|Within Firing Range, Nostrils Flaring|
The Bill of Rights does not provide an amendment on the right to bear arms so that Americans can go hunting. The Second Amendment is about protection, not just for the states from foreign invaders, but also for protection from the federal government. The Supreme Court has ruled by dicta (United States v. Verdugo-Urquidez) and by direct opinion (District of Columbia v. Heller) that the right to bear arms belongs to individuals. Does Congressman Waxman have a problem with the Supreme Court? Does he take offense that the Bill of Rights, as such, protects the rights of individuals, as rights cannot be conferred on anyone else and retain any merit or meaning?
Then again, no one should expect anything less from this liberal progressive than the further encroachment of the state, since he was one of the primary proponents of the argument (followed by prolix legislation) that the federal government can compel individuals to purchase health insurance.
The entire Democratic Congressional Delegation, including Waxman, supports reinstating the ban on assault rifles following the Sandy Hook Elementary School disaster. The citizens of Newtown, Connecticut have already been victimized atrociously. It is unfeeling and unthinkable that our leaders refuse to honor the memory of those murdered children and staff with pause and reflection before launching into another gun control tirade.
New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg callously assumed that this country is suffering from an "epidemic of gun violence".The Aurora, Colorado movie theater shooting remains fresh in the public consciousness, and the terrible Virginia Tech shooting in 2007 still rattles nerves. Yet contrary to media reports, which are clamoring for more gun control, the opposing argument for more concealed carriers deserves more attention. For example, students at Virginia Tech would have preferred more access to firearms so that individual students could have stopped the disgruntled and alienated graduate students' rage-induced massacre.
Despite the emotional backlash of these tragedies, the fault lies more with a media-induced hypersensitivity of exposure and exploitation instead of "an epidemic of gun violence." Now is not the time for our leaders to jump up and down demanding that every gun be confiscated and locked up. Following the just reasoning as suggested by the Virginia Tech survivors, every public school should permit at least one security personnel to have access to a firearm. One of the staff at Sandy Hook could have neutralized Adam Lanza before he wiped out an entire classroom of students.
Research has demonstrated that gun access alone does not lead to more violence. On the other hand, gun control does not diminish gun violence, either. Preventing law-abiding citizens from getting firearms will not stop criminals, thugs, and madmen from getting them and using them. Better to prevent and protect with armed deterrence than hope that the community police force will arrive in time to stop the killing. Instead of restricting guns, our state leaders and national government must permit at least one individual concealed carrier to bring firearms on school campuses.
On another note, Congressman Waxman (like many Democrats and now some Republicans) wants to get firearms off the streets. What about getting our returning and wounded armed forces off the streets, too? With all of the Congressman's letter writing and hand-wringing about guns, especially in the wake of the devastating attack on Sandy Hook Elementary School, Waxman should also demand that our military leaders get our troops out of Afghanistan, then get our returning wounded shelter, provisions, and proper health care at the Brentwood VA.
Instead of "take their guns away", "Dirty Harry" Waxman should show some resilience and mature reflection, leave the Second Amendment alone, and focus on fixing the fiscal cliff, getting our troops out of harms way in Central Asia, and restoring the Brentwood VA to caring and curing our veterans. The individual states must reflect on the proper course of action in the wake of the Sandy Hook tragedy. Hopefully, they will expand the legal limits for concealed carriers so that our public schools and our youth will no longer be easy targets for deranged mass murderers.