False Solutions to Gun Violence: In the Rush to Issue Ideas to Stop Mass Shootings, Both Gun Control Groups and Pro-Gun Groups Backed Plans That Can Be Described as Unconstitutional People Control
Jasper, William F., The New American
President Obama ignited a major political conflagration with his January 16 address to the nation regarding the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting that took 26 lives in Connecticut the month before. He proposed what he said are "common-sense steps" that would "prevent gun violence" and "protect our children and our communities from tragic mass shootings."
President Obama's program, entitled Now Is the Time, outlined a series of 23 executive actions he said he would take to "make our schools safer" and "enhance public safety." Predictably, the major focus of his program is aimed at enacting more legislation and implementing more regulation through executive orders that would further restrict the rights of American citizens to keep and bear arms.
And just as predictably, the militant anti-gun lobby was quick to complain that the president's plan didn't go far enough. Gun rights advocates, on the other hand, immediately (and appropriately) denounced the president's program as a blatant attack on the Second Amendment. It would, they pointed out, endanger one of the most important rights enjoyed by law-abiding Americans, while doing nothing to stern the death and mayhem wrought by violent criminals.
However, in their rush to challenge President Obama's infringement of the Second Amendment, many of his opponents have unwittingly fallen into the trap of supporting other aspects of his program, specifically those falling under the labels of "mental health" and "school safety." Some gun rights advocates also endorsed President Obama's appeal for more federal funding of local police. Most appalling in this regard was the response of the National Rifle Association, which decided to practice some one-upsmanship with the president by calling on the federal government to immediately fund a vast new program "to put armed police in every school." These proposals represent a huge assault on other parts of our Constitution, most particularly, the 10th Amendment, which emphatically restates our Republic's key founding principle that the federal government has only those powers specifically enumerated in the Constitution.
Gun rights advocates who think they can preserve the Second Amendment while sacrificing other parts of the Constitution are sadly mistaken: it must be defended in toto or it will be lost in toto.
Among President Obama's many proposals that are drawing the most fire from the pro-gun side of the aisle are banning so-called "military-style assault weapons," banning high-capacity ammunition magazines holding more than 10 rounds, and requiring "criminal background checks for all firearms sales," including between private individuals.
These direct attacks on the Second Amendment have been fully dissected and rebutted (in this magazine and elsewhere) many times, on the basis of constitutionality as well as practical effect. We won't reprise all of those arguments here except to remind the readers of one of the most obvious practical elit.'cts, which is nevertheless one of the most important that needs repeated restating: Our nation is already planted thick with laws (federal, state, and local) prohibiting violent criminal activities and restricting firearms ownership and use. These laws--like those being proposed by President Obama--infringe on the self-defense rights of the law-abiding, while doing little to impede criminals.
Dr. Ignatius Piazza, founder and director of Front Sight Firearms Training Institute in Pahrump, Nevada, is one of the many observers who point out the obvious facts concerning Adam Lanza, the shooter in the tragic Sandy Hook incident, that the anti-gun militants prefer to ignore. "History has proven time and time again that it is dangerous to believe laws to restrict law-abiding citizens from having semi-automatic weapons will reduce violent crime," notes Dr. Piazza. "Just the opposite occurs when you disarm the law abiding. …