Texas pioneers with "Come and Take It" flag

We Agree With Former Justice Stevens

Gun Control Advocates Should Call for Repeal of the Second Amendment.

By Jeff Knox

(March 27, 2018) You’ve probably heard about former Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens’ recent editorial in the New York Times.  In it, he lauded the “civic engagement” of the “school children and their supporters” demanding additional gun control laws in marches around the country to “minimize the risk of mass killings.”  He also called on them to expand their demands and not just settle for minor tweaks in existing law, but rather to make their goal the full repeal of the Second Amendment to the Constitution.

We at The Firearms Coalition wholeheartedly agree with him.  We would love to see gun control advocates actually demanding out loud and in so many words what they really want, rather than pretending that they would be satisfied with just a few minor restrictions or some “commonsense reforms.”  It would be refreshing to have them openly admit to their ultimate objectives, without pretending to support the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

From top to bottom, anti-rights groups are a sham.  Even their names are lies, as are their publicly stated goals.  Their names use terms like “for gun safety,” “against gun violence,” and “violence policy,” but they have nothing to do with gun safety or violence prevention.  Their single objective is, and always has been, demonization and criminalization of guns and gun owners.

Years ago, when most of these groups were founded, they were much more open about their intentions.  The National Coalition to Ban Handguns, and Handgun Control, Inc. were pretty clear about what they wanted – a total ban on civilian-owned handguns, with exceptions only for police and specially licensed security guards while on-duty.  Other civilians who wished to own a handgun would be limited to only certain styles, and even those, only in controlled range environments where they would have to store them securely, and never take them off the premises.

But in the late 1970s and early 1980s, the leaders of these groups began to realize that their agendas were not popular with most Americans.  Not only were they stymied in their legislative efforts, being forced to take less than they wanted, but they found that they were unable to garner many members or financial supporters either.  They found themselves relying on funding from wealthy foundations, Hollywood celebrities, and New York and Silicon Valley billionaires. While past leaders had openly described a process of enacting stricter and stricter laws until their goal of a gun-free society was achieved, the new leaders adopted a whole new vocabulary of “gun safety,” “gun-violence prevention,” and “reasonable, commonsense measures to keep our children safe.”

The new approach to gun control, or “gun safety” in the new parlance, included vehement denials that they wanted to ban guns or take guns away from people, while calling for the banning of certain guns, and campaigns to make more and more people “Prohibited Persons” who can’t legally purchase or possess firearms.  In private, every now and then, one of them will quietly admit that total prohibition is still their ultimate objective.

We aren’t surprised that Justice Stevens would support repealing the Second Amendment, but we’re amazed at his candor, and welcome the opportunity to have an open and honest debate about the right to arms.

While many Americans will say that they feel there is a need for some sort of gun control, that support wanes as they learn more about specific proposals.  “Expanded background checks,” meaning a prohibition on private transfers, is a good example. Polls consistently report that over 80% of Americans support the idea, but when these proposals have actually been put to the voters, the results have been much less impressive.  In Washington State, proponents of the measure spent some $14 million dollars pushing their plan, while opponents spent barely $1 million. But even with the lopsided spending on emotional and misleading ads, voters approved the measure by an unimpressive 60%. When a similar initiative was brought to Nevada, the bill passed by less than ½ of 1%, losing in every county except one.  When the initiative was brought to voters in Maine it was rejected. Plans to introduce the initiative in Arizona were shelved as the supporters realized that a win there was very unlikely.

Support for gun control wanes as people know and understand about gun control proposals, the less they support them.  So yes, please gun control advocates, do take Justice Stevens’ advice and drop the pretense.

Declare your real objectives, and focus your attention on repealing the Second Amendment.  Stop avoiding the phrase “gun control” and hiding behind fake terms like “gun safety,” and let’s have an honest, open debate on the real issues.

We think Justice Stevens is among the worst judges to ever wear the robes, but on this particular question, we fully agree with him: It’s time to stop obfuscating and go for the real prize.

So come on Bloomberg, Schumer, Feinstein, and Soros:  Come and take it.  We dare you.