“On another issue, Republicans claim Democrats want to confiscate your guns. That’s not true. It’s a scare tactic used for decades with the help of the National Rifle Association and American Legislative Exchange Council, a Federalist think tank pushing their radical agenda.” That’s John Foster Way regurgitating the oft-heard whopper in soothing tones of reasonableness. Not that there isn’t a kernel of truth to it when it comes to the whole NRA fundraising thing. But slap a polygraph on any “common sense” gun controller and deep down, under all those layers of fear, distrust and loathing lies the gun grabber within . . .

As with a prior chief executive, it depends on what the meaning of “confiscate” is. If you mean the Dems want to send blue-helmeted UN troops to kick in our doors and take our guns, then yes, it’s kooky talk (well, except for the odd moron’s suggestion).

If, however, you mean implementing “Goldilocks gun control” (some guns are too big (“vest busters”), some guns are too small (“pocket rockets”), some guns don’t have a “sporting purpose” (“assault” weapons), some guns are too cheap (Saturday night specials), etc.), and ever expanding lists of “prohibited persons”, and “safe storage” laws (all guns must be locked up with ammunition stored separately) . . . but let’s look at that last one for a moment.

I know people ridicule us slippery slopers (this despite the evidence from England and Australia, despite the characterization of so many gun laws as “a good first step” and despite the incrementalism shown by the ATF with their “temporary emergency” multiple sales reporting requirement which now seems not only to be permanent but is being prepped for a national roll-out). But let’s look at a logical (from the antis viewpoint anyway) “safe storage” progression.

We need to keep guns and ammunition locked up and separated (for the children, of course). Except that more than a third of kids in “safely stored” households knew how to access their parents’ guns and almost a quarter of them had handled those guns. Obviously we need to get guns out of the house and somewhere safe. You can’t argue that you need your guns for protection because, after all, how much protection can an unloaded and secured firearm offer? So we might as well lock them up in an armory. That way you can still shoot them when you want to (as long as it is between 9 and 5, Monday through Friday except holidays) but at least the children are safe.

So no, your guns won’t be confiscated, they’ll just be safely stored in a .gov armory until such time as you want to shoot them…or you become a prohibited person, or those models are outlawed. And ammunition may be kind of expensive when the government decides to de-mil all their surplus brass. And buy 450 million rounds for DHS and ICE. On top of the 200 million DHS had already ordered. And the 100 million ordered by the FBI. And another half-million for the Department of Agriculture. Yes, Agriculture.

The interesting fact that Mitt Romney left out about President Barack Obama at the recent NRA convention in St. Louis is that he hasn’t done anything, either pro or con, about any Second Amendment issue.

Well, except for the Obama-Biden Urban Policy agenda to Address Gun Violence in Cities.  That’s the proposal to renew the Clinton-era AWB (with a new version which was much more restrictive), closing the gun show “loophole” (by imprisoning show organizers if a single attendee attempted to make a private sale) and making guns “childproof.” Never mind the long gun registry in effect for border state sales. Oh, and Question 59 on their employment questionnaire.

And then there’s DHS’s report, Rightwing Extremism: Current Economic and Political Climate Fueling Resurgence in Radicalization and Recruitment which said (in part):

The possible passage of new restrictions on firearms and the return of military veterans facing significant challenges reintegrating into their communities could lead to the potential emergence of terrorist groups or lone wolf extremists capable of carrying out violent attacks.

And the administration’s support for CIFTA which would require a gov’t license to attach a scope, replace a trigger or even load a weapon. And their reversal of an already approved plan to import 800,000 U.S. M-1’s from South Korea. And the CDC’s sudden (Congressionally prohibited) re-entry into the “gun research” field by calling it research into “the surrounding web of circumstances” of gun violence. And Fast & Furious. And the ATF’s reversal of a forty-two year old ruling regarding the transfer of firearms which made it much more difficult to conduct business. And the DoD’s (quickly rescinded) plan to de-mil all their brass.


But aside from that, yeah, Obama hasn’t done anything about the Second Amendment issue. And look, out comes the bloody shirt!

The Trayvon Martin case has brought the insane Stand Your Ground law into the forefront of the debate. The NRA and ALEC are still pushing these vigilante “shoot first, ask questions later” Wild-West-type laws in other states.

Okay, for starters, “shooting first” is a good way to wind up in prison or dead. When Florida passed SB436, it did nothing to change the standards for use of deadly force. Before SYG, someone was only allowed to use deadly force if . . .

He or she reasonably believes that such force is necessary to prevent imminent death or great bodily harm to himself or herself or another or to prevent the imminent commission of a forcible felony

After SYG passed, someone was only allowed to use deadly force if:

[H]e or she reasonably believes it is necessary to do so to prevent death or great bodily harm to himself or herself or another or to prevent the commission of a forcible felony.

What SYG did do was explicitly remove the any “duty to retreat” and, based on witness statements, that single change was completely irrelevant to the case since Martin was sitting on Zimmerman thus rendering moot the idea of retreat.

Oh and John? Since when is defense of self or another person from what’s reasonably believed to be a violent, deadly attack considered “vigilantism”? And since vigilantism is the use of extralegal action in defiance of existing law, how does defending yourself as allowed by law constitute “vigilantism”? Just wondering.

But John is on a roll, let’s not interrupt him.

The only thing Democrats are guilty of is being the voice of reason. Fighting for stringent gun laws that make it more difficult for those such as the gunman who killed six and wounded U.S. Rep. Gabby Giffords to buy a gun is not being anti-gun ownership.

What stringent gun laws? The Tucson shooter had never been adjudicated a threat to himself or others, so unless John wants to start up a Department of Pre-Crime, there really isn’t much that could have been done. Wait. I take that back, there was something that could have been done to stop the Tucson shooter. Sheriff Dupnik could have arrested the loony S.O.B. when he started making death threats!

Banning certain ammunition, such as the 33-bullet magazine her assailant had in his Glock 19, is sensible, but it was shot down — pardon the pun — by Republicans lobbied by the NRA and ALEC.

No John, confusing ammunition and magazines is actually nonsensical. But given his problems reloading, if the Tucson shooter had been limited to smaller mags, wouldn’t there have been a lower toll? Maybe so, maybe no. If he’d been limited to low-cap mags, he might have practiced fast reloads, and as we all know, practice makes perfect. As for Rep McCarthy’s bill, it wasn’t “shot down,” it was referred to committee and is awaiting action like about 95% of all other bills introduced.

The Bill of Rights was written in a time when the Second Amendment’s right to bear arms included a one-ball musket and maybe a long bayonet, or a one-shot handgun.

Or bear a six-shot handgun. Or bear a 9-shot handgun. Or bear a 14-shot carbine. Or bear a 20-ball musket. Or bear a Puckle gun. Well, maybe a Puckle gun is a little too big to bear, but you get my point.

At least John isn’t a hypocrite; he’s all in favor of trashing the First amendment along with the Second (which says something about gun nuts’ belief that a disregard for the Second Amendment indicates a disregard for all civil rights):

Our forefathers could never have imagined today’s weapons and how far their subliminal rhetoric could go.

Billboards, newspapers, computers, radio and endless 24-hour opinion channels affect almost every citizen’s thoughts. Surely, if they had known of today’s weapons, and the reach of one person’s rhetoric, something a little more invasive may have been written, don’t you think?

Actually no. I think the Founders had sufficient intelligence and imagination to foresee that technology would continue to advance; from matchlock to wheel-lock to flintlock, from horse-power to water-power to steam-power (Watt having introduced his engine some 6 years before the Bill of Rights was drafted) and were firm in their belief that the freedoms to speak, publish, worship, or own and carry the weapon of your choice, are natural, fundamental, and inalienable human, individual, civil, and Constitutional rights, subject neither to the democratic process nor to arguments grounded in social utility.[1]


  1. “The Founders never intended for the 1st Amendment to encompass the ability to instantly acess potentially damaging information via the Internet.With the acess to information on infidelity sites,child porn,and nuclear weapons and security data its clear some ‘common sense’ laws on internet acess should be passed.China is a great example of another nation which nhas balanced freedom of speech with public safety.How do we know the guy next to us at Starbucks isn’t downloading Russian nuclear launch codes ,or instructions on how to avoid a vehicle search by police?Don’t you care about our officers and law enforcement?

    To the end of securing public safety,I recomend we begin with an ‘computer Security Bill’.No laptop or desktop can be sold with more than 500 gB of onboard HD space and 4 GB of onboard RAM.Any unregistered computer with this capability will be considered an “Assault Computer” and punishable as a felony with prmanet denial of acess to technology or computers.

    No computer or cell phone may purchased,tranported,or carried without a permit.Anyone caught with an unregistered cellular or mobile computer will be subject to charges for ‘unlawful use of a deadly transmitter’.

    Its common sense electronics control.I believe in the 1st Amendment,but we have to protect our law enforcement and kids from potential threats.”

    • In 1958 I got my first 2 mail order firearms , a 7.65 MM Mauser for a big $ 28.00 was in new mint condition and new bayonet and a ww1 9MM Luger for $39.00 and 200 rounds ammo for each …….. Railway Shipping to my front door ,,, No questions asked from Hunters Lodge, just a note that i was 21 years old…BOY have we lost our freedoms and Liberty and in 1958 the only crime was in the old movies,,, no one locked house or car doors ,,,, no crime…

    • Sad to say this, but your analogy may be close to coming true. But in this case, its the other political party doing it.. Republicans pushed SOPA and are now trying to push through CISPA over the President’s veto….. Which will kill privacy on the internet and basically allow gov’t to track your internet usage WITHOUT a warrant. Ron Paul is the only major figure on the Republican side crying foul.
      Too bad we don’t have a party that supports gun AND information rights.
      If you don’t know what CISPA is, look it up… then call your congressman..

    • omg ST, that is the funniest damned thing i have read in a while.
      Its funny because that is precisely the logic of gun banners. To
      reinforce what you’re saying, the same logic can be applied with
      rape. Because a few men cannot control their penises and commit
      horrendous sexual crimes, all men should have their penises removed
      to end rape.

  2. Another move that is underway to take away our guns and perhaps much, much more lies in Obamacare. Some doctors have started asking patients if there are any guns in the home and if so, what type and how many.Obamacare currently stands as this yawning abyss into which any choice we currently make may fall. If we have guns we might lose our insurance (too dangerous for the Government approved insurance), if we smoke(OMG, of course that is unacceptable), if we drink, if we ride a motorcycle
    (with or without a helmet), eat fatty foods(salty foods, fried foods, red meat, any food with flavor). Talk about a slippery slope.

    • Insurance companies have been doing this for years: it has nothing to do with Romney care.

      • Obamacare will absolutely be linked to gun control, increased taxes, and additional government intervention. The excuses are already there – we need to ensure public safety and health, lead toxicity, etc. Doubt it if you want, but you’ll know soon enough if the Supreme Court allows it to pass.

        I pray, while I still can, that Obamacare doesn’t pass.

  3. It’s really about information right now. Who has what and where. Once enough data is gathered then policy can be developed and turned into regulation, since laws would not be passed this will come across from an agency.
    The only recourse will be SCOTUS challenges and that is expensive and time consuming.

  4. Am I a gun grabber since I believe that automatic weapons should be regulated?

    I am not sure about the fore-fathers’ insight into technological Advances of the future. Watts had refined the steam engine at the time of the writing of the constitution, but it was used in just one industry, I am pretty sure (mining), and was not at all wide spread. If they could not foresee the change of the US defense going from state and local militias to the monstrous sized organized military we have today, why would they be better prognosticators about technology?

    • What does that matter? The intent was for citizens to be as well-armed as any soldier.

    • “If they could not foresee the change of the US defense going from state and local militias to the monstrous sized organized military we have today, why would they be better prognosticators about technology?”

      Actually, I recall that they often wrote about foreseeing such a things, and one of the outputs of that foresight was the second amendment. Our failure to head those warnings and adhere to the Constitution does not in anyway diminish their foresight.

    • “Militia” is, by it’s very definition, a word with no actual objective standard – it’s defined by what it isn’t (and that’s a “regular army”).

      As such, was the Continental Army composed of militiamen? At its very inception, perhaps, but when they became the Continental Army (with a provisional government and all) they ceased existing as a militia, in my eyes.

      If you’re really gonna make the argument that our forbears were too dim to imagine their country one day having an actual standing army – something that already existed at the time in other countries – I don’t see any need to continue the discussion. Size and scope of the potential standing army are somewhat irrelevant if it’s large enough to defend as powerful a country as ours was always intended to be (the Monroe Doctrine was anything but unambitious in scope).

      • Not too dim, but products of their time.

        Do you really think that men who went to war over representation would have imagined that we would have a huge military to take care of the needs of our empire? Clearly, our military is far, far larger than is needed for our defense; it is this large to project power. And I am a bit suspicious of the idea that the US was always meant to be this way. After the revolution the Continental Army was disbanded, and there was not really a standing army formed to take its place. The Militia Acts did allow the president to nationalize the state and local militias, but where was the standing army. Finally, in what way is the Monroe doctrine part of the discussion of the founders’ beliefs?

      • The Militia system died long before anybody considered gun controlled. The War of 1812 was the only war where the organized militia was used in large numbers. They were ineffective. The last federal call up of the Militia was during the three week Blackhawk war and once again they were found wanting. The remaining foreign wars (all three of them) of the 19th Century were fought with a mix of regular forces and US Volunteers raised by state quota. The Civil War was primarily fought with US Volunteers.

        On the eve of the First World War everybody assumed that the US Volunteer system would be used again. Wilson demurred and instituted a draft and called up of National Guard units. The organization of National Guard, still referred at the time in many states as the Militia,, was essential part time soldiers in the surviving Volunteers units from the Civil War. After World War I the National Guard became a standing force of US Volunteers and not a universal militia.

      • and each state has a militia, usually comprised of the national guard and every other human with a pulse.

      • I realize they are regulated. I was asking if my support of that fact made me a gun grabber, for the author had claimed that if we “slap a polygraph on any ‘common sense’ gun controller and deep down . . . all those layers of fear, [we would find the] distrust and loathing lies the gun grabber within . . .”

        • The 2nd Amendement was written with the most advanced military arms of the time in mind (see how it doesn’t say “except cannons, people don’t need cannon). Just like the 1st was written with the most advanced communication tools of the time in mind (no mention of “except by printing press, that’s too much mechanized talking”). The milita (roughly defined at the time as “anyone with a gun”) was to be the defensive military might of the nation, prepared to take on the British (most powerful military in the world) again if they invaded. I doubt the founding fathers would want the defensive backbone of the nation using muskets in the face of automatic weapons. So yeah, I’d say 2A covers any weapon that you can operate without endangering innocents. (This POV brought to you, in part, by a generous donation from the Dan wants a Tank fund *VROOOM*)

  5. Some people cannot accept that the genie is, and has been, out of the bottle. Their naive aims would be cute if they did not lead to disasters. “If people were not armed then we would not have mass shootings”, “If we can make sure that mentally unstable people do not have access to weapons, ‘this’ would never happen.” The list could go on and on.

    The problem mankind has had is that people keep building better weapons and keep devising schemes to kill. Man is more intelligent than moral. A large degree of violence acceptance is not only necessary for living on planet earth, it is sane. Unless you can grab ideas and control gun thought you will never make the world any safer.

    • Or if you could just destroy all the evil implements of war out there. =)

      Given how easy it is to make a firearm, however (see the cottage industries in India or books on the market today), that will never happen, so folks have to accept the fact that deadly weapons will always exist… and if those weapons are always gonna exist trying to ban ’em most certainly won’t work.

    • “‘If people were not armed then we would not have mass shootings’, ‘If we can make sure that mentally unstable people do not have access to weapons, ‘this’ would never happen.’ The list could go on and on.”

      You’re absolutely right. As the saying goes, “If your auntie had balls she’d be your uncle.”

      Or my favorite, which I got from my dad many, many years ago, “If a frog had wings he wouldn’t wear his ass out hoppin’.”

  6. Bruce, I always look forward to your factual deconstructions. Rebuttals to anti gun pieces are frequently, and justifiably so, very heated and emotional. It’s nice to have calm, cool, point-by-point rebuttals to replenish the ammo.

  7. Thank you, Bruce, for chronicling the record of POTUS’ “under the radar” gun control schemes.

    FYI, I’ll be happy to give up my guns if the cops and criminals do the same. Otherwise, I think I’ll be hanging on to mine.

  8. “Our forefathers could never have imagined today’s weapons and how far their subliminal rhetoric could go.”

    Actually, I believe they’d be immensely proud at how uncompromising many Americans are in keeping and fighting for the Amendment that was put into place as a deterrent against tyrannical government and a safeguard of personal protection and freedom. I think they’d be immensely disappointed that scumbags like this inhabit their country and benefit from its legacy.

  9. Actually by implication he might be trampling the Fourth Ammendment too. When he states:

    “Surely, if they had known of today’s weapons, and the reach of one person’s rhetoric, something a little more invasive may have been written, don’t you think?”

    I think he is also referring to an invasive approach to arms such as random checks, registration, etc etc. Such things would not constitute a reasonable search or seizure. So in one sentence he tramples the First, Second and Fourth Ammendments.

    And yet firearms owners are the paranoid ones. Riiiiiiight.

  10. “A New Age Progressive Secularist Libtard Think-Tank is defined as;- collectivists engaged in a brain melding exercise to solve for the problem of how to uninvent the nug.”

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