Warning, click-bait ahead!
You know, I think that’s my reaction to a lot of the crap that’s published by the mainstream media following a tragedy like the mass killing in Orlando that left 50 dead (including the terrorist responsible for the act) and 53 more wounded.
It seems to me that publishers deliberately seek out the most radical writers in their network to have them put together articles that are so polarized and one-sided that they guaranteed to cause a stir, thus attracting readers. The click-bait machine goes into overdrive. If you’re not familiar with “click-bait,” to use a sports world meme, it’s a “hot take” or a reactionary opinion that was formed, often in haste, without any deep thought, empirical analysis or care as to how the world actually works. Translation: it’s inflammatory B.S.
That’s what we have going on with this Rolling Stone article, entitled, “Why It’s Time to Repeal The Second Amendment,” written by an extremist who is not tethered to reality. Care to guess his profession? Yup. You guessed it. He is a professor. Not just any professor, but a Constitutional law professor. Presumably, he would know something about the Second Amendment. Right? Wrong!
What is his argument for dismantling one’s right to keep and bear arms? The usual nonsense, of course. It’s outdated, the founders got it wrong, the AR-15 wasn’t invented when the Constitution was written, more people with guns will mean more violence, yada, yada, yada.
The troubling thing for me is that although I know it’s click-bait, I feel as though I have to respond. I guess I’m a sucker in that respect. Well, sorta. I’ll get paid to engage this ass-clown and his untenable drivel. So, I guess it’s not a total waste of my time.
I’m just going to pluck out a few of his rhetorical nuggets and briefly respond. I say “briefly,” because I don’t want to eat up too much of your time either and belabor what is self-evident to you the reader and the other 100-plus million gun owners in this country. Anyways, here it goes:
In the face of yet another mass shooting, now is the time to acknowledge a profound but obvious truth – the Second Amendment is wrong for this country and needs to be jettisoned. We can do that through a Constitutional amendment. It’s been done before (when the Twenty-First Amendment repealed prohibition in the Eighteenth), and it must be done now.
You know, in the entirety of this professor’s essay the words “government” or “tyranny” or “free state” never come up. The primary purpose of the 2A is to keep government tyranny in check, to keep a free state free. The Second Amendment is the one safeguard we, the people, have from despotism, totalitarianism, monarchism and all of the other ill-fated regimes one might imagine. When we lose the Second Amendment, we lose our ability to prevent what is a necessary evil (government) from metastasizing into a full-fledged tyranny. But this law professor fails to address this essential part of our right to keep and bear arms.
The Second Amendment needs to be repealed because it is outdated, a threat to liberty and a suicide pact. When the Second Amendment was adopted in 1791, there were no weapons remotely like the AR-15 assault rifle and many of the advances of modern weaponry were long from being invented or popularized.
My favorite response to the AR-15s-weren’t-around-during-the-inception-of-the-Constitution argument comes courtesy of Alan Korwin, a GunsAmerica contributor. He writes about the effort to subarm America, which means to ensure that there is a growing disparity between what Joe Public is allowed to own and what the government is allowed to possess.
“We used to have parity with government, and this kept government in check, made America the liberty capital on Earth. We the people were equal with our hired hands. Both sides were in a state of stasis, equilibrium. They had matchlocks, we had matchlocks. They had flintlocks, we had flintlocks. They got cap and ball, we all had it,” writes Korwin. “We grew up together, we were partners in this, developed the field together. Self-contained cartridges, rifled barrels, bolt action, revolvers, semi-auto, improvements to everything, optics, full auto… the story starts to rag out right there.”
Korwin then goes on to talk about the National Firearms Act of 1934 and the subsequent Gun Control Act of 1968 which basically disrupted the historical balance between us and them. Needless to say, at present, the balance is way out of whack. The government has every weapon imaginable at its disposal. And the best of what we have are semiautomatic rifles with a detachable magazine. We’re so outgunned by our government that resistance to a tyrannical uprising would pretty much be futile. But even so, the author of this article asserts we should lose what little protection we have left (In other words, we should just surrender… and hope our future overlords aren’t too sadistic with the cattle prods they use to keep us in line at the government-run gulags and extermination camps).
The liberty of some to own guns cannot take precedence over the liberty of everyone to live their lives free from the risk of being easily murdered. It has for too long, and we must now say no more.
He has it backward. Liberty isn’t created on its own. It’s established and protected by good guys with guns. What allows for one to “live their lives free from being easily murdered” are good guys with guns, e.g. cops, soldiers, concealed carry practitioners. As Col. Jeff Cooper, said in his book, “The Principles of Personal Defense, “Some people prey upon other people. Whether we like it or not, this is one of the facts of life… the peril of physical assault does exist, and it exists everywhere and at all times.”
The question we have to ask the professor is by severely impairing one’s right to self-defense, how do we make that individual safer? More broadly speaking, hHow does society become safer when the predators have arms and everyone else is defenseless?
The gun-rights lobby’s mantra that more people need guns will lead to an obvious result — more people will be killed. We’d be walking down a road in which blood baths are a common occurrence, all because the Second Amendment allows them to be.
The author’s claim is statistically refutable. Over the past two decades, more people have purchased firearms and obtained concealed carry permits than any other time in our nation’s history. Last I checked there were at least 12 million permit holders, the most ever. What’s been the result of this massive movement of civil armament? Crime has gone down. Not up. And that’s all crime, property crime, violent crime the gun-related homicide rate. We’ve become safer as a society. There have been fewer blood baths — not more. And the myth that mass shootings have increased has also been soundly refuted.
In the end, the author’s argument doesn’t hold water. But as I mentioned earlier, that wasn’t the point of it. It wasn’t supposed to be a cogent critique of the Second Amendment. The point of it was to get clicks. To troll the gun community. To get us in a tizzy at a time when Rolling Stone knows we are on high alert. And in my case, hey, it worked. They got me to engage with them. Hopefully, they don’t get you too. It’s not worth it. Don’t waste your time.