We all know that billionaire business magnate Michael Bloomberg is a gun-grabbing zealot. He wants to disarm America. Plain and simple In fact, there’s little doubt that a large percentage of his fortune, Forbes estimates he’s worth $33 billion, will be spent on rolling back the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding gun owners.
That’s a lot of money. And it should cause gun owners great concern. But the thing about Bloomberg is that he hasn’t been shy about his disdain for the right of the people to keep and bear arms. Quite the opposite, the former New York City mayor has been very open concerning his antipathy for the your fundamental right to defend yourself, your property and your family from both the criminal element and a tyrannical government.
“If you want to have a gun in your house, I think you’re pretty stupid — particularly if you have kids — but I guess you have a right to do that,” Bloomberg told Rolling Stone magazine in a July 2014 interview.
“You know, to arm everybody and have the Wild West all the time is one of the more nonsensical things you can say… It just does not make any sense. The bottom line is if we had fewer guns, we would have a lot fewer murders,” Bloomberg told Bob Schieffer, host of CBS’s “Face the Nation,” in of July 2012.
Yes, Bloomberg loathes the Second Amendment. That’s not surprising. But what about the other billionaires who are now backing pro-gun control measures? Why are they now pushing for tighter restrictions on gun ownership?
I’m referring to Microsoft co-founders Bill Gates and Paul Allen, former microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer and Seattle-based entrepreneur Nick Hanauer, all of whom contributed hundreds of thousands of dollars, if not millions, to I-594, the universal background check ballot initiative that was passed earlier this month with 60 percent of the vote.
Yes, I know what skeptics will say, basically that there’s a difference between Bloomberg and the rest, and that donating to a ballot initiative requiring criminal background checks on private transfers made over the Internet and at gun shows is not the same as aggressively advocating for legislation banning certain firearms or restricting concealed carry rights for responsible gun owners. Not all gun-control measures are equally nefarious, and Gates, Allen, Ballmer and Hanauer simply put their dollars behind background checks, not bans or gun-grabbing bills seeking to confiscate commonly owned and widely popular firearms. So, what’s the big deal?
I’d counter that argument by pointing out something New Yorker writer and pro-gun control advocate Adam Gopnik once wrote in an article, titled, “A Few Simple Ideas About Gun Control.”
But to repeat the central truth of modern criminology: building low barriers against violent crime has a disproportionate effect in ending it. Make something difficult and you begin to make it impossible. You don’t have to back-engineer every law to cover every past criminal circumstance; you just have to sensibly craft laws to discourage the next one.
Make something difficult and you begin to make it impossible. That’s precisely the intent of UBC legislation. Supporters of UBC want to make owning and transferring firearms incrementally more burdensome, thereby discouraging the public from exercising its 2A rights. What was once a fairly painless transaction is now one that is subject to fees, third party intervention and a larger investment of the most precious resource one has: time.
That’s right. With a universal background check law in place, gun ownership becomes more difficult. Think about it. Instead of simply giving my non-gun owning friend a firearm, he now has to travel to a gun dealer or federal firearms licensee and pay a fee to the dealer so that the dealer could run a background check on him ($40 transfer fee at my local gun shop in Lackawanna, NY). That’s extra time and extra money. And the truth is, it adds up.
Also remember that UBC is the main objective today. Five years from now, when all states have background check laws on the books, what’s their next objective? What’s the next progression to making gun ownership more burdensome and costly? Probably gun registration, because “background checks would work better if every gun owner was registered” or some other B.S. argument. More fees, more time. Pretty soon, owning a firearm becomes a prohibitively expensive and time consuming luxury.
But back to UBC. The deep irony of UBC is that they not only make gun ownership more inconvenient for the law-abiding citizen, but they do nothing to stop criminals from gaining access to guns. By their very nature criminals don’t follow the law, and one more law on the books will not change that. Besides, criminals steal firearms, borrow them from other criminals, use straw purchasers to obtain them or buy them on the black market. Very rarely do criminals go through legal channels to obtain weapons.
So why then are these billionaires supporting background checks? Why are they trying to suppress one’s fundamental right of self-defense?
I don’t know. Maybe they’re like Bloomberg (or George Soros, who I didn’t mention but could have given that he’s another gun-grabber), and they perpetuate an institutional hostility toward guns and want to see a European-style (aka gun-free) America. Or Maybe they were hoodwinked into believing UBCs would make a difference. Quite honestly though, I’m not sure it matters why they are doing it. I think the important thing is to recognize that they’re doing it so we can spread the word to help stop them. If we don’t stop them, if we don’t wake up enough folks and alert them to what’s going on, our right to keep and bear arms will be but a distant memory.