From Comment of the Day auteur Chris Marschner comes more perspective on the post Orlando debate, and some of the irresponsible arguments being made. His focus: the distortion caused by fear, and he adds a further rebuttal to the suddenly current “The Second Amendment only applies to muskets” nonsense, for which he has more patience that I. Here is his Comment of the Day on the post, Ethics (and Legal) Dunces: Hillary Clinton And Everyone Else Who Is Suggesting That The Government Should Be Able To Keep Someone From Buying A Gun By Placing Them On A “No-Fly List”
What I have not seen yet is an actual deconstruction of the events that took place well before the self-proclaimed radical set his sights on the Pulse night club. Furthermore, once again one side immediately attributes the root cause of mass shootings to an inanimate object that has the capability to inflict substantial casualties or, as the New York Times editorial(s) puts it, Republican rhetoric that fuels hate toward the LGBT community and other minorities and that the pro-gun lobby is complicit in facilitating these horrific events. It seems to me that such rhetoric fuels the intransigence by the pro gun side to stick to their guns, so to speak.
Whether it’s the NRA and the millions people that make up its membership, or non-gun owners who would not know an automatic weapon from a semi- automatic weapon used by the military both sides are arguing from a state of fear.
At the heart of the problem is how do we combat that fear without sacrificing the very freedoms we want to protect. We aid, abet and give comfort to our enemies when we fight internally over these issues. By dividing us they distract us from their activities; so they win a tactical advantage. By causing us to sacrifice our fundamental freedoms they win some battles. When they force our retreat into isolation they win the war.
Irrespective of what we call it, radical Islamists or simply extremists we do know the name of the organizations that seek to inflict as much death and destruction to the civilians living in western Europe, Israel and the United States. Each has a name and a state of war can be declared on each one.
I am interested to know if an actual state of war is declared by Congress could we have more flexibility in dealing with individuals – citizens and non-citizens alike – who conspire to do harm without sacrificing our cultural values and our Constitution that makes us who we are? Could we use existing espionage laws to level charges against those operatives we find that aid and abet the declared enemy? Could we hold those that profess allegiance to our declared enemy as enemy combatants, i.e. POW’s? Why should we focus on a broad class of people when our focus should be on the few?
As I see it rather than focusing on the methods of destruction we should focus on how do we mitigate the planning and execution of acts of terror. If we interrupt the planning we prevent the execution and resultant damage caused by foreign agents, irrespective of their citizenship, to inflict great damage.
One final thought. For those that argue that the 2nd amendment only envisioned the populace only owing muskets and not semi automatic AR 15’s. I should point out that operative word is arms not muskets. If they meant only muskets they would have said only muskets, but the framers understood that weapons technology would advance hence the general word arms was used.
Furthermore, given that muskets were the state of the art technology at the time and used by the British and Revolutionary armies such an argument could also mean that the framers meant that the civilian population should be entitled to possess equivalent armaments to combat any oppressive government.
19 thoughts on “Comment of the Day: “Ethics (and Legal) Dunces: Hillary Clinton And Everyone Else Who Is Suggesting That The Government Should Be Able To Keep Someone From Buying A Gun By Placing Them On A “No-Fly List”””
I’m more worried about the ones on the fly list buying a gun. Who needs an assault rifle?
Unfortunately, there is absolutely no difference between an ‘assault rifle’ and an auto-loading .30-.06 hunting rifle…EXCEPT that the ‘assault rifle’ looks meaner, has a shorter barrel and for technical reasons, is not as accurate at range. Given a choice between a Remington .30-.06 autoloader, an M-14 (also a .30-.06 autoloader…heavier and with a slower trigger-pull rate called rate-of-fire) an AK-47 (here’s a surprise….30-.06 also, same rate-of-fire but with a shorter barrel making it less accurate), I’d take the Remington. Lighter, easier to handle slightly faster rate of fire and nobody thinks it’s an ‘assault rifle’. An M-16/AR-15 I wouldn’t touch. I’ve never fired one and I have heard horror stories about jamming and tumbling bullets, which equates with lower accuracy.
Shopkeepers during the L.A. riots.
You’re worried about the assortment of soccer moms, little kids and grandmas who make up a large part of the no-fly list buying a gun? Why?
Simply because America is a land of guns and opportunity for someone to use them for an intent to do harm….could be a grandmother….you never know….but you already knew that.
That is why we have police and prosecutors- so those who commit crimes can be held accountable for them.
You know, for all the guns in America, it really isn’t a “land of guns,” and that’s the kind of lazy rhetoric that makes most rational people roll their eyes. I’ve lived in Tennessee for the better part of two years now and have yet to actually see a gun anywhere but on the waist of a police officer. I have no doubt that many people here are quite fond of their guns, but I have yet to encounter one, since I don’t hunt or hang out at shooting ranges.
I live in Virginia, and open carry state, and my experience is the same.
It is a nation and a culture in which guns have been both vital and continue to have important symbolic significance. But as you say, most people who don’t want to never see a gun or hear a gunshot, except those living in the worst urban crime centers.
There was an article in the paper about a woman reporter that purchased an assault weapon in seven minutes! Now that makes me roll my eyes! Amazing our collective fascination with them or is it collective stupidity?
Why is that a bad thing? what did the woman do to demonstrate she should be stopped from buying an assault weapon?
Good news – Assault Rifles are virtually unknown for civilian ownership.
Also, an Assault Rifle wasn’t used in the attack on Pulse.
However, to answer your question, I need an Assault Rifle because the people in power seem very keen on my not having one.
Yes…the perp was using some deadly spitballs. I must have missed that.
Muskets were not really state of the art. Civilians had rifles while the armies stuck to muskets because they were faster to load without the rifled barrel. Also, repeating weapons existed. The Austrians and the Holy Roman Empire used the Girandoni air rifle https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Girandoni_air_rifle
Hillary wants your rifles whether ‘assault rifles’ or regular hunting rifles. Start with putting people on a no fly list and then go after everybody else. I guess you can keep your Brown Bess muskets for all the good they’ll do you.
HIllary just wants to get elected, that’s all she wants.
If I was one who made political decisions on one issue and one issue only….in this instance gun legislation then I would certainly vote Hillary and support the Democratic Party. I will do neither.
If the second amendment applies only to muskets, then I guess freedom of the press only applies to those who have a printing press, right? The founding fathers would never have envisioned radio or television, so that part of the first amendment wouldn’t apply to, say, MS-NBC, right? It’s the only logical conclusion from the “muskets only” analysis.
Gee, I think the only necessary conclusion is that those using it are idiots, and have no legitimate arguments at all.