The pro-gun guest the other night was right in line with a lot of what I heard on Conservative radio. There was a lot of talk about gun rights. It went on-and-on. And Coast To Coast AM has that Conservative basis anyway (possibly because of Premiere Radio Networks outside of sports talk), such a discussion wouldn't surprise me one bit.
I'm not against any kind of gun ownership, but rather the intent and responsibility of the gun owners themselves. But, after tuning into Conservative talk radio in the past two days, to hear the reaction to the fallout, I've noted a sudden change in pro-gun rationale.
For the longest time, all I heard the pro-gun, Conservative people (including hosts, guests and callers) ramble on about how The Second Amendment was adopted for citizens to protect themselves from a tyrannical government. Does that mean our own government?
But in the past two days, they're "singing a different tune." Now, it's all about protection from murderers, thugs, muggers, burglars, and assorted criminals. It appears as if the call to arms for protection against the "tyrannical government" is being shelved. For now.
Modern Conservatism: All About "The American Revolution" Negates The American Civil War
The focus of the modern Conservative and Tea Party Movement is "The Founding Fathers" and "The American Revolution." At that time, colonials had guns to rebel against a tyrannical rule under England, a foreign power. The Second Amendment, at the time of its drafting, may have had more to do with maintaining a militia in the event the United States was conquered and ruled again by a tyrannical government.
Remember, England never accepted the United States Of America's independence in the end. Perhaps its rulers felt the colonials would be too dumb to rule themselves, and would crawl back to the English government to be ruled again. In a short time. It must have stuck in England's craw when that didn't happen. So England and returned a few decades later, attempting to "take back what it believed was rightfully theirs." And I'm sure "The Founding Fathers" considered that possibility.
The modern Conservative Movement mentions nothing about the American Civil War. Ironic. It was basically an armed insurrection by a Confederation of southern states that felt the United States government had indeed become tyrannical. Justifying themselves by what they described as a fight for state rights, the Confederate states went as far as to succeed from the Union, and declare themselves an independent nation.
And how soon people forget the magnitude and damage of that war, and how we as Americans once harmed each other and destroyed on such a grand scale. How soon we forget.
I sense the same type of friction these days that mirrors the American Civil War closer, I feel, than the American Revolution. Yet, I hear nothing from either side these days about that trying time in our nation's history. Especially from the Conservatives.
An Armed Citizenry Not Always A Flawless Solution
I hear a lot of generalizations and "what if scenarios" from the gun-toting sector. I've been through dangerous, life-threatening situations in which I didn't need a firearm to survive. Remember the shooter the other day was taken down and disarmed without a firearm deployed against him. I would be concerned if some gun-toting person opened fire, and possibly harmed bystanders in some crossfire. It happens.
Even Mr. Noory told that story the other night of encountering what he considered a "strange person" in some public place. And how Mr. Noory was basically convinced that man "was going to do something." But he didn't. He didn't. Now, if such a person as Mr. Noory was in that situation, would they feel compelled to draw on -- and possibly fire upon -- such a person he or she "felt" was going to do "something." Consider that.
Learning and understanding hand-to-hand engaging can be just as effective as possessing a firearm. Your body is the only weapon that you always have. It goes everywhere that you go. It's the only weapon that can't be turned on yourself.
There's added dangers to both concealed and open-carry firearm methods. Especially when an assailant or some criminal doesn't have a gun -- but the firearm holder does. Think of open carry, for example. It takes little to ambush or blindside such a carrier, and then become armed that way. The same is true for concealed carriers as well.
Unless these gun carriers plan on having their weapons out at the ready at all times, and point them at every person they encounter, they'll never really be safe "out there." As I understood the tragedy the other day, even if the victims were armed at the time would have mattered not in stopping the attack. Was the assailant going to announce his intentions and challenge them to a fair gunfight? Hardly.
I know there are instances where firearms have indeed saved people from such criminal elements. But there's cases when firearms are used by supposed law-abiding persons who lacked any criminal record.
Listen to the news sometimes. Hear of cases of domestic disturbances, homicides or even suicides in which assailants employed firearms -- notably handguns. Why did a number of them have those guns in the first place? For protection. Something many would applaud.
Stricter Guns Laws May Be Adopted, But Such Can Also Be Bypassed
There's a lot of ironic to gun-sales laws. Sure, someone with a criminal record or verified history of a dangerous mental illness may not be able to get a gun that way. But what about private sales? How conscious of this fact are private sellers. Look in the local newspaper sometime. There they are.
When I had guns years ago, I always ran my own background check on prospective buyers through law enforcement before I visited with them. I required a person's name and address beforehand. And those who seemed hesitant after I explained my procedure -- and social responsibility -- may have had a reason to be hesitant. I always required a valid ID when meeting the prospective buyer, to verify my background check. And all my gun buyers passed the background check, so at least I held a clear conscious. What they did with those firearms after the sale was their responsibility.
Even if a person passes a background check, I would never sell them any ammunition with the firearm. Ever. Now, I had no way of knowing if someone thought ahead about what they were buying and "brought their own," but since they showed a clean record that was a chance I had to take.
A further measure of any Federal gun laws against dealers should address regulation of private sales as well. There's loopholes and workarounds people can exploit. But it's usually only when something bad happens that such measures are employed.