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Why the GOP is getting the issue of gun control all wrong

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Though it is not entirely true, many American's view the Republican party as protectors of the second amendment, and Democrats as traitors. But historically speaking, it was the Democratic party that fought arduously to protect it. And they still do today. The point being, guns manufactured today are VERY different from ones used in the 1700's, thus putting question on what would be considered appropriate for public access. In addition, the country had endured war of an unimaginable magnitude in the height of the 18th century, causing hysteria and protectionism, so it is not surprising of the broad context of the amendment.

Fast forward to 2018 and you have a war of words between backers of the amendment, and those who believe it should be scaled back. Though both sides have valid arguments, statistics show violence caused by firearms have spiked over the last two decades, though they are beginning to hold steady. Look at Chicago, a city crippled by thousands of gun related deaths since the beginning of the 21st century; yet they are under-reported in the news.

So, back to the headline, why are the GOP getting the issue of gun control all wrong? Interpretation and money. As we read the second amendment, we are reminded that the right to bear arms shall not be "infringed." Obviously, the sentence means that the right to bear arms shall not be taken away in any regard. But, there are multiple issues with this sentence when further examining it. The definition of infringement is to limit something, or to encroach upon. In no way does it say that the government cannot "regulate" it. The Democrats are not "limiting" your rights to own a firearm, they are trying to make us a safer country by ensuring harmful individuals do not obtain one, as well as to restrict civilian use of assault weapons. It passed before in the Clinton administration, why not attempt it again?

Unfortunately, the second reason the GOP has it all wrong on guns is quite somber... they are so desperate to accept the NRA's endorsement and money, that they are essentially paid to support their agenda in Congress. A CNN town hall after the shooting at a Florida high school featured Florida Sens. Bill Nelson and Marco Rubio. As Nelson responded in a manor that was more moderate, Mr. Rubio shifted his positions to align with the NRA. He knows that they will withdraw their support with one wrong word, and that endorsement obviously means more to him than to the safety of his own constituents.

So to conclude, the Democratic party's position on guns has not changed, it has evolved to fit the needs and safety of Americans today, which is to enforce existing laws, limit access to the mentally ill, hold universal background checks, and most importantly modernize the interpretation in which we perceive guns today.
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  1. Kal'Stang's Avatar
    Few things about your post here.

    1: You make the claim that guns today are much different today than they were in the 1700's. That is correct. But it is also irrelevant. Many things are very different today than they were in the 1700's. Speech for instance is no longer limited to local areas. News may be gotten from far more sources than your local news paper. We now have devices that can talk to people across 3000+ miles instantaneously. Indeed we can talk to people on the other side of the world. We have technology that can pretty much guarantee the conviction of a person that murdered another. Yet the Rights that are involved in those various instances are still just as important now as they were in the 1700's. Would you suggest limiting free speech to only be heard locally like it was in the 1700's? How about making it to where only local news stations may report in their given towns like it was in the 1700's? Or do away with juries altogether due to the technology that practically guaruntee's a conviction now a days for someone that is truly guilty? Guns Rights are no different just because the guns today are more effective. The 2nd amendment is about self defense. What defense is there when a person with a musket is confronted with a 9mm pistol? I know, you're not talking about only arming people with muskets. But by supporting limiting The People to only certain types of guns while the government can use any weapon they please then you are essentially doing just that. As I said, the 2nd Amendment is about self defense, from everyone, including the government if they become tyrannical.

    2: On your point about "infringement" and "regulate". No one minds regulations when it actually accomplishes what that regulation is meant to accomplish. IE: Effective regulation. However there is a problem when regulation goes to far. That's when it starts infringing. Especially when that regulation does not in fact do what is claimed it will do. Our current background check system is a failure at what it is claimed it does. Many try to make the claim that it fails because not everyone is subject to background checks. IE: private sellers. The problem with that claim is that when examined the background checks system that we have shows us that there are many failures with in the BGC system. For instance the failure rate of LEO's to add people to the BGC system. Even our Military fails to do this as evidenced by the Sutherland Springs, Texas shooting. Another failure is to criminally charge those that fail background checks. (it's illegal to attempt to buy a gun when you have a felony record). In 2012 of the 80k people that failed their background checks only 44 were prosecuted. Leaving them to try another avenue to buy a gun. Most of the recent mass shootings have happened even after a person passed a background check. So obviously it is a regulation which does nothing to help stop people intent on using a gun illegally. So why do we have it?

    3: What you seem to forget about NRA donations is that they don't JUST donate money to people for the heck of it. They donate to people who are not gun control advocates to begin with. They don't just go up to a politician and say "we'll give you money if you support us". Such would be bribery to begin with and is illegal. What they do is identify politicians that are already against gun control and THEN donate money to them. Mr. Rubio did not "shift his positions". That implies that he was bribed. Again, illegal. And also not what happened.

    4: It is already illegal for the mentally ill to have guns. Therefore their access to guns is already restricted.

    5: What do you mean by "modernize the interpretation in which we perceive guns today"? I may agree with that depending on what you mean by it. I'll put for my own perception on it and see if you agree with it. If I were to say that I would mean that we need to teach people that guns are just a tool. No more dangerous than the person holding it just like any other tool. Which is absolute true. Teach people to respect guns while around them. Just like they would respect a chainsaw when around it. Teach people to not be afraid of the guns. Be afraid of the person wielding it in an illegal or stupid manner. Just like you would be afraid of a person wielding a chainsaw in an illegal or stupid manner.
  2. bbert1994's Avatar
    I appreciate your response to my post. Let me follow up on a few things:

    If Thomas Jefferson or James Madison went to the streets of Chicago today, I am sure they would see that something needs to be done. We are suffering an epidemic that has seen thousands of deaths each year across America. I am a supporter of the right to own a firearm. I was raised in a family that hunts every year, and own several firearms, but there are some on the market today that are LEGAL in the US that should not be in the hands of civilians.

    Most importantly, to answer #5, I mean that we should not view guns as we have in the past. We cannot ignore the statistics. American's need to understand the dangers in which a firearm can pose on society while also learning what responsible ownership of a gun consists of.
  3. Kal'Stang's Avatar
    I agree that we are suffering an epidemic. So lets fix that. Instead of making laws that target lawful gun owners and inanimate objects though how about we actually make laws that target the reason behind all the shootings and suicides? For instance if someone attempts to commit suicide with Drano you're not going to go out and attempt to make laws that restrict non-suicidal peoples use of Drano are you? No, you're going to be asking questions like "does this person have a chemical imbalance that causes extreme depression?" and "Do we have the drugs available to equalize that chemical imbalance?" Or you'd be asking other, similar questions. All related to the person that attempted to commit suicide. So why treat guns differently?

    Same goes for people that murder others either singly or in mass shootings. Questions like "Is it possible that this person had a mental imbalance as well? If so how do we fix it? How do we spot future such cases so that we might be able to get them help before they flip out?" Or if it has nothing to do with a mental illness such as assault/theft etc etc then perhaps the questions that need to be asked is "what would solve the conditions that led to such crime? Better education? Better ways to get job opportunities? Better ways to make money?"

    Why are we focusing our laws on inanimate objects when we should be focusing them on the root problems? Health, education, economy etc etc are all the main factors for any crime. Pretty much every crime that happens can be traced to one of those. I would be that if Jefferson or Madison went to the streets of Chicago they'd be asking the same questions that I am asking. They'd be looking for the root problems. Not looking at inanimate objects.


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