironically, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), an advocate of gun control, was at the forefront of preventing the mentally ill from being committed involuntarily before they committed violent crimes. The ACLU is not actively fighting Red Flag laws which appears to be inconsistent with its stand on involuntarily commitment.
Other Proposed Gun Control Measures Ineffective
Gun grabbers still want bans on firearms that look like assault rifles. A previous ban under Clinton was ineffective at reducing murder rates. Gun controllers proposed magazine capacity laws. Those have more impact on defensive use of weapons than on committing crimes. Criminals can just load more magazines, but defensive use typically relies just on the magazine already in the gun. In short, these proposals being supported by RINOs are either ineffective or counter-productive at protecting innocent lives.
No GOP Benefit for Curtailing Civil Rights of Gun Owners
RINOs should realize that they will get no Democrat votes by advocating for gun control. Nor will they get many Independent votes by abandoning principles and favoring Red Flag laws. They will also lose support in their Republican base. Look at what happened in Colorado last year. Obviously, Republicans lost for a variety of reasons. However, it should be clear embracing Red Flag laws did not help any of them to win.
Tell Public Why Civil Rights for Gun Owners are Good for Everyone
Republicans need to focus on a message of public safety and civil rights. We should discuss the due process dangers of Red Flag laws instead of papering them over. We already have many laws and regulations that need to be better enforced. This should be a focus of Republican communication on this issue.
The fact that there are overwhelmingly more defensive uses of firearms than murders is something that should be presented to the public. Furthermore, the ACLU and leftists should not get a pass on letting people with mental illness go untreated when they are obviously not able to care for themselves while these gun grabbers simultaneously call for gun seizures that violate due process rights.
Republicans need to communicate on this issue. They must show that gun control is a net killer despite the visibility gun violence gets from the media. The many defensive uses of firearms protecting innocent citizens from violent crime rarely get public attention. Media generally don’t like reporting on bad things that were prevented; they focus on bad things that do happen. Republicans should stand for their principles and actively point out that guns SAVE lives and protect liberty.