Friday, March 21, 2008

DC v Heller

Disclaimer: I haven't thoroughly reviewed the information in the title link. It looked like a pretty comprehensive overview of the case and its history, so I included it for anyone interested in a little background info.

I decided that I have to blog about this case. I don't know exactly where this post is going to go, but I have a lot of thoughts rattling around, and I need to get some of them into cyberspace.

I think this is an exciting possibility. For the first time in my lifetime (indeed in my parents' and for the second time in my grandparents' lifetimes) we have a chance to see real change affected in the arena of gun control. What change could occur? More on that later. First, let's have a look at where things are at right now, in 2008.

We have a lot of gun control on the books. The first thing you hear any gun control advocate screaming is that our "streets" are flooded with guns and that buying a gun is easier than buying a book. It's hogwash of course. Until we have complete gun bans on the books with confiscation police going door-to-door, the moonbats will keep screaming about how easy it is to get your hands on a gun.

The truth is that it's not easy to get a gun (at least not legally). We have federal laws regulating who may sell guns, from where they may sell them, how old you must be to own/buy a gun, what types of firearms you may own, and how you may ship, transport, or sell them. Then there are countless state laws, which vary widely in their degree. Some states have effectual bans in place on certain types of firearms, while others don't even require a permit to carry a concealed handgun (*gasp*).

The next thing you hear the confiscation advocates screaming about (that is, if you haven't lost your hearing from their shrill pitch) is that anyone can buy an "assault rifle," walk into a mall and mow down eight million people in a half a second.

Next you'll hear them crying and dancing in the blood of every child who had died as the victim of gang violence or in a gun accident. After that comes the pants-wetting that accompanies any debate over concealed carry or self-defense.

I could engage each of these arguments, but it's pointless. They are all without merit or supporting facts, but that's beside the point.

The bottom line is this: The intent of the founding fathers was that a well armed population would have the power to hold its own government in check.

The Second Amendment has nothing to do with crime. It has nothing to do with hunting or recreation. It doesn't even have anything to do with self-defense, at least not self-defense against street thugs. It has everything to do with preventing tyranny.

How often have you heard the antis complain that the Second Amendment is no longer relevant because weapons technology has changed? They make inane comparisons between flintlock muskets and AK-47s, and bed-wettingly whine that one couldn't kill his fellow man nearly as efficiently in 1792 as he can now. Someone needs to point out to such folk that governments could not kill their citizens nearly as efficiently back then either. That is the point. Since 1792, governments have killed 170 MILLION of their own citizens. Anyone who contests that "This is 200 years ago, and the government isn't going to take your other freedoms" has their head in the sand and hasn't studied history very much, if at all. Governments do this all the time in this present age. The Founders recognized that this would always be the natural course of governments, and so they set up the Constitution to specifically prevent such abuses. The Second Amendment is more relevant than it has ever been.

So what weaponry should common, ordinary citizens be able to buy? Well, as uncomfortable as it makes so many people, the truth is that any gun that's good at killing is good at guaranteeing liberty. Anything the military has (and especially anything the police have) the citizenry should have. Sawed-off shotguns? Yes. Silencers? Why not? Machine guns? Hell yes.

...which brings me to the "what could change?" question.

The answer: hopefully everything. All the major gun control laws we have on the books are unconstitutional abominations that have crept their way into existence little by little. Bit by bit, we've given ground, and now we might be able to take it back.

I don't realistically expect to see the National Firearms Act of 1934 overturned, nor the Gun Control Act of 1968. Those are the two big ones, of course. NFA makes it a crime to own several types of easily-demonized weapons (most notably machine guns) unless you pay an exorbitant tax and register yourself like a sex offender. GCA establishes a licensing system for dealers and gives us the groundwork for the BATFE, perhaps the most Gestapo-like "law" enforcement agency the United States has ever had the displeasure to endure.

I could post an entire book on the thug tactics employed by BATFE, but I won't, mainly because others already have. If you're genuinely interested in learning more about these worst of the secret police, check out:.

At the best, we can hope for an overturning of these laws and an abolition of the ATF.

At the worst, a "collective rights" ruling that will legitimize Nazi-like gun control. (And if you think I'm gratuitously throwing the word "Nazi" around for emotional appeal, you should do a little research on the Third Reich and how exactly they gained unresisted control over Germany.)

Most realistically, I predict a ruling that will affirm the individual right, but with a caveat that "some reasonable restrictions" must be applied. Of course, a right that is subject to restriction is no right at all, but rather a privilege granted by a government that views its citizens as subjects.