Gun and Constitution

Columnist John Rochford argues that "the left is coming for all firearms," and in doing so, the Democrats will be violating the Constitution. Rochford refers to candidates in the third Democratic debate who discussed their views on gun rights.

In Friday’s third debate for the Democratic nomination for president, gun reform policy took center stage yet again. Not surprisingly, the candidates appealed for the most draconian and tyrannical actions that have yet to be articulated on any issue. Referencing comments made last month to the media, Beto O’Rourke doubled down on his position to institute a mandatory buyback for “assault weapons.” In the debate, O’Rourke fervently declared, “Hell, yes, we're going to take your AR-15, your AK-47. We’re not going to allow it to be used against our fellow Americans anymore.” A wild applause from the crowd ensued.

Less discussed in the media was the moment between Kamala Harris and Joe Biden. Biden supports an assault weapons ban but argued that an executive order for such a ban is not legal. “You can’t do it [an assault weapons ban] by executive order any more than Trump can do things when he says he can do it by executive order,” Biden said. Kamala Harris turned to Biden, smiling widely while laughing, and answered, “Well I mean I would just say hey Joe, instead of saying no we can’t, let's say yes we can!” Biden replied, “Let’s be constitutional, we got [sic] a Constitution.” Though both candidates are wrong in their core belief that the federal government can infringe upon constitutional rights, Harris’s comments are simply naked authoritarianism, an authoritarianism that is protected by the fact that the vicissitudes of political action toward firearms by the new far left Twitter element of the Democratic Party happens to agree.

And certainly, you do not have to agree with the Second Amendment. You can also choose to hate guns, and I know there are many of you out there who do. You can choose to stump for the Second Amendment’s repeal, but that probably will not happen. You can do whatever you want in terms of activism for any given subject, so long as it does not violate an individual’s rights. And that is the kicker, what is being called for in terms of firearm confiscation is violating individual rights. 

What is interesting about mandatory buyback as a policy position — which is simply a euphemism for confiscation — is that for how much this “program” has been discussed lately, there has been no dialogue concerning how to enforce such a measure, which clearly would have to somehow be enforced by an agent of the state, ironically, backed by the force of a firearm. One important fact must be understood. The vast majority of gun owners would say, in the face of a mandatory buyback policy, that “the guns are not for sale.” Gun owners would say, and I believe rightfully, that you can make “criminals” of us, but we will not comply by surrendering the rights given to us legally. In order to get what you want with “gun reform” you on the left must be willing, as the Democratic candidates seems to be, to simply bypass the Constitution, and if something so tyrannical occurs, it will be an ominous time for our country.  If anything in the Constitution does not matter and can be ignored, then nothing in the Constitution truly matters. This cannot be made so.

I have already written about the Democrats and leftists wanting to confiscate legal firearms, and that is certainly now more true than ever. The days of “Obama isn’t trying to take your guns” are over, only because Obama is no longer president. The days of “trying to take your guns” have arrived and been made explicitly clear by the leftist Democratic candidates, and this could certainly be the new normal for the party. In fact, it is so normal, that Diane Feinstein’s 2019 Assault Weapons Ban Bill is still sitting, waiting for the proper amount of support. The bill states in the opening line that, “This bill makes it a crime to knowingly import, sell, manufacture, transfer, or possess a semiautomatic assault weapon (SAW) or large capacity ammunition feeding device.” Notice a semiautomatic assault weapon, not just a rifle, is mentioned. The left is coming for all firearms, not only rifles, and they will be patient in doing so. This legislation clearly violates the Constitution, there is simply no doubt about this fact any longer.

Making criminals out of law-abiding people would be a serious mistake. Violating the Constitution so flagrantly would be a serious mistake. “Gun reform” in how the left desires will not end gun violence, and it is a serious mistake to ignore the real problems and focus on an inanimate object as the basis of your policy. There needs to be real, lucid discussion of solutions, but at the end of the day our rights do not end where your emotions begin.    

Opinion Policies

Opinions expressed in columns and letters are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Daily or organizations with which the author(s) are associated. 

Feedback policy: The Daily encourages discussion but does not guarantee its publication. We reserve the right to edit or reject any letter or online feedback. The goal of the opinion section is to spark civil public discourse by publishing opinions based on facts that articulate an argument. The merit of a piece's ability to further public discourse, among other factors, will be considered when determining if a piece is publication worthy. 

Letter to the Editor Submission Link

(2) comments

Gene Ralno

The democrat approach is deceptive in two ways. First, the term "mandatory buyback" is oxymoronic because in a free enterprise system, buying requires the existence of a willing seller. Use of the term "mandatory" negates the need for a willing seller. Without a willing seller, the process is defined as theft. It demonstrates how utterly absurd democrat rhetoric has become. Not (ahem) buyin' it.

Secondly, democrats justify this colossal gun grab with Article 1, Section 8, Paragraph 3, which says, “…Congress shall have power…To regulate commerce with foreign nations, and among the several states…” Sorry, confiscating legally owned products because they’re unpopular with a political party is not regulating commerce. Felonious at worst, razor thin at best.

All this hoopla is totally unnecessary and whipped up by democrats who desperately seek justification to disarm the American public. Big media rarely put the news in perspective. Even Bloomberg’s 2018 data reveals gun homicides declined seven percent, firearm injuries declined 10 percent, fatal child shootings (under 18) declined 12 percent and unintentional shootings plummeted 21 percent.

Generally, since 1991, the murder rate has fallen by 45 percent and the overall violent crime rate has fallen by 48 percent. And since 1999, the statistical probability of a student being killed in school by a gun has been one in 614,000,000. Further, shooting incidents involving students have been declining since the ’90s.

During that time, citizens were buying a record number of firearms. In 2018, more than 26 million firearms were purchased, a number exceeded only by 27.5 million in 2016 when purchasers were mortified that Hillary might be elected.

Murder rates nationwide, generally by any means, have dropped 52 percent over 20 years and violent crime by 49 percent to a 41-year low. Only about 323 deaths a year are caused by rifles characterized by democrats as assault weapons. In the same year, 496 Americans were killed with hammers and 650 with knives.

Bottom line is half the nation’s murders occur in only 63 counties while the other half are spread across the other 3,081 counties. Said another way, 15 percent had one murder and 54 percent of the nation’s counties had no murders at all. For what it’s worth, 25 percent of all gun crime happens in just four cities, all of which are run by Democrats. Seems the democrats want to change all that. I’d expect conservatives to be smarter.

Steve Gregg

Not many AR-15 owners will sell them to the government for a dime on the dollar. They will bury them in the woods or hide them in the attic before they will turn them in.

New York State has demanded that assault weapons owners register their weapon. Hardly anyone complied. New York has not tried to enforce this law for fear of making thousands of gun owners felons. That’s how it played out there.

When New Zealand abruptly declared assault weapons illegal after the Christchurch massacre only a few dozen turned them in out of a million. That’s New Zealand, which does not have a history of adamant gun ownership nor a Second Amendment.

The chance of Americans peacefully surrendering their weapons to the government is nil.

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.