According to Kevin Drum at Mother Jones – a fiercely liberal publication – the real problem with gun control is that most people in favor of stricter laws really don’t care all that much. According to Drum, polls show that most Americans favor background checks. But politicians can’t pass real gun reform legislation because gun-control supporters consider it a low-level issue while Second Amendment supporters consider it one of the most important. Until both sides care equally, he says, the status quo will remain.
For once, Mother Jones is absolutely right.
And while Drum means this as a call-to-action for his readership, imploring them to go out and get fanatical about gun control, it should also serve as a reminder to those of us on the other end of the spectrum. The Second Amendment doesn’t just stand because it is written down in the Bill of Rights. We’ve seen how casually the left can work around the Constitution when they really want to. Our rights stand only when we defend them vigorously and tirelessly, even when it’s difficult or unpopular to do so.
No gun-rights supporter wants to fly the flag for guns the day after a tragedy like the one in Oregon. And in a just world, we wouldn’t have to. The mountain of evidence that says gun control doesn’t work is irrefutable. And even if it wasn’t, the Constitution stands. Attempts to weaken our gun rights would not even surface after these tragedies. Stricter laws would be off the table, clearly infringing on the right to bear arms. And then we could stop fighting these battles and start focusing on what we can really do to make a difference.
But it’s not a just world, and Democrats use each and every one of these tragedies to their political advantage. They don’t fail because they’re incompetent; they fail because conservatives won’t let them succeed. And as unenviable a position as it is to defend guns when the bodies are still warm, it’s a position we must take again and again. Because if Democrats are going to callously use these innocent victims as pawns in their game, we have no choice but to make our stand.
The alternative is to start giving ground away. First, universal background checks. Next, a federal registry. Next, increased restrictions on who can own a gun. Ammo restrictions. Assault rifle bans. Does anyone really believe that these liberals want to stop at “common sense” gun laws?
Liberalism is poison. And you don’t make things better by adding a little bit of poison in with your conservatism any more than you would improve a meal by adding a little bit of strychnine. And if you had to make a scene at Thanksgiving to avoid getting poisoned by the turkey, you wouldn’t hesitate for a second.
With a little encouragement from the media and the president, Americans who sit the fence on gun control may be ready to start caring. We can’t count on their complacency to protect the Bill of Rights. We must be passionate and ready. That killer in Oregon didn’t have the right to take those lives, and he doesn’t have the right to take our freedoms.