Kudos to Congressman David Cicilline for taking aim at the gun lobby. Far too many of his colleagues are afraid of getting in the crosshairs of the National Rifle Association (NRA).
The extreme position taken by gun advocates only demeans the seriousness of the Second Amendment. After all, the First Amendment allows free speech, but that doesn’t mean every utterance is protected. Similarly, automatic weapons in the hands of civilians should not be and is not protected by the Constitution. Ban this access.
Other proposals recently made by the congressman also bear examination. While there is no foolproof method of stopping wanna-be killers, nonetheless, sensible regulations can curb violence. For example, there is no rhyme or reason why purchasers of firearms sales at gun shows should be exempt from a background check. Nor should gun dealers who lose their licenses (usually for a very serious reason) be allowed to convert their inventories into a “personal collection” and sell them privately.
Mr. Cicilline correctly supports a bill in Congress that will ban the large capacity ammunition feeding devices. Finally, he has exerted leadership in supporting legislation that would require the bulk purchases whether at one time or ad seriatim of ammunition be registered in a national data bank.
In the most recent hearing involving James Holmes, who allegedly opened fire in a movie theater, the evidence showed that he bought 6,295 rounds of ammunition, body armor and two tear gas canisters, all around a short period of time. Even if authorities didn’t have access to any mental health records, this activity raises a red flag. Real hunters and sportsmen don’t purchase this kind of stuff.
The NRA has foolishly advocated for a cop in every school. There is no way a Glock pistol or .38 carried by Officer Smith would quell an attack with someone wielding an automatic. The fact is that mass killers don’t bring pea-shooters into the killing field.
All of us have heard the arguments why modifications to gun ownership should be verboten. None of the reasons are logical. If I hear one more time that “guns don’t kill people, people kill people,” I think I might be tempted to scream. Folks could kill somebody by knifing him, but a pistol-packing criminal can dispose of quite a few people even from a long distance. There just is no proportionality regarding damage from a simple weapon to an automatic one.
I certainly don’t buy the argument either that the government will come for you if they know you have a gun. Certainly there are more gun owners than the Joe Bidens in the world. The United States Supreme Court has already articulated the parameters of the Second Amendment and the right to bear arms. The “Big Brother is coming after you” rationale doesn’t hold water.
Finally, suggesting that if everybody had a gun then there wouldn’t be any gun violence is right out of a fairy tale book. Humankind has predators of every sort who use their bulk or evil machinations against others.
The time is far past for passing sensible legislation. Let’s get on with it. The NRA needs to come to its senses and stop its rhetorical nonsense. The organization is embarrassing itself. There need to be more congressmen like Mr. Cicilline who show guts by leading the effort.