Nothing compares to the pain of losing a loved one --- and when the loss is sudden and violent, the agony is compounded. In the wake of a tragedy, especially one involving violent crime, it's understandable to desperately reach out to try and grab hold of anything that makes sense. Finding a place to lay the blame can become a life's work for some and a way to find closure and peace for others.
Often the blame from the media and politicians is swift and concrete --- it's the guns fault. The war cries bellow for 'common sense gun reform' and people from all over demand 'something must be done.'
In this haste to bury the second amendment, in the heat of the moment and with passions peaking, there are many misconceptions when it comes down to 'what must be done.' Here are five of the most important myths that tend to either be overblown or completely fabricated.
Myth #1 | Nobody Is Trying to Take Your Guns
The script is basically written prior to any mass shooting. The left will explode in a chorus championing gun control while the right cries out claims the left wants to confiscate their guns. Mockery from the left ensues and the right is singled out and marginalized Saul Alinksy style. But what is the truth? Progressives truly do want to eliminate as many guns as possible and some even prefer an all out ban.
"'Gun grabber' is a mythical boogeyman. No serious person, including Obama, is even proposing taking away owned guns. #StopFearmongering." --- Toure´, February 16, 2013 (via Twitter)
The truth is Progressives do want to eliminate as many guns as possible and some even prefer an all out ban. In 1995, Diane Feinstein let her true intentions be known on 60 Minutes talking about the assault weapon ban she helped craft.
"If I could've gotten 51 votes in the Senate of the United States for an outright ban, picking up every one of them --- Mr. and Mrs America turn 'em all in --- I would have done it."
Or how about President Obama after the shooting at Umpqua Community College in Oregon.
"We know that other countries, in response to one mass shooting, have been able to craft laws that almost eliminate mass shootings. Friends of ours, allies of ours — Great Britain, Australia, countries like ours. So we know there are ways to prevent it."
What do those countries have in common? An all out ban. The insinuation is clear to see despite the vague language, if they could get away with it, they would love to take a sledgehammer to the second amendment.
Myth #2 | Buying a Gun Is a Piece of Cake
At last check, buying celery does not require a photo ID and background check. Nor does it carry a federal penalty for providing false information.
The left's agenda is on full display when the President makes such a ridiculous claim as this:
“It’s easier for you to buy a handgun and clips than it is for you to buy a fresh vegetable.” --- President Obama
Buying a gun is nowhere near as simple to buy as a bushel of corn or a head of lettuce. Maybe a shady back-alley deal to buy raw milk across state lines from the Amish is a better comparison but even then, this argument is a real head-scratcher.
Despite media depictions, you cannot simply walk into a store, pick up a gun and check out at the self-serve kiosk.
Myth #3 | Gun Violence Is Skyrocketing
This is a lie so oft repeated, even conservatives start to take it as fact. The media is in the ratings business and there isn't a more sexy headline than the epidemic of gun violence and the call to 'do something.' But guess what, this one is simple --- the numbers don't lie.
The truth is, gun homicides are down 49% since 1993.
"Compared with 1993, the peak of U.S. gun homicides, the firearm homicide rate was 49% lower in 2010, and there were fewer deaths, even though the nation’s population grew. The victimization rate for other violent crimes with a firearm—assaults, robberies and sex crimes—was 75% lower in 2011 than in 1993. Violent non-fatal crime victimization overall (with or without a firearm) also is down markedly (72%) over two decades." --- The Pew Research Center
Myth #4 | The 2nd Amendment Only Applies to Muskets
Celebrities are always good for a laugh when it comes to gun control, especially Piers Morgan.
"The 2nd amendment was devised with muskets in mind, not high-powered handguns and assault rifles. Fact." --- Pierce Morgan, December 3, 2012
By this logic, flying cars must be banned as well. How could our laws for terrestrial-bound automobiles accommodate such a dramatic change? Technology is always on the march and thankfully the second amendment does cover it.
A well-regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed. --- Second Amendment
'Shall not be infringed' seems to crystallize things. It's the language game the left plays that really muddies the water. By calling certain guns 'weapons of war' or 'military style' the public is pushed in a direction in contradiction with reality. The most vilified gun in the media is hands down the AR-15, which looks like a machine gun but only fires one bullet at a time. But by calling it an 'assault weapon,' the connotation in the court of public perception is completely skewed.
Semantics aside, the constitution didn't say anywhere Americans have the right to bear muskets. We have the right to bear arms, and that's the bottom line, a line that 'shall not be infringed.'
Myth #5 | It's the Gun's Fault
A gun is just as culpable in any shooting as the keyboard is for writing this article. It's a tool and can be used for good or for evil. Is it the keyboard's fault for cyber bullying? Should a laptop be banned because it wrote a hateful manifesto before a terrorist attack?
What matters is the intent of the user === and this is where the left and right should be able to find common ground can be f. People who have a history of violent crime or mental illness should not be allowed to legally purchase a firearm. This is something most on both sides of the issue can agree on.
To solve the issue, it will require dedicated care to help the mentally ill as well as preventing them from owning a gun. It will require the country as a whole to heal the anger and conflict that drives these violent outbursts. There are no simple answers and there will be plenty of obstacles in the road but there is good cause to keep up the fight.