As our ‘I Am A Gun Owner’ Facebook album illustrates, gun owners come in all shapes, sizes, colors, predilections and points on the political continuum. Which is as it should be. That said, it’s safe to say that the majority of our readers — and gun owners in general — tend toward the right/libertarian segments of the spectrum. Generally speaking, opponents of Americans’ Second Amendment freedoms reliably line up stage left. So again, generally speaking, friends of the RKBA will be found among members of the GOP. But as a couple of recent examples make clear, blindly assuming that Republicans are gun owners’ friends can be hazardous to the health of your civil rights. Take bloviating egotist extraordinaire Bill O’Reilly for example . . .
Federalize all firearms-related offenses? Give the power to prosecute all “gun crimes” to people like Eric Holder? People who are avowed enemies of Second Amendment freedoms? What could possibly go wrong?
Acknowledging the inconvenience that individual states to regulate guns as they see fit, blow-hard Bill prescribes federally-mandated “regulation conformity” across the states as a fix for America’s (ever-declining) gun crime problem. But whatever he may think that means in theory, in practice any federal attempt to homogenize gun regulation across the nation would inevitably lean toward more restrictive regimes enacted by the population centers of the northeast and California rather than the liberal (in the original sense of the word) laws in effect in locales like Arizona and Vermont.
Which brings us to that paragon of Republican establishmentarianism, Karl Rove (top) and his comments this morning regarding the Charleston church shooting. Appearing on ‘Fox News Sunday,’ here’s what he had to say (via dailycaller.com) about preventing future spree killers:
WALLACE: How do we stop the violence?
ROVE: I wish I had an easy answer for that, but I don’t think there’s an easy answer
We saw an act of evil. Racist, bigoted evil, and to me the amazing thing is that it was met with grief and love. Think about how far we’ve come since 1963. The whole weight of the government throughout the South was to impede finding and holding and bringing to justice the men who perpetrated the [Birmingham] bombing.
And here, we saw an entire state, an entire community, an entire nation come together, grieving as one and united in the belief that this was an evil act, so we’ve come a long way.
Now maybe there’s some magic law that will keep us from having more of these. I mean basically the only way to guarantee that we will dramatically reduce acts of violence involving guns is to basically remove guns from society, and until somebody gets enough “oomph” to repeal the Second Amendment, that’s not going to happen.
Got that? The presence of guns in society is the problem. And the root of the problem is the Second Amendment. So until someone with enough “oomph” comes along, we’re stuck with the guns.
Rove has apparently missed the fact that violent crime in general and crimes involving firearms in particular are at historic lows. And while he may long for the maneuvering room more oomph-intensive countries like Australia and the UK have in banning civilian firearm ownership, maybe he hasn’t seen what’s happened to their post-ban violent crime rates.
The moral of the story: party affiliation alone isn’t a reliable predictor of anyone’s reverence for individual freedoms. As our comment section frequently reflects, many of you learned that lesson long ago. If you know gun owners who haven’t figured that out yet, pass the word.