David Brooks
New York Times columnist David Brooks (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)
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New York Times columnist David Brooks is doing Americas gun owners the service of reminding them why they shouldn’t put any faith in opinion writers pontificating from their metropolitan ivory towers.

Brooks recently opined that America would be a much safer country if Americans would simply give up their freedoms and become more like Europe. If America wouldn’t hold onto the individual right to keep and bear arms as spelled out in the Second Amendment — and affirmed by the U.S. Supreme Court — he says the U.S. would be a much safer place.

In his estimation, giving up the ability for self-defense and defense of loved ones would make crime go away.

“That would take a gigantic culture shift in this country. A revamping of the way we think about privacy, a revamping of the way we think about the role government plays in protecting the common good,” Brooks said during a segment on PBS’ “Newshour.”

I think it would be something. I think it would be good not only to head off shootings, but good to live in a society where we cared more intimately about each other. And I would be willing to give up certain privacies for that to happen.

That’s certainly out of the mainstream of how the rest of America views lawful firearm ownership. There were over 21 million background checks for the sale of a firearm in 2020, the most ever in a single year. Last year, Americans submitted to 18.5 million background checks.

In 2022, background check figures are headed for the third strongest year on record. During the week up to and including Black Friday, the FBI’s National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) tallied over 711,000 background checks, with over 192,000 on Black Friday alone. That was the third busiest day for FBI’s NICS ever.

The Plan: Give Up Your Rights

Just how would America achieve the utopia that Brooks imagines? Just give up, he said. Give up your rights. Give up your freedoms. Submit to an Orwellian state that provides you with all your needs.

The Times’ house “conservative” admits that wouldn’t be easy.

“But for many Americans that would just be a massive cultural shift to regard our community and regard our common good in more frankly a European style,” Brooks explained. “I think it would benefit our society in a whole range of areas, but it’s hard to see that kind of culture change to a society that’s been pretty individualistic for a long, long time.”

America broke away from European-style rule for a reason. The Founding Fathers rejected the British crown’s demands to give up their guns then. Based on background checks for gun sales, America continues to reject calls for strict gun control. A recent Gallup poll found that support for more gun control dropped nine points from 66 percent to 57 percent in an October survey.

Failed Civilian Disarmament

The argument that individuals should surrender their gun rights has been tried elsewhere with predictable results. Gun owners who complied with gun seizures find themselves unable to protect themselves while criminals that ignore the law are empowered. A recent report from ABC News in Australia showed that criminals find it easier now to obtain illicit firearms than before the multiple amnesty periods when government officials collected firearms from Australians.

New Zealand instituted their own gun confiscation program and…crime spiked. New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern ushered in draconian gun control laws, including confiscation, and the country’s crime rate hit new peaks.

New Zealand Gun Buy back confiscation
Police Senior Sgt. Braydon Lenihan poses holding a banned gun that has been bent by a hydraulic machine outside a temporary gun collection venue in Porirua, near Wellington, New Zealand.  (AP photo/Nick Perry)

Go figure. The only ones left with guns were the criminals. That’s a lesson that Canada’s grappling with now as Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is eyeing his own gun confiscation scheme and banning the transfer of any handguns. Some Canadian provinces are rejecting the heavy-handed measures.

Sadly, history is replete with examples of regimes that took away its citizens firearms only to become tyrannical and turn their citizens into defenseless subjects. Those that fail to learn the lessons of history are doomed to repeat them.

Our Founding Fathers in the Declaration of Independence expressed their fear of a tyrannical government and enshrined our right to keep and bear arms for self defense in the Bill of Rights for a reason.

Brooks is wrong to think that ridding ourselves of our rights and lawful gun ownership would reduce crime. The answer to rampant crime is more effective law enforcement. The changes needed to safeguard America’s communities don’t begin with turning our backs on our freedoms. It starts with holding elected officials in the White House, Congress, state capitols and local district attorneys responsible for not enforcing the law and failing to hold criminals accountable.

Brooks’ notion is a devil’s bargain and Americans know it. Surrendering freedom has never resulted in anything less than creating a society of victims.

 

Larry Keane is SVP for Government and Public Affairs, Assistant Secretary and General Counsel of the National Shooting Sports Foundation.

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68 COMMENTS

  1. “Necessity is the plea for every infringement of human freedom. It is the argument of tyrants; it is the creed of slaves.”

    ― William Pitt the Younger

  2. I think that long before the WuFlu was released, there was a release of a stupid gene released into the libatard population.

    “Ya can’t fix stupid.”- RW

    • d. brooks was the “spokesman” for the Republican side on the PBS communist news hour. His democRat “opponent-colleague” was just as nauseating.

      If left up to pathetic pasty mouth RINO slugs like brooks instead of watching TV in your 2A secured home you could be unarmed and defenseless watching you and yours being bound and tortured by home invaders, etc. In other words when it comes to protecting you and yours d. brooks and his ilk belong in a toilet.

    • All of them. “Progressives” see the Constitution as a moldy 18th century document written by racists. They are doing their best to destroy it.

      • While twisted pompous progressive marxist democRats visualize the United States Constitution as a moldy racist document they belong to the party that owns the legacy of slavery, segregation, Jim Crow, the kkk, lynching, Eugenics, Gun Control and other race based atrocities.
        But not all is lost…They worship moldy 18th Century paintings, sculpture, music, musical instruments, etc. Shows even more how such hypocrites are not playing with a fully deck.

      • This…they envision replacement with a “Living” document. Where ‘rights’ can be created (or destroyed) through the use of interpretation–AKA imagination. The right to abortion. The right to choose your sex (YOUR truth). The right to be free from ‘hate speech’ (where ‘hate speech’ is what I disagree with but not what others may disagree with). Oh, and the right to ‘feel safe’ regardless of any form of reality.

      • The Founding Fathers were a great deal smarter than the idiots running the government, the media, and the “institutions of learning.” Ben Franklin said: “Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.”

  3. Ain’t gonna happen. Not on my watch. Glad there’s a great watery divide between us and that Eurotrash, willing to give up their liberties for security.

  4. The USA is for freedom. It’s effectively freedom’s last stand, there is nowhere else. There are places where you can feel “mostly free”, as long as things are normal and you don’t rock the boat. Several of them are even well-run, safe, and prosperous. There are places where the government isn’t strong enough to threaten your freedom, but also not strong enough to protect your rights from anyone else. But nobody does freedom like the USA.

    If David Brooks doesn’t like it, I suggest he leave.

  5. I still don’t understand why morons like this are still in country! I mean, if Europe is so desirable, leave us the phuk alone and buy a plane ticket!!

    • They’re here because in any given Western European country they’d be corporate drones making a bit above a “living wage” residing in one of those oh so chic 1000 square foot or less “houses” with a plot of “garden” the size of a pool table taking public transit to that menial job. Here in the US they have way more and wider opportunities to make themselves fabulously wealthy – at the expense of their fellow citizens, any semblance of ethical or logical thought, or the plain truth of course. Not that the damage the likes of Brooks does with their lane-brained, cockamamie “ideas” ever has a negative effect on THEM – they can ignore the consequences of their boneheaded viewpoints, those only afflict the “deplorables and bitter clingers” who get what they deserve.

      It’s the abject cowardice of Brooks and his ilk that really sticks in my craw – parlor-pink revolutionaries who don’t have the backbone to stand up for what they really believe in, just mealy mouthed weasels…though that’s an insult to the weasel, they’re at least useful in the grand scheme of the natural world, Brooks and his fellow travelers are just huge wastes of oxygen whose bloviating hooey should be ignored or at least laughed at by people with a functioning brain.

  6. “And I would be willing to give up certain privacies for that to happen”

    That’s an abject lie, but then again, he’s a leftist. When leftists say this, they mean taking yours away. There is no way on earth democrats, leftists or progressives are going to live by the edicts they impose. They haven’t yet and aren’t going to. Sacrifice is for The Little People.

  7. “a society where we cared more intimately about each other”

    How about a society where we leave each other the fuck alone, and hang those who don’t?

  8. “Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.” Benjamin Franklin

    Those old, dead, white men Founders had more wisdom in their little toes than the collective wisdom of Brooks and the rest of the elitist scum holding a death grip on today’s body politic.

  9. “To have good leaders you have to have good followers — able to recognize just authority, admire it, be grateful for it and emulate it.” — David Brooks

      • The “People’s Liberation Army”. Liberating the people from their lives and property. Just like Dacian’s “Caravan of Death” plans to do to at least a third of the population of the USA.

  10. “Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.” – Ben Franklin

  11. people today need to wake up and we need to get rid of the Sheep. the people of today have a too easy as compared to me in the Vietnam era , my father in the World War II or my grandfather in World War I. every generation that goes by gets weaker. people better start getting tougher and bring God back to our country or we are just going to continue the downward spiral.

  12. Yep, it is all the fault of those nasty right wing Republican gun owners that the US hasn’t become the Workers Paradise that the old Soviet Union was or that China currently is. Shame on us!

    Do I really need to add a /sarcasm tag on this?

  13. “I think it would be something. I think it would be good not only to head off shootings, but good to live in a society where we cared more intimately about each other. And I would be willing to give up certain privacies for that to happen.”

    That’s Brooks screaming “I’m a marxist!”

    One of the main differences between America and Europe; In Europe they are free because the government tells them they are. In America we are free and born into it because we are inherently free by right and not because the government can decide if we are or are not free.

    In other words, Europe is a tyranny – a modern day form of feudal tyranny.

    Hey Brooks, we don’t have “privacies” here in America, we have inherent rights. Europe has “privacies” so why don’t you take your marxist yearnings to go live in Europe where the goverment’s can decide what “privacies” you have or not while blowing smoke up your butt making you believe its freedom.

  14. Mr Brooks, welcome to Redneck Land. For just 60% of your income, I will provide you with a secure environment, where only the authorities have guns ( Redneck Royal Family). You can take up residence in the back pasture. To foster a sense of community you will have meals up to the big house with the Royal Family. To further promote a sense of community you will help with the gardens ( shoveling manure, weeding, watering,tilling, harvesting). I will censor your mail, internet, and media. Just for your safety. I will provide for your transportation ( tractor runs on used oil), to prevent more drilling. To further promote a sense of oneness you will be participating in hunting, gathering, fishing, and processing of same.

  15. quote————Brooks recently opined that America would be a much safer country if Americans would simply give up their freedoms and become more like Europe. If America wouldn’t hold onto the individual right to keep and bear arms as spelled out in the Second Amendment — and affirmed by the U.S. Supreme Court — he says the U.S. would be a much safer place———–quote

    Brooks is 100% correct. European gun laws haver proved they work and work well on keeping maniacs and criminals from getting guns.

    Even in the U.S. states that have tough gun laws have lower homicide rates with guns than hillbilly states that let anyone buy a second hand gun with no paperwork.

    quote————-In his estimation, giving up the ability for self-defense and defense of loved ones would make crime go away.

    “That would take a gigantic culture shift in this country.————–quote

    Brooks is again correct. Until we keep right wing fanatics off of school boards and start teaching children the truth about their own country, especially how depraved the gun culture is and how they are less safe with guns it will be difficult to convince the uneducated that more guns mean more homicides and chaos and mass murders. The statistics in both the U.S. and Europe prove this beyond all doubt.

    quote————-America broke away from European-style rule for a reason. The Founding Fathers rejected the British crown’s demands to give up their guns then.———–quote

    Falsehood and a complete distortion of American History. The British did not take guns from the Colonists until they started shooting at their soldiers.

    And the U.S. broke from Britain because a minority of greed monger merchants were too damn cheap and stingy to pay a few pennies in taxes to support Britain that was the hand that was feeding them. Britain and the U.S. were prospering because of the global trade between them. The war set back American prosperity and economic advancement by decades. Only 1/3 of the American people supported the revolution and that was only after the barrage of propaganda by the radical anarchist Thomas Paine who started deluging them with newspaper propaganda articles and pamphlets.

    The revolution was truly America’s greatest mistake in history as it ended up denying them a true democracy with a parliamentary government and multiple political parties and it delayed the end of slavery far longer because Britain had outlawed slavery far sooner.

    quote———–Brooks is wrong to think that ridding ourselves of our rights and lawful gun ownership would reduce crime. The answer to rampant crime is more effective law enforcement.————quote

    Brooks is not wrong. When criminals are better armed than the cops they are not going to end their rampages of crime and mass murder.

    quote———The answer to rampant crime is more effective law enforcement.————quote

    This is the same old tired right wing bullshit of “let the cops turn into judge, jury and executioners” and lets kill anyone that does not bow down and look down and prostrate themselves in front of a power mad sadistic cop. This is the way Nazi’s treated people during WWII. There is little difference between the far right in the U.S. and the original German Nazi’s. In some ways they are worse.

    quote———–Brooks’ notion is a devil’s bargain and Americans know it. Surrendering freedom has never resulted in anything less than creating a society of victims.——–quote

    Wrong again. The American people at present are prisoners and victims in their own country just waiting for the next mass murder or robbery because of our out of control gun problem that lets any criminal or nut case buy all the firepower they want by buying second hand guns. When one can even walk the streets after dark in the poorer East European countries and be far safer from robbery and murder than when in Capitalvania even the mentally retarded realize that gun control does indeed work and work well. Europe has proven it.

    • Even in the U.S. states that have tough gun laws have lower homicide rates with guns than hillbilly states that let anyone buy a second hand gun with no paperwork.

      Just can’t post ANYTHING that’s actually honest AND factual, can you? Nowhere in the United States of America can you buy a second hand gun with NO paperwork. IF you buy two guns at once both are listed on the 4473. IF you buy one and after the background check is done decide to buy another then a 2nd 4473 will be filled out and submitted. Your bullshit about states and gun laws in not even worth a response. Keep it up moron, you must feel the need to KEEP your credibility in the toilet otherwise why would you post such ignorant drivel. If you meant SECONDHAND as in “used” gun then only through private sale can you do so without paperwork but that’s not what you posted and an intellectual mountain like you could not make that mistake, right?

    • the planned raid on Concord to seize arms and ammunition (primarily powder stores)…was set in motion BEFORE the shooting started….

  16. I think the real solution for anyone enamored with the European style government and lifestyle is for said person to move to Europe. That way we primitive liberty minded types can live in liberty here and the safety and security types can live in subjugation there. Presto everyone is happy!

  17. “The role the government takes in protecting the common good?” Really? Lets be real here, the government can’t even protect a class room of school children when it’s standing outside of it with rifles, body armor and shields.

    The government arguably does more to protect its interests than any given individual.

  18. For over 400 years, those who found that boot on their neck comforting stayed home. Those who found it intolerable packed up everything they could carry, and came to America. But a couple generations of easy living have made a lot of us forget why we left the old country in the first place.

  19. And I would be willing to give up certain privacies for that to happen.

    Did they stop teaching World Geography in schools? Are these anti-American morons NOT aware that there are OTHER places in the world to live? Places where their ideology is mainstream, where people either NEVER had any rights or gave up their “freedoms” for the perception of safety. The indoctrination machine has been hard at work in Colleges and Universities since the 30s and now it has filtered all the way down to elementary grades in the public school system. We are victims of our own success and in danger of losing it all unless drastic measures are taken to purge the education institutions, judicial systems and our government of those who seek our downfall and regain control of our children’s upbringing once again instilling pride in country and respect for personal responsibility and achievement.

    • individual freedom is sacrosanct here….it is the essence of what we are all about….why should we “give up” anything people fought and died to preserve?…..

  20. And the response to this is simply “fuck off Commie.” You want a society where we all care more intimately about one another? What in the fuck are you babbling about? Oh yes, somehow you think it’s possible to control people, because we’re all automatons. Again, fuck off Commie.

  21. From the early 1970s.

    “If you make drugs legal all the crime will just go away. And there will be no need for drug dealers to have guns.”

    The Libertarians liberals and the left are all the same. Mr. Brooks a “liberal republican” thinks just like them.

  22. Well Mr. Brooks, you go right ahead and give up your Rights for the Illusion of Security. I’ll keep mine.
    For F**k’s sake, every Authoritarian Regime throughout History has promised the same, and it always ends in devastation for the populace.
    What a worthless Cretin.

  23. Mr. Brooks, move to Europe if you like it so much. I do not trust our government and I do not trust the media to report unbiasedly on the government.

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