Bruce W. Krafft: No Compromise on Gun Rights

Fair warning, I am completely unreasonable on the subject of civil rights. I take exception to this passage in Ben Shotzberger’s analysis of President Obama’s editorial on gun control: “If—and that’s a big IF—there was a true effort to bring NICS up to speed and get it ‘working,’ wouldn’t that actually be progress in the right direction for all involved?” No, NO, NO! The instant you accept the antis’ premise that “some people just shouldn’t have guns” you have lost.

You have lost the “gun show loophole” argument: Hey, if some people shouldn’t have guns then why don’t we require checks on all sales (ignoring the fact that the way the proposed laws are written it is the gun show organizers who would go to prison if so much as a single private sale took place or even was attempted).

You have lost the Lautenberg amendment argument (which ignores the fact that ‘domestic violence’ restraining orders are a common tool in many divorces).

You have lost the drug user argument (anyone who has ever used illegal drugs shouldn’t be allowed to have guns (and I know very few people of my generation who did not at least try weed in their youth).

You have lost the mental health argument (last figures I saw showed that almost 60% of the population over 40 had, at one time or another, been on anti-depressants).

If you grant that there is anyone who should be a prohibited person, the camel’s nose is in the tent. I am with David Codrea on this when he says that a person who can’t be trusted with a gun can’t be trusted without a custodian.

As for felons . . . did you know that if you have ever used a Su-Sat pill dispenser for your prescriptions you are a felon? If you pick up a feather on a walk in the woods and it is from a protected bird you are a felon? If you are going bowling with a friend and he asks you to swing by a buddy’s house so he can get some cash, and that cash is from a drug transaction you are a felon? If you have ever dumped oil or solvents down a drain, or even just dumped them in a corner of your backyard you are a felon?

Never give the antis so much as a single inch. Make them fight for every new restriction and make them fight to keep existing restrictions. Never give up. Never give in.

 

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About Robert Farago

Robert Farago is the Publisher of The Truth About Guns (TTAG). He started the site to explore the ethics, morality, business, politics, culture, technology, practice, strategy, dangers and fun of guns.

24 Responses to Bruce W. Krafft: No Compromise on Gun Rights

  1. avatarBLAMMO says:

    Yeah, the ubiquitous “they” say that mental illness no longer has the stigma it used to. But if you ever plan to apply for a pistol license, don’t ever seek treatment for an emotional disorder, no matter how badly you think you need it.

    I mean, you’d have to be crazy.

  2. avatarTTACer says:

    +1

    Don’t forget, if you were a vet who spoke to a mental health professional one time because you had trouble sleeping, you are now a “prohibited person.”

  3. avatarTim says:

    From Obama’s article “I’m willing to bet that responsible, law-abiding gun owners agree that we should be able to keep an irresponsible, law-breaking few….”

    Anytime I see the standard tactic from the left, such as, “even you would agree” or “we can all agree” (or some derivative thereof), my BS flag goes up… It is a standard tactic that is used all to frequently to give themselves a majority perspective…

    • avatarTTACer says:

      Anytime I see the standard tactic from the left, such as, “even you would agree” or “we can all agree” (or some derivative thereof), my BS flag goes up

      It’s just like the straw-man favored by that same author “Some people say…” or “Some might say…” You just know some bs is about to follow.

    • avatarAnon says:

      This is an unfortunately-common variation on the good, old “poisoning the well” logical fallacy – my personal favorite is, “No reasonable person would believe…” obviously creating the implication that if you do believe it, you’re unreasonable. In this particular case it’s further compounded by a healthy sprinkling of an appeal to popularity, but the desired result remains the same.

  4. avatarRyan Finn says:

    “The instant you accept the antis’ premise that “some people just shouldn’t have guns” you have lost.”

    There are people in this fair country that shouldn’t have access to guns, that’s a cold hard fact, not a made up Brady campaign statistic. Since when did common sense become a premise of the left wing? To say that acceptance of this statement is somehow an admission of defeat in the gun control debate is highly naïve.

    I get where Bruce is coming from. We are afforded rights as citizens; therefore these rights apply to everyone. But, you have to remember that within our government we have imposed limits on how far the rights expressed in the Constitution actually go. Why do we do this? Because, for the most part, we are not a nation of morons. We recognize that convicted felons and paranoid schizophrenics with access to legal firearms is a bad choice.

    I understand that people unwittingly commit “harmless” felonies; I understand that laws can be twisted to be used for bad and I understand that seeking counseling for a problem should not immediately negate your freedoms. I get it, the system is flawed. But a few flaws in the system shouldn’t immediately mean that common sense takes a back seat to freedom.

  5. avatarBen Shotzberger says:

    I agree that NICS is busted .. horribly. I hate NICS. I hate the IDEA of NICS. But, reality is, it’s likely here to stay. As it exists now, it just gives ammo (pun intended) to those on the extremes of the argument. If the data is incomplete and jumbled so damn bad that restricted persons are slipping through the cracks, it arms the “anti’s.” If the data is so damned false that is results in flags on random citizens that have no criminal background, it arms the (insert name of the other side? [not quite sure what to call them]). Either way, people are pissed.

    I agree with most all of your points, and I actually feel like your argument supports the intent behind my piece. I agree that simply being a “felon” is a very stupid measure for defining firearms ownership restriction – you provide some very good supporting data and examples here. I also agree that mental health “counseling” should not be an automatic disqualifier.

    All of these are examples I see of how the current system is broken. Things clearly wrong with it that should be fixed if this system is here to stay (which, let’s be realistic .. it is). Especially on the issue of the 2nd, there’s a snowball’s chance that it’d ever be thrown out [even if it should be]). Fix those issues. Make it work as intended (is that even possible?).

    Now, the one point I disagree completely with you on. I most definitely DO believe that there are “some people who shouldn’t be allowed to own guns.” Criminally Insane? – Sorry, no guns for you. Violent Offender? – Sorry, no guns for you. I do not believe that your right to bear arms is unconditional.

    My underlying issue is that if we are going to have a system such as the NICS (and we will, it’s not going anywhere no matter how loud we scream of its flaws and injustices), it needs to work as intended. I’m not granting “an inch” on anything that hasn’t already been granted; simply saying that they created a system, and created it broken. Fix the busted parts of the broken system.

    I firmly believe that this issue, along with just about every single issue facing the good ‘ole US-of-A, is domintated by a vocal minority (on either side of the fence). The silent majority rests in the middle, and quite frankly usually has things they’ve deemed (personally) more important to worry about.

    Lunchtime..

    • avatarBen Shotzberger says:

      Point of clarification –

      “All of these are examples I see of how the current system is broken. Things clearly wrong with it that should be fixed if this system is here to stay (which, let’s be realistic .. it is). Especially on the issue of the 2nd, there’s NOT a snowball’s chance that it’d (NICS) ever be thrown out [even if it should be]). Fix those issues. Make it work as intended (is that even possible?).”

      - This is all meant to refer to NICS being here to stay, and not being thrown out. .. In now way was referring to the 2nd being modified etc.

  6. Robert, You have really gone over to the wild side, man.

    “The instant you accept the antis’ premise that “some people just shouldn’t have guns” you have lost.”

    I think it’s since you’ve been carrying that silly gun around with you wherever you go. You used to be more reasonable than that. Is it now your opinion that NO ONE should be probibited from owning a gun, no one!!???

    • avatarBen Shotzberger says:

      I’m pretty sure the post was posted by Robert on behalf of Mr. Bruce W. Kraft. My reading of it (the title) is that the sentiments you refer to are Mr. Craft’s statements, not Rob’s.

      • avatarRabbi says:

        Mike never let’s facts stand in his way. He “feels” that Robert made the statement so it must be true.

    • Indeed Robert did but post my rant.

      mikeb asks: “Is it now your opinion that NO ONE should be probibited from owning a gun, no one!!???

      In a word . . . Ayup. I am willing to concede that people who are serving time in prison or in a lock-down psych ward should not be permittted to possess guns, but once they are released . . . absolutely.

      Or are you going to prevent them from buying gasoline (used in the Happyland fire which left 87 dead) or fertilizer and Diesel fuel (purportedly used in the OK City bombing which left 168 dead)? As I said in my post, if they are a threat, why aren’t they still locked up?

      It used to be that the primary purpose of laws was to punish bad acts (which does serve to prevent them (“the only reason some people are alive is because murder is illegal” as the bumper sticker says) but that is not the primary goal behind these laws), but during the 60′s and 70′s we somehow got the idea that we could use the law to prevent bad acts. The vast majority of gun laws are exactly that sort of mala prohibita edicts. A felon carrying a gun in the trunk of his car is not actually harming anyone, owning a magazine that holds more than 10 rounds doesn’t hurt a soul, loading a weapon with hollow-points does not injure anoyone, yet all of these acts are unlawful in some jurisdiction. And when these laws don’t work, the answer is not “well it was supposed to stop XYZ, but it didn’t, so we should scrap the law,” instead it is argued that just one more restriction, or closure of some ‘loophole’, will make it work. And when the law still fails to prevent XYZ, again we hear that it just needs to be ‘tightened’ or ‘strengthened’. And so on ad infinitum.

      Strict gun laws in the UK did not prevent the Hungerford massacre (16 dead) in 1987. Still stricter gun laws passed in the wake of Hungerford did not prevent the Dunblane massacre (16 dead) in 1996. And the even stricter gun laws (so strict that the UK’s Olympic pistol team has to practice outside the country) passed in response to Dunblane did not prevent the Cumbria massacre (12 dead) of 2010.

      • Oops. I just thought of one category of people who should not have guns (which actually falls under the ‘can’t be trusted without a custodian’ exemption, but I figured I would spike mikeb’s guns): people without the mental capacity to learn and follow the rules of gun safety. So children under about age 7, and those with a mental age below about 7, should not be allowed to carry guns. I choose 7 because that is how old my grandfather was when he was first allowed out hunting alone with a single shot .410.

      • avatarAntiCitizenOne says:

        Perhaps you should add to “released,” “and their rights restored”

  7. avatarJames says:

    Personally, I am of the persuasion the even felons should not be denied their Second Amendment rights (or any other rights, for that matter).

    Once a person has been tried, convicted by a jury of his/her peers, sentenced and released, as the old saying goes, that person has paid their debt to society. There’s no valid reason that someone convicted of marijuana possession in 1982 and released from prison in mid 1983 should not be allowed to own a firearm in 2011.

    Until the early 90′s, Michigan still had a law on the books that when a person was released from prison – and upon that person’s request – the State was to provide them with a horse and a rifle.

    • I wonder if I could get my state to give me a horse and a rifle. My wife would love a horse, and I’d love a rifle. It’s a win-win. I’m just not willing to break the law and go to jail first.

    • avatarChaunman2010 says:

      The reasons these ‘gun control’ laws are passed really has nothing to do with the average felon, and what I mean by that is this: The average felon is locked up for a harmless offense…statistics in this country indicate our jails and prisons are on the brink of overcrowding …they also indicate the majority of citizens locked up inside them are in some way involved with marijuana, which translates into non violent, recreational enthusiats being incarcerated and stripped of their freedoms. This is done for one specific purpose…to divide and conquer the classes…if they can use assinine laws like this to keep the majority of the population from becoming legally armed they have no fear of a civil uprising! There’s no way an unarmed society can stand up and defend itself. There’s no way an unarmed society can defeat an army governed by the same people elected to fight for our rights! If people are stripped of their right to bear arms because they bought, sold, or smoked marijuana, its because they don’t want pot smokers to have a say in what is being done with and to this country! This republic we live in is slowly leaning towards a new world dictatorship! This country desperately needs a second civil war and a secession of all states, allowing true freedom to evolve, and commerce to succeed! Are there violent criminals who shouldn’t be allowed to own a gun??? During peace time ‘yes’…if you’re convicted of killing another person without a self defense motive, or in the defense of another life…or if you use a gun to commit an act of violence, then yes, regardless of your debt to society being paid, you should be kept on the “I can’t control my behavior don’t give me a gun” list during peace time…however during times of war I think these people should be drafted, given a gun of choice with as much ammo as they can carry and then you airdrop them behind enemy lines and let them do what they do best! We, as a society, have forgotten so much of what our forefathers intended for this country, and why they came here to settle…it was because of taxation without representation, among other things, like life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness…all of which have become nothing more than words memorized for an elementary school play! If we don’t stand up and reclaim our country and what is an inherent right of every man born, then we allow ourselves to be misrepresented and governed by our keepers desires, and deserve what we get, because apparently that’s what we are willing to accept!

  8. avatarRabbi says:

    I am of the strong opinion that violent felons should loose all rights permanently. Serving a sentence in jail does not in any way pay a debt to society and is not even close to paying their debt to their victims.

    They deprived their victims of their most important rights, their rights to life and to safety. Therefore, a violent felon should be relieved of his rights as well.

    A murderer should never see the light of day but through the bars of prison.

    • avatarChaunman2010 says:

      This also poses a problem…a violent criminal convicted of a heinous crime, shouldn’t see the light of day thru prison bars at all…if you kill someone by any method deemed not in accordance with self defense, the defense of another, or the rules of engagement during war, the sentence should fit the crime…death, at the hands of your victim’s remaining family members by whatever method they so choose, and it should be broadcast on a real ‘reality’ show…nationally on all channels, so anybody and everybody who has a tv on at the time has to view it…commercial free and uninterrupted, as well as unedited…you let a grieving father bludgeon the person convicted of raping and killing his daughter, with a meat cleaver on prime time, and make everybody watch, I bet crime rates in this country would drop overnight, not to mention curing the problem with border jumping illegal aliens, nobody wants to come to a country where violence is treated and cured with an equally violent act. Castrate a convicted rapist on tv using a couple of rusty rail road spikes and a dull pair of sewing scissors…cauterize it with the butt end of a smoldering cigar, give the convict a shot of adrenaline to keep him awake thru the process, and the rest of the wannabe rapists runnin loose probably won’t even look at a naked Barbie doll again, let alone envisioning the violent tortuous act of rape! And I don’t wanna hear that whole b.s. argument about cruel and unusual punishment of prisoners…it was their own cruel and unusual act of violence which should result in a punishment befitting the crime…you steal, maybe you should have a hand chopped off, as they still do in some foreign countries!

  9. avatarhomobangbangamus says:

    We keep telling them to leave us alone. But they won’t hear of it. I no longer have the right to be free because they no longer want me to be free. They want to take everything they can from me and my children.

    At some point, this will have to get serious. I leave it to your imagination, how.

  10. avatarRich says:

    Never, ever buy into the I am here from the governemnt to help you by taking away freedoms.

  11. avatarUncle Lar says:

    Bruce makes an excellent and most critical point. Far too many so called gun laws are intended to prevent violence and since they only affect those willing to obey the law fail miserably.
    The classic argument is of course that no right is absolute. After all you can’t yell fire in a crowded theater. But the truth is that yes you can, but if you do so maliciously you must pay the consequences of your actions and cannot hide behind your First Amendment free speech right to avoid punishment. If we treated that the way they try to legislate firearms we would all have to wear locked gags every time we enter a theater.

  12. avatarBill says:

    Ryan, Ben and Rabbi tying to make an argument that felons should be denied their right to own a firearm is laughable in the extreme. Since when has any law ever stopped a criminal from getting a firearm? Criminals, by definition, do not obey the law. Your arguments are completely ridiculous.

  13. avatarHerbM says:

    NICS/Brady is NOT necessarily “here to stay” and one of the first steps to eliminating this terrible law is to ensure that all of the gun rights activists understand that it can be removed, then to spread the failures of this law and the fact that it needs to be removed to all who claim to support the RKBA.

    A law that serves no useful purpose, and that certainly applies to a law that isn’t even enforced on CRIMINALS is not a useful law.

    Less than 100 criminals are prosecuted each year for Brady/NICS violations — and the vast majority of those are because the authorities needed to arrest or prosecute a criminal but can’t immediately make the real charge stick, or as a “predicate felony” for a conspiracy or RICO charge.
    http://www.usdoj.gov/oig/reports/ATF/e0406/final.pdf

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