Former Australian Prime Minister Finds 2A ‘Perplexing’

Former Australian Prime Minister john Howard.

Former Australian Prime Minister john Howard.

Calling the Second Amendment “perplexing,” former Australian Prime Minister John Howard briefly discussed how the United States ought to respond in the wake of the mass killing in Orlando, Florida.

“I would never presume to lecture another country…[but] I hope out of this horrible event that there is that [gun] debate, but I also respect the fact that America is different from Australia,” said Howard, in an interview with CNBC “Squawk Box,” on Tuesday from the annual JPMorgan Global China Summit in Beijing.

“When something like this happens, the most important thing is to call it as it is. Obviously the ready availability of weapons is a big issue, obviously Islamic fanaticism is a big issue…[and] the intolerance of those against different lifestyles.”

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Howard was prime minister during the great Australian gun ban, when in 1996, following the mass killing at Port Arthur, Tasmania, he pushed a nationwide mandatory “buy back” for all automatic and semi-automatic firearms.

Since then, Howard’s template for unilateral civil disarmament has become the gold standard for gun control advocates, including Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton who said at a Town Hall meeting in New Hampshire last year that the Australia model “would be worth considering doing it on the national level, if that could be arranged.”

The sweeping prohibition has been hotly debated over the years. Gun-control advocates argue that it’s led to a reduction in mass shootings. Meanwhile, gun-rights advocates point out that the government has really done nothing but made the country a nation of defenseless victims (see video below).

About the author: S.H. Blannelberry is the News Editor of GunsAmerica.

{ 34 comments… add one }
  • Young patriot August 9, 2018, 1:55 am

    Our constitution prohibits any Americans from being granted any nobility or royal title for a reason WE ARE NOT SUBJECTS WE ARE CITIZENS you old fool and the 2nd amendment assures us that it stays that way that was it’s intent completely to ensure the security of the people and their freedoms from all threats both foreign and domestic. The only reason any Nation finds it perplexing is why would a government let people be able to defend themselves from their oppressive rule. That’s why the United States of America is the greatest country in the world and how it became the most powerful country in the world and has done more for the entire world for freedoms of humanity in it’s short existence than that of all other countries combine and I challenge you to prove otherwise

  • Renny June 21, 2016, 5:55 pm

    He finds our 2A perplexing & I find his (Oz land) fuzzy headed thinking (?) perplexing. Good that he’s there & I’m here in USA

  • Veritas June 18, 2016, 1:52 am

    Howard is responsible for doubling the violent crime rate in Oz. Good going sir. Criminals need to feel safe.

  • Joe McHugh June 17, 2016, 10:07 pm

    It really doesn’t matter all that much if the former Prime Minister of Australia, John Howard, understands our Second Amendment to the Constitution of the United States. After all, It has no bearing on his life as a subject of Australia,

    However, it matters a great deal when American liberals are also “perplexed” by the intent of that amendment. The Second Amendment did not specify why individual Americans needed it. It was not inscribed into the Bill of Rights to enable us to hunt game, or shoot at paper targets. The Founding Fathers wanted the people to have a credible means of resisting a government that might become authoritarian in nature. George Washington said it best: “A free people ought not only to be armed and disciplined, but they should have sufficient arms and ammunition to maintain a status of independence from any who might attempt to abuse them, which would include their own government.”

    Why is it that most politicians and all liberals find the Second Amendment to be puzzling? In truth, these anti-gun people understand and share the same fear of private gun ownership, i.e. you cannot abuse the rights of an armed populace. Fear the government that fears your guns.

  • Dan June 17, 2016, 10:05 pm

    Drop the killings from most of the cities governed by liberals- Ney York , Shitcago etc. and our death rate drops dramatically. Drop all the black on black murders and it even drops more. Of course you can’t do that because then you would be talking about the mostly illegal and stolen firearms. Amazing how the places with the highest level of gun control have the highest violent crime rate. Just check FBI stats as violent crime is the lowest it’s been in modern times. If you really believe that taking guns away from the populace will stop mass shootings or crime you have been living in a bubble.

  • Ger San June 17, 2016, 7:55 pm

    We The People don’t really care if a foreign politician is “perplexed” by our Constitution or anything else that makes America the great place that it is.
    After all, “It’s an American thing – you wouldn’t understand.”

  • Brave Ulysseus June 17, 2016, 7:16 pm

    Australia only exists today as the United States stopped Japan’s campaign to seize it. One of these days China might decide it needs more territory. With a population of 1.3 BILLION, they just changed the national law allowing one child to two. While not traditionally an expansive people, the Chinese Communist Party may decide that change is neccessary. Some guy like Howard would lead the charge to try and buy them off with some territory, but inevitably, bye-bye sovreignty. A disarmed populace is easy pickens. Look at the deal we sold to the Ukraine: give up your heavy weapons and we’ll protect you! До свидания! Ukraine! So don’t expect history to repeat itself. I mean, you can see Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnel wading ashore like MacArthur “Australians! We Have Returned!” Better start learning Mandarin.

  • Alan June 17, 2016, 2:41 pm

    And the difference is Sir, we Americans will NOT have to stand by as our beloved property is seized without reparation and an ugly Law rammed down our throats as happened to our Aussie brethren (subjects.)
    We are Citizens, not Subjects.

  • Ken June 17, 2016, 11:00 am

    Wasn’t Paris a “Gun Free Zone” … refresh my failing memory what happened last November …

  • rt66paul June 17, 2016, 10:55 am

    I am glad he is in Australia then. They did not have the struggle the US had to become a country. Just as we do not pay taxes without representation(most of us, anyway), we do not allow the military to force us to quarter thier soldiers, we also have to right to firearms. These are for protection, food gathering and just fun and practice. Sorry if you don’t understand it, but you do not live here.
    I think that their firearms laws may have a bit to do with how they feel about thier Muslim citizens. From what I see in movies, many muslim kids belong to gangs and have used the American model that the Crips and Bloods “perfected” complete with “rap” sounds(in Arabic and Farsi). This is thier ghettos. No wonder the people could be swayed against guns.
    The discrimination against “thug life” is not being racist. Many people forget that. Most people look at people of color as being like that because of the media. Let the leaders in those communities come out against “thug life”(in all its forms) and maybe the media will report it – I won’t hold my breath.

  • 2War Abn Vet June 17, 2016, 10:51 am

    The entire Bill of Rights is “perplexing” to most nations of the world since no other nation – now or in history – has dared to create anything like it.

    • Javier June 17, 2016, 12:37 pm

      Well said! A paragraph and sentence for eternity. Your quote should be placed near the Constitution Document for all to see.

  • Mr Sparkles June 17, 2016, 10:21 am

    Once again John Howard displays his ignorance of the rule that “it is better to remain quiet and be thought a fool then to open your mouth and remove all doubt.”

    • Batman June 17, 2016, 11:54 am

      Well said! Thumbs up

  • John June 17, 2016, 8:33 am

    Did they call the lever action in the 1800s an Assault rifle? No it was the new standard for rifle such as or ARs and AKs of today.

  • ron June 17, 2016, 8:00 am

    There are a lot of things about a country with actual citizens’ rights that “perplex” some people from countries whose citizens don’t actually have any. They are subjects.

  • Klaus June 17, 2016, 6:17 am

    John Howard is an idiot. He was the prime minister and the leader of the Liberal party but has no understanding of the concept of liberty. He is nothing but a weak minded coward.

  • Ralph June 17, 2016, 5:05 am

    just want to say that no one should ever take our guns but with that being said not sure anyone needs an assault weapon to hunt, with but the rule of law and the second amendment should always stand

    • JerryJ June 17, 2016, 6:49 am

      Hey Ralph,
      I personally know sveral hundred people who own AR-15’s, AKS-47’s etc. BUT, NOT one owns a “ASSAULT WEAPON !!!!! A “ASSAULT WEAPON” is capable of firing multiple rounds with one squeeze of the trigger. Lastly, MOST , “ASSAULT WEAPONS”, i.e. the M-16/M-4, AK-47, etc cost upwards of $20,000+ and are regulated by the FEDERAL GOVERNMENT. Check your nomenclature about ASSAULT WEAPONS,before you starttalking about LEGAL firearms and ASSAULT WEAPONS !!!!
      Vietnam Veteran

      • 81537 June 17, 2016, 7:45 am

        Ralph is a closet lib. He’s making it seem he’s for the 2A so he doesn’t get vilified. He sure doesn’t know guns.

    • Eric June 17, 2016, 7:59 am

      Ralph, the Second Amendment says nothing about hunting. The right to keep and bear arms is not contingent upon sporting use, in fact, the very language of the Second Amendment – “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State” – plainly states that the issue at hand is the right of the people to see to their own security. Deer, bears, and other wildlife don’t factor in.

      • Ken June 17, 2016, 10:54 am

        “right of the people to see to their own security”
        Does that not mean to protect oneself from terrorist ?
        Do you honestly think a whackjob murderer will oblige you when you ask them to please keep the safety on until the cops get there so that they can protect you ?
        Be sure and post your response to facebook as you’re sitting in the next bathroom stall listening to gun fire.

        • Ken June 17, 2016, 11:14 am

          My post was directed at Ralph , placed in the wrong place.

    • Michael June 17, 2016, 12:43 pm

      I have an AR-15, and correct me if I’m wrong, but my Marlin Model 60 seems to function the same way the AR-15 does. So does that make my Model 60 and “assault weapon”? And BTW, at the time I don’t own any weapons. I have several firearms that I enjoy clay and target shooting with. Hopefully none will ever be classified as a weapon, but if ever need be, they will.

    • Joe McHugh June 18, 2016, 7:32 pm

      Ralph, please allow me to enlighten you about what the need is for American citizens to keep and bear “assault weapons”.
      When, not if, the government becomes abusive to the individual freedoms enumerated in the Bill of Rights, the people will need
      “weapons” every bit as formidable as the ones carried by the jack-booted thugs of the tyranny. In 1776 the rebels carried the same flintlock that the troops of King George’s lawful government carried. Now the private individual carries the AR15 which is identical to the M16A2, except for the burst mode of operation. Burst mode operation causes three bullets to fire for each pull of the trigger, an option that is mostly wasteful of the limited ammunition being carried by the soldier.

      In the best of all worlds, the citizens of a free society should own firearms that are superior to those carried by those jack-booted thugs. Guess what? The civilian version of the previous standard “A” M14 rifle, (the M1A rifle), with a variable telescope mounted, is more powerful and able to reach out and touch the bad guy at longer ranges than the M16A2. The M1A rifle can also make the bad guy, hiding behind a cement block wall, lose interest in breathing, something the M16A2 cannot do.

      If worse cones to worst, the approximately 315 million firearms in civilian hands far outnumber the 5 million M16A2s and M4s in the Armed Forces. Ammunition? Approximately 100 billion rounds of ammunition is now stored away for those civilian arms.

      But what are we talking about here? Such a scenario would only happen if the politicians continue to drive us into a bankruptcy that would, in turn, create a chaos where food and energy riots would deteriorate into an all-out upheaval.
      Yeah, like the dollar would ever lose the full faith and value among the people. What was I thinking?

  • DRAINO June 16, 2016, 12:38 pm

    Exactly what I would expect a socialist dictator to say. …….and do. We are the sum of our actions.

  • Slim June 15, 2016, 6:23 pm

    It’s sad to see what’s coming in the next election. I heard today Trump wants to talk to the NRA again. Either way Democrat or Republican I think it’s to late we lost. I’m a NRA member but I can see the writing on the wall. This time it won’t be a assault weapons ban it will be worse. I won’t stop fighting until the end but either way they win. Just remember politicians got that because they were elected.

    • Joe McHugh June 18, 2016, 7:46 pm

      Slim, I am no longer worried about what the politicians think or do regarding firearms. Sadly, I lost my rifle and shotgun in a boating accident recently. I was only able to hang on to my fishing gear. I decided not to replace those firearms because my Democrat governor, Andrew Cuomo, convinced us that guns only cause tragedies in the home and invariably lead to criminal behavior of the gun owners.

      Most of the residents in New York State believe the earnest warnings of Governor Cuomo and have sold off, or otherwise lost our privately owned guns. Dear readers, you believe ME don’t you?

  • dennis mckay June 15, 2016, 2:53 am

    POME: Prisoner of Mother England! They just can’t help themselves.

    • ron June 17, 2016, 8:01 am

      lol!! Is that really what “POME” means?

  • Will Drider June 15, 2016, 12:46 am

    The blood spilled and lives lost due to criminal or terrorist acts will never equal the loss of Rights a Gov may desire to impose on its Citizens. Americans will only take so much from a tyrannical gov before there is physical revolt. It is preceded by the voices of citizens decrying the heavy handed acts of the government and the burden or restriction being imposed. Tea will not tint the harbor’s water when the next revolt starts.

    This Aussie gun grabber is perplexed because he as no emotional understanding of The United States of America. He only thinks that when crimes are commited by a few, freedoms of the law abiding masses must be eliminated.
    I must ask who provides security for the former prime minister and who provides it for the people that pick up his trash? Is it the same level?

    He also must be unaware of the U.S. failed war on drugs. Total ban and criminal penalties abound yet illegal drugs flow like water into the U.S. Does anyone think guns would not be added to the dealers import menu if there was profit in it?

    The former Prime minister also fails to acknowledge his countries crime statistics before and after his ban, what weapons filled the gap, the increase in person on person crimes. He did a ban with a mandatory buy back (pennies on the dollar instead of true cost/value and forced taxpayers to pay the bill. Here we are several years later and the population has more guns (different types) then before the ban. Is this progress?

    He also fails to recognize the global history lesson of peoples being disarmed by governments and what happens to those people after they are defenseless in the face of their tyrannical governments. Only a man who has the ability to maintain he own safety and the capability to fight the imposition of tyrants is free. The rest rely on the whims of government and a roll of the dice if they will be helpless victims.

    The former prime minister should not address or endorse the elimination freedoms he does not comprehend and has never lived with.

    • "jst Sayin" June 17, 2016, 12:37 pm

      The government will never stop until all law abiding citizens guns have be abscounded by the government. If they listened to people like Trunp, would not react to his comments as racist, biggot or other negative comments we may be able to get our country in order. first of all the immgration policy in America is appauling since no one today considers our imigration laws that comes here illegally as “ILLEGAL” We have scorned those that criticise this cultural disaster and the Islamic Terrorists are taking complete advantage of this situtation and problem in America and exsasperatting the situation by their slaughter of innocents in America! Wherei s the justice, and why the hell does it take so long? These are the culprits and this is the root of all our probelmes not the Second Ammencment nor the gun laws We have about 11,000 gun laws! If the Democrats and Liberals ever get their way and take the weapons from American’s we will be an open killing field and no one will be safe ………………………No one , anywhere. We are a hated countryby the Mulims and that is that! tney live amngst us now and granted most are good people1 but they preach hate in thos 22,000 Mosques across our country and now they are 24,000,000 strong! Caliphate oif you did not know i the over thrwoing of all world religions and faiths not just Judeism! it is the complet overthrow oof our country and they are now apporaching us Internally if no one has noticed yet! The next time I here Obummer preach they are a relihuon of ppeace I want to hand him the Koran and showhim where the basis of Islam is Sharea law and the overthrow of the Westrn society as we know it today and this since the 4th Century AD! This will not stop until some terrible ending and all of us our young or old! Is destryed if you believe in Democracy and have some relation to Chritianity and or Judeism! Remember this! It takes approximately 15 to 20 minutes average response time for the police to arrive to a crime scene in most cases unless it is close proximity tot he crime scene. Orando lasted for 3 hours before the shooter was taken down! What does this mean to Americans? if anyone there had a weapon there may have been different resutls! Wake up America! …………………………………..”Jst SAyin”

  • Cam June 14, 2016, 11:38 pm

    I wouldn’t presume to lecture, but by butting in and injection my opinion that what I’m doing.
    So shut your pie hole and butt out you reject from a prison colony.

  • james June 14, 2016, 10:55 pm

    That former prime minister and people like him don’t understand the meaning of individual rights or liberty. They still pay taxes to the Queen of England so that she and her inbred German family can rule over them and live in luxury. That servile toad makes me want to vomit.

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