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Scott Rasmussen says the gun control debate is about trust, not guns.

“The ongoing frustration (of the gun control debate) stems from the fact that the debate is not really about guns. It’s about who you trust. Those who would like to see guns strongly regulated or banned . . . are suggesting that only government officials or those authorized by the government can have a gun. For people to be comfortable with giving government a monopoly on deadly weapons requires a great deal of trust in government. But, in 21 century America, that’s pretty hard to find.” – Scott Rasmussen in The Gun Control Debate is Not About Guns [via]

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    • No, the gun control debate is about guns. Saying it is anything else is wrong and misleading.

      Making gun control a trust issue dilutes the constitutional aspects to the same level as seatbelt laws and safe drinking water. We have no choice but to trust the government at many levels to maintain a functioning American society. Whether real or symbolic, 2A guns represent the very thread holding the fabric of that society together.

      • Except you are wrong.

        Any antigunner deep down is a statist who thinks government can do no wrong.

        Democide killed 262 million people in the 20th Century alone and that number doesn’t include wars. Trusting government after it continually lies, cheats, steals, corrupts, kills, and acts hypocritically is naïve, insane stupidity.

        • Yup. There has become a prevailing thought process and narrative:
          To every perceived problem there exists a solution.
          That solution can and should be implemented by the government.

          Neither is true. In fact, there are so many instances of government solutions that, not only don’t solve the original problem, they create new problems and preclude the possibility of ever solving the original problem.

          Enough solutions. The people can’t take any more solutions.

        • This is also a very wrong-headed statement:
          “We have no choice but to trust the government”. That whole statement has zero logic. Like a ‘Christian’ fundamentalist says we all have no choice but to believe in the Bible, because it says the Bible is true in the Bible. Seemingly no care whatsoever of how ridiculous circular logic is.
          To state that we all MUST trust government simply because it “must” be, simply reeks of Statism. No logical or reasonable argument given, only the world “must”. Translation; everybody MUST agree with [fill in the blank].
          The same as every other fundamental religion, the presence of a basic dogma that MUST not be examined or discussed, only blindly accepted. That’s what makes Statism a religion instead of merely politics.

      • “No, the gun control debate is about guns.”

        Uh, not even remotely.

        If anti-gunners were truly concerned about reducing “gun violence” (their term, not mine) they would be going whole-hog after handguns, which account for the vast majority of “gun violence” incidents.

        Instead they are going after rifles and rifle accessories, which are, relatively speaking, somewhere between a mere blip on the radar and so overwhelmingly insignificant statistically as to be considered non-existent.

        The fact that they are not proves that “gun control” is NOTHING if not about CONTROL.

      • Sam, if the gun control argument is about guns, then it isn’t about the Second Amendment, because the Second is all about who we trust — and its answer is “not the government”.

        I think this is one reason Second Amendment support is growing: it’s clearly meant to empower the people against the government, and now four of five Americans believe the federal government can’t be trusted to do the right thing even half the time. Add that to four-fifths who believe that being able to own guns is either essential or very important to freedom.

    • In a way, it’s the same thing. Remember that the gun control nuts’ argument against self-defense basically boils down to “you can trust the government to protect you”. This, of course, takes the idea of trust in government to a whole other level, akin to the trust of a small child towards a parent (indeed, an analogy explicitly employed by several on the Left).

      • Anti-gunners get livid when I point out that in the statement “you can trust the government to protect you”, the first “you” and the second “you” are not the same at all: the first is you personally, but the second is you as member of a herd, a statistic and not a person.

  1. “21 century America, that’s pretty hard to find” Given how fast governments can flip out, I would say that is true anywhere and anytime. No matter how “good” a goverment is, I can guarantee you that given the correct circumstances, it can all go into the pot within a week. Give a country 5 years and it can do a complete 180.

    • Came to say exactly this. Even if you trust the current government, whose to say you’ll be able to in the future? It’s not a single unchanging entity, the government is composed of many different people. And not only are there new people entering government roles all the time, but the people themselves can change their attitudes and opinions.

      • Even more important, out of all those people that comprise the government the entire perception of our governments position can change based on the opinions of 1-2 people.

        51-49 pro gun is only two emotionally charged votes away (or someones absence) from being 51-49 anti gun. We walk a very fine line in this country and sometimes we forget how narrow that is

    • There is only ONE country in history that has come up with “We hold these truth’s……..”

      The rest of the world in never going to swing our direction so not relevant.

      • LOL,

        If you believe that the U.S. actually abides by those principles…

        I’ve got a bridge in Brooklyn to sell you.

        • The Punisher,

          I have heard claims that Ben Franklin once stated, “The United States is the worst country in the world, except for all the other countries.” or something like that.

          I think that is one of the most profound and accurate statements that I have ever heard.

        • “Indeed it has been said that democracy is the worst form of Government except for all those other forms that have been tried from time to time …” – Winston Churchill.

          Since I’m commenting anyway, someone said “democide” and, by context, meant homicide at the hands of government. Democracy comes from the Greek word “demos” and whatever word “cracy” comes from. Demos means people, like “theo” in theocracy means “god.” The “cracy” part means rule by whatever the first part is. Democide would probably either mean the killing of or by people.

        • Homicide and democide mean the killing of a person or of the people; the source/agent of the killing isn’t implied in the word.

          Democracy describes rule/power by/from the people — which would be clear in Greek, because it has conjugation that indicates the grammatical relationship between these word parts, and we don’t. (Pedantic, I know, but couldn’t resist.)

        • @The Punisher The United States has a written constitution, which already makes us unusual among other Western countries. Not only that it was designed to limit government and designed to make it purposefully inefficient. Granted Uncle Same has gotten away from its principles…but he doesn’t hold a candle to our cousins across the pond.

        • “If you believe that the U.S. actually abides by those principles…”

          Punisher, Serge hit the nail on the head.

          The US is a *vastly* better place than nearly everywhere else. He sees that from a very special perspective, growing up in the old Soviet Union under actual communist control. If you had a solid taste of that, your perspective would likely be far different.

          Serge, I have a favor to ask – Would you (or Dr. Vino, or any other ‘Iron Curtain’ folks) consider writing a TTAG article about your extended family’s experience in growing up over there? You’ve dropped some tantalizing clues here and there, but a first-hand account would be quite educational about the realities there at the time…

    • “Give a country 5 years and it can do a complete 180…”

      Which is exactly what happened to the US…especially after the signing of the Constitution and after the “Civil” War.

      200+ years on and the dumbed down sheeple of the country still haven’t figured it out yet.

  2. Why WOULDN’T I trust Eric Holder, Loretta Lynch, and Lon Horiuchi to be the only ones with firearms?

    That’s like hesitating to hire Harvey Weinstein to run a battered women’s shelter, Jeffrey Dahmer as a cook, or Jerry Sandusky to run a boy’s school…

  3. Hey, I trust the government… I trust them to steal land, money, and resources. I trust them to infect their citizens with diseases to see what happens. I trust them to cover for each other and look the other way. I trust them to accept money for political favors. I trust them to screw us all over and to ‘re-distribute’ the nation’s wealth.

      • Duke said, “Please give me one instance where this has happened in the US (or anywhere else in the world).”
        You have got to be kidding. Here are a few examples:
        1) The Tuskegee syphilis experiments in USA from 1932 to 1972. Yes, they didn’t end until 1972.
        2) Project MKUltra in USA from the 1950s to 1973. Yes, it didn’t end until 1973 (and if you believe it ever really ended completely, and was never resumed under another name, you’re naive).
        3) Project MKSearch in USA.
        4) Nazi experiments on Jews and other Auschwitz prisoners in Germany during WWII (does the name Dr. Josef Mengele ring a bell?)

        • Derringer Dave,

          Commenter “The Duke” ended his comment with a slash and the letter s like this /s — that is a way of indicating that his comment was sarcasm.

          It is similar to the way you can format certain types of electronic documents or even software code.

          Having said all that, you did an excellent job providing specific examples. Remain ready and willing to quote those examples to people who have no knowledge of them.

  4. Our Constitution was written with an absolute mistrust of a federal government thus only ceding limited power. All other rights and power reside among the States and the People. Those who either can’t or won’t see the danger of an all powerful federal government are the enemies of Liberty and Freedom. Mistrust is as much an American thing as baseball and apple pie.

    • “absolute mistrust of a federal government” a government made up of your ahole neighbors who needed a job. Never lose sight of what the potential problem is. If you let it be a nameless faceless ‘THEY’ you (people generally) are less likely to trust them, and feel more powerless against them, which is a dangerous position.

      • That “faceless” part is important: as the size of bureaucracy has grown, so has mistrust of government because it’s not just impersonal but utterly not accountable to the people.

    • Wrong.

      Unfortunately you’re perpetuating the government school lie we’ve all been taught.

      In reality the Constitution was concocted on purpose by Hamilton, Madison and their cronies to erect a strong central government in the vein of Europe. I suggest you go read the Federalist Papers and the Anti-Federalist papers.

      Also note that Congress was the only body able to ratify a new document or charter for government. The Philadelphia convention was not even a legal, governing body. The Congress delegated the authority to the convention because they were supposed to be making some “tweaks” to the Articles of Confederation and then submit them to Congress. Instead they emerged with a whole new style of government. In any other sense in history this would be called a coup.

      The Bill of Rights weren’t even in the original document! They only came about because as each State’s special, secret committee met to “ratify” the document, various men saw the inherent evil of the document and the kind of centralized beast it would create and quickly moved to put more shackles on it.

      It didn’t do much good. By the 1860s on the Republic was already in danger. The Secession of the South should’ve and would’ve prevented much of the tyranny we have had but Lincoln and his devils saw to that and the great centralization process really began in earnest after the war.

      • I’m glad you brought up the civil war, so many think it was about slavery. Kinda why I fly rebel flag, it’s my black eye to the gubment, race has nothing to do with it

        • Dude, that ship sailed and sunk. Let it go. The civil war was about slavery. Any talk otherwise is distortion and propaganda. Put down the internets a read a damn book!

        • Hey Sam, if the Civil War was “about slavery” why were the last slave owning states in the Union on the northern side of the conflict?

        • Claiming that the Civil War was “about slavery” simply imposes contemporary values on historical events. History can only be understand within its actual context. Your comment may work OK as dude-logic, but the actual history of the Civil War is a bit more complex than your simplistic politicization of the actual historic events.

        • @ShotgunSam,

          Actually, you are the one who needs to go read a book. Instead of believing the lies that have been spoon-fed to you since birth about the “Civil” War, I suggest you go read some real history about what happened. Amazon is a thing.

          Once you take the blinders off and decide that the red pill is for you…you’ll be shocked to realize the matrix of lies you are living in.

        • Rather doubtful that ‘shotgun’ sam will ever click on any link you provide. Statism IS religious fervor. Might just as well ask a Christian to read the Talmud, or refer a Muslim to Rushdie’s “Satanic Verses”. I don’t know how to break through their stone wall of denial, but I found out that facts and evidence don’t work.
          Still, its worth a try…

        • If taking a knee during the national anthem can mean protesting police brutality that didn’t happen, then flying the flag of the Confederate soldier can mean states’ rights and Southern pride, especially since there is a lot more evidence and logic behind it.

        • The Civil War was both about and not about slavery, which is to say it wasn’t a single-issue war. Sure, the South was standing for states’ rights, but the “right” they were interested in ahead of all else was the right to own other human beings as property.

          And yet as the war progressed they made many compromises with that, something I really wasn’t aware of until I met a guy in college who had a Confederate battle flag covering half his dorm room wall. That was a situation that puzzled many and infuriated a few, because the guy in question was undeniably black! But it was simple, really: his ancestor had been a freedman with his own farm, and that farm was endangered by the North’s armies, so he joined the Confederate Army to defend his home.
          Kinda screws up the normal narrative, huh?

  5. Rassmussen’s a tool for the left, and in it for himself only. He’s describing YOUR actions / opinions to THEM, and he ain’t doing it to ‘sell’ your position, he’s trying to ‘splain an inconceivable notion to them. Depew and Wake Forest’ll do that to you.

  6. 2nd A is about us people being able to protect our own people from our own “ellected” officials, being able to protect our selves fromt those who trusted us to voted them into power, no goverment will ever be friendly to the simple idea of their citizens (subjects) being able to defend themselves from any enemy, foreign or domestic. We citizens are not trusthworty ( to our goverment) in so many words.

  7. “It’s worth noting that the 45 years of growing distrust in the federal government has coincided with the growth of the Regulatory State. As distant and unaccountable bureaucrats have assumed more power, the disconnect between the government and the governed has grown.”

    Scott Rasmussen is an interesting guy. He runs a small polling outfit that is un-cannily accurate in ways that make the big polling outfits very uncomfortable.

    You know, the same big polling outfits that confidently predicted the BrumHildeBeast would be president.

    When Rasmussen says something, it’s usually well worth listening to…

    • Even Rasmussen predicted that Shillary RottenHam KKKlinton would be President, albeit by smaller margins, and did so right up until the closing hours of election night.

      I still laugh when remembering the shocked looks on every Dumbass-o-KKKrat’s face when Drumpf practically ran away with the electoral vote, though, even though I didn’t vote for the guy myself.

  8. Well said. Funny but lots of leftards like antifas and Berniebots don’t trust the gubmint but trust them to steal your guns. I have ZERO trust in the government. I’ll keep my meager arsenal…

  9. The reasons I do not “trust the government” are several:
    1) Contemporary America is ruled by politicians who have made a career out of their elected office and put career bureaucrats in offices and Courts where they can issue rules and regulations based on their political agenda with impunity.
    2) Both the career politicians and career bureaucrats main goal in governing is to preserve their careers and associated (self-granted) benefits and privileges, NOT to govern in compliance with the Constitution or with the best interests of the People as a guiding principle.
    3) States are allowed to violate Constitutional Law and principles at will without concern the Federal Government (and Courts) are going to challenge them.
    4) State and Local Governments can, therefore, impose egregious violations of Constitutionally protected rights upon the People, backed by civil and statutory penalties, and there is no recourse for individuals, or the People in general. This results in great disparity among the Citizens’ rights State-to-State.
    5) Functionally, government by the consent of the governed is dead and dying in the United States.

  10. Gun-control is about power and control. Government always militates against individual freedom and so it’s only natural that contemporary progressive-fascists working toward a one-party state would make gun-control (actually gun-confiscation) a major part of its agenda. Our founders wisely understood that keeping and bearing arms is a fundamental way for free people to have the power to challenge governmental tyranny. It is not surprising that, as our country has drifted steadily leftward under progressivism, governmental fear of an armed citizenry has become pathological. This is exactly why we have a second amendment. Concord Bridge was not an accident. Neither was Bundy Ranch. Both perfectly contextualize the essential purpose of the second amendment.

  11. From our first POTUS, perhaps the only indispensable man in American history:

    “Government is not reason, it is not eloquence, it is force; like fire, a troublesome servant and a fearful master. Never for a moment should it be left to irresponsible action.”

    Geo. Washington

  12. The problem with the government is it is made up almost entirely of low level functionaries and bureaucrats who cannot and should not be trusted with more than making a relatively simple process overly complicated, regulated, and taxed. Is every cop a paragon of virtue? No. Is every DMV employee an expert at efficiency? Nope. Are elected officials scrupulous and knowledgeable about what they want to legislate so that low level functionaries can do their jobs?…………..

    • I recently read R.J. Rummel’s Death by Government, shocking stuff. If you haven’t read it, check out James C. Scott’s Seeing Like a State.

  13. The quote isn’t stating what gun control or the 2A is about. It’s stating what the debate is about. If I trusted the government, I would ignore the gun control debate, because even if the legislature screwed up and passed gun control, the president wouldn’t sign it. If the president signed it, the courts would refuse to enforce it. And since I trust the government (in this hypothetical), I wouldn’t be worried if courts enforced it because I trust the government.

    But I don’t trust the government to do any branch of government to to the right thing at any step of the process, especially in some unknown future.

    On the pro-gun control side, they don’t trust people to have access to guns, which I don’t really fault them for. I don’t trust strangers anymore than I absolutely have to (which is actually a whole lot). But I trust the government even less since it is made up of a bunch of strangers that I have a much harder time holding to account for their actions.

  14. No one trusts the government….except when it comes to vaccine policy. Then the trust is unquestioning and unconditional because, well just because.

  15. As an Australian gun owner who used to be able to buy anything except full auto in my state until 1996 I have NO trust in government and gun control.

    I still own and use numerous firearms but not as many and no semi autos.

  16. The quote from Geo. Washington was more right than Scott Rasmussen’s take on the matter. Government is force, not unity.

    The way I see it, government can be trusted to implement rules that threaten to force compliance about their purported subject matter; and the rules can be short or long, straightforward or convoluted, sensible or misguided, depending on many factors including vanity, venality, righteousness, disdain for the populace, arrogance of the powerful, faith in central planning, etc.

    However, if one trusts government to do all of that, one still does not want government to do much more than it has to, because experience has shown us that too many past governmental actions have had a deleterious effect upon the populace at large.

  17. In the 20th century, among those who died at the hands of another human being, the majority were killed by Government, either their own or somebody else’s.

    And I’m the crazy man because I won’t give up my guns and trust government??? Oh that’s rich!

  18. The whole purpose of the 2nd Amendment is to insure that We The People don’t have to rely on trusting the government to assure our Freedoms.

  19. Being from Germany with lots of gun control I can say: Regarding gun control you can’t mistrust your government enough.

      • On the other hand, they have fair reason to feel that way: their governments work for them, while ours works for the “monied interests” (to borrow a term from T. Jefferson).

        Just as an example, my mom died recently and probably months early because of government, in this case the Oregon Medicaid people who wouldn’t even talk about whether or not my mom really needed help until they’d figured out just how much of her money and property they could take from her. When I described the situation to online friends, all those in Europe and Canada were horrified, because in their systems the care comes first and money questions (if any) get settled later.
        More and more, it really is just about the money.

        • The bureaucracies of Europe definitively do not work for their subjects, either. They are only interested in how much tax they can extract before the paper-thin vernier of civility finally melts away, if ever. One only needs to look at the migrant crisis (READ: predatory economic migrants primarily from AFPAK and North Africa NOT “refugees”) and what fresh hell it has caused. Nevermind the faceless and unaccountable E.U. parliament and the various unelected bureaucrats in Brussels thinking they can tell sovereign nation-states what they can do within their own borders.

          Oh, and socialized healthcare sucks, too. Another bunch of misfit bureaucrats that do not know you nor care about you having complete control over every aspect of your care, including whether or not you even receive it in the first place. Just more red tape and more subsidization of bureaucracy in place of care, putting more distance and time and money between you and your care providers. This means LESS money actually spent in sick people, NOT more.

        • Ultimately they don’t work for their citizens, but the agencies which are supposed to serve actually do so.

          My older brother, after spending four months in several European countries on a job, noted that government services in Europe are very effective… just like bread and circuses were for imperial Rome.

        • Actually Medicare is the most efficient delivery system for medical care coverage on the continent, even beating out most not-for-profit companies. The biggest problem with Bernie’s Medicare-for-all idea is that it would function on a federal level and thus be less responsive; Canada has the right idea in keeping their system based on the provincial level.


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