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In the wake of the shooting in California yesterday, the issue of firearms and the Second Amendment seems to be creeping into the presidential campaign as candidates on both sides stake out positions. Hillary Clinton has embraced the gun control lobby, having met several times during her campaign with “Moms Demand Action,” a group backed by former New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg. On the other side of the issue, leading Republicans are pushing back against calls for more gun restrictions, instead focusing on the issue of mental health as well as a drive for legislation allowing national reciprocity for state-issued concealed carry permits. As it stands, Americans have trended away from gun control, though recent times have seen a slight uptick in support, though the level has not reached near the highs of twenty-five years ago.

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Report from Politico:

From the stage in Boston’s historic Faneuil Hall last Sunday, Hillary Clinton scanned the balcony, spotted a group of women wearing “Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America” T-shirts over their sweaters and waved her recognition.

Singling out the activists has become a regular occurrence on the campaign trail — a group of the Moms attend the majority of Clinton’s town halls and rallies, with a presence large enough to make it hard for the candidate to ignore. Clinton has met with them numerous times privately, where attendees said she has spoken emotionally about her concern for the future safety of her granddaughter, and taken their questions publicly at town halls.

Now, with yet another mass shooting striking fear across the country after a reported 14 people were killed and another 17 injured in a shooting rampage in San Bernardino, California, Clinton’s embrace of gun control is on the verge of becoming a defining issue in the campaign, with all the political benefits and detriments associated with confronting the National Rifle Association and 2nd Amendment activists across the country.

This makes sense for Hillary, especially during the primary when she’s fighting for appeal among the Democratic party base, which fully supports new gun laws. On the other hand, it can be a political quagmire in the general election, especially in the South and Midwestern states where gun rights are favored much more highly over gun restrictions.

In the end, all reasonable parties want to reduce gun violence, though the philosophical difference in how that is achieved remains a deep divide.

22 COMMENTS

  1. A group of Union officers founded the NRA after the Civil War, unsatisfied with their troops’ poor marksmanship. They wanted a way to sponsor shooting training and competitions.

    The group testified in support of the first federal gun law in 1934, which attempted to crack down on the machine guns beloved by Bonnie and Clyde and other bank robbers. When one lawmaker asked whether the proposal violated the Constitution, the NRA witness responded, “I have not given it any study from that point of view.”

    They lobbied against the most stringent regulations quietly, but their principal focus was hunting and sportsmanship: bagging deer, not blocking laws.

    Those were the days, eh?

    In the late 1950s, it opened a new headquarters to house its hundreds of employees. Metal letters on the facade spelled out its purpose: firearms safety education, marksmanship training, shooting for recreation.

    Nowadays their apparent paranoid fear of a possible dystopic future prevents us from addressing our actual dystopic present.

    Because of these craven fear-mongers we can’t even begin to address the more than 30,000 gun deaths that are actually, in reality, happening in this country every year because a few of us must remain vigilant against the rise of an imaginary Hitler.

    Gimme a break.

    Does this not meet the definition of ‘sedition’?

    • “The group testified in support of the first federal gun law in 1934…”

      I have read elsewhere that they testified but can’t find that they were i support, have you got a source I could use? Cheers.

      • Yes, the NRA used to promote gun safety, not mindless proliferation.

        The NRA president actually BOASTED about helping to pass DC’s “ultra stringent” gun controls. And at the 1934 hearing, stated this:

        MR. FREDERICK: … “I have never believed in the general practice of carrying weapons. I seldom carry one. …
        I do not believe in the general promiscuous toting of guns. I think it should be sharply restricted and only under
        licenses”

        Here’s the link you were looking for:

        http://www.keepandbeararms.com/nra/nfa.asp

        • “NRA used to promote gun safety, not mindless proliferation” — Goethe states perniciously.

          So, according to liberal Goethe — the NRA is bad nowdays, since they have awaken and realized that the 2nd Amendment MUST NEVER be trampled again …because it is the SINGLE GUARANTEE upon which the rest of PRESERVING our Constitution rests!

          Liberal Goethe, like his favorite sidekck Swastika Boy (aka “progressive repub”) want to disarm all Americans — like Obama & Hillary do — so criminals and terrorist can commit heinous murders non-stop against disarmed and thus helpless Americans!

          What liberal Goethe and his sickening sidekick fail to acknowledge (due to their pernicious anti-Constitutional propaganda agenda) is that the 2nd Amendment guarantees the Right of Citizens to own and BEAR Arms — to bear means the right to carry on one’s person a gun!

          Had the 50+ people at the Christmas Party in
          San Bernardino been allowed to carry guns as per the US Constitution (instead of being banned by vile liberal California politicians shredding the 2nd Amendment), they would have killed the two Muslim terrorists in seconds — instead of becoming their prey!

          Their blood is on the hands of liberal anti-American creatures — like Obama, Hillary Clinton, all Californian Liberal Representatives, and such liberal supporters of this SCUM like yourself and your fav. Swastika Boy!

          • Is this satire? Obama and Hillary are only ‘liberal’ in the United States.

            In fact they should be called LINO’s ‘Liberal’s in Name Only’, named after the vinyl flooring we lay in kitchen areas here in New Zealand – something you can walk all over and spill shit on.

          • Who is to say that they would have been carrying if there was no gun, also, who is to really stop you from carrying a concealed handgun anyway and practicing your right to bear arms.

  2. A Government that does not trust its Citizens to have guns, is a Government NOT to be Trusted!

    Obama & Liberals Inc. “Gun-free-Zones” (such as our Schools and States like California) have turned our nation into a SHOOTING GALLERY for wackos and Muslim terrorists!

    If the 2nd Amendment was NOT DESTROYED in these areas — by the Insane Liberal Left — legally armed Americans would have been able to stop such Wackos on the spot!

    Obama and his Anti-AMERICAN cohorts — such as Hillary Clinton — must be put in Jail for Life (for their participation in ACTUALLY wanting, and possibly causing such tragedies, in their goal to SHRED THE US CONSTITUTION)!!!

    • It’s not about “the government taking your guns.” It’s about an honest disagreement between the minority who love guns and the minority who hate ’em.

      Most Americans (2/3 of us) don’t own guns, but we are sensitive to those who do. That’s really the bottom line.

      • Another one of liberal Goethe’s patented non-sequitur posts.

        A meaningless combination of words which amounts to zero meaning.

        • The problem with the gun discussion is the same as the problem with any other binary fight, in which the sides draw lines and argue as simplistically as possible.

          In this case, one side wants a gun in the hand of every man, woman, and child, 24/7. And the other side wants to eliminate all guns.

          And my complaint about the NRA is that all they are interested in is getting MORE guns into the hands of more people, so they have a chance at getting more dues–and more political power. They apparently have no interest in gun safety anymore.

          What is gun safety? It is seeking ways to change the equipment, the environment, and people, to reduce gun injuries and death.

          For instance, the automobile industry is working on ways to eliminate driver error, by making cars autonomous. Drivers may complain that it would take away their “right” to drive, but it’s one solution.

          Guns have so many problems. They are the preferred method of suicide. Kids get them and kill each other. Guns are stolen and used in crime. Guns are accidentally fired. Cops go straight for their guns. And on and on.

          There has been study in how to make a gun that can only be fired by its owner. Is there a way to prevent the gun to fire on its owner?

          And why can’t we find alternatives to guns? Why not more use of pepper spray, stun guns, and other, less lethal methods?

          I’d like to see more work toward finding solutions to problems, not so much just “cheering for our side.”

          • Let’s play a game with your sentence and apply your logic to everything in society so we can be intellectually honest:

            “Prescription medications have so many problems. They are a widely used method of suicide. Kids get them from medicine cabinets and share them with friends. Prescription medications are stolen from hospitals. Prescription medications cause accidental overdoses. Doctors go straight for their prescription pad even when unnecessary. And on and on.”

            You speak in meaningless platitudes about guns. In fact, why not make the sentence with something that kills more people every single day in America than guns ever could:

            “Cars have so many problems. They are the preferred method of transportation. More kids are killed by car accidents every year than anything else. Cars are stolen and used for crime. Cars are accidentally crashed. And on and on.”

            Shall we continue? I know there are “problems” with other things in society we can write about.

            “Ladders have so many problems. They are the preferred method of falling on the ground. Kids climb up them and fall off. Ladders are borrowed and used in ways that result in injury. Ladders cause so many deaths, the safety stickers on the side actually recommend not using them. And on and on.”

            Why is it so hard to deal in facts on this topic?

            • Using the words Goethe and Logic in the same sentence…LOL, good one!

              p.s. Excellent post, Nate!

            • Indeed. Why is it so hard to deal in facts, without getting so emotional (irrational?).

              My point was just exactly that point. Instead of trying to solve problems related to guns, the NRA, in particular, wants to just pump more guns, willy nilly, into the system, which makes matter worse.

              Why no discussion of how to actually solve the problems caused by guns?

              Here’s another example:

              People say they (1) think they “need” guns in their house for self protection, and yet, if rational, they will also say they (2) must secure the gun in a locked cabinet, so that kids can’t kill each other. But those two points are not compatible. If someone breaks into your house, you’re probably not going to have time to find the cabinet, and the key, get it out, find the bullets, load it, and go after the “bad guy.”

              There must be a solution to the problem of having a gun you can easily get to in the house, but having it (a) safely stowed, yet (b) not available to those who might misuse them.

              I never hear any attempt to solve such problems.

            • I know you’re asking because you really, truly don’t know and are not aware.

              “People say they (1) think they “need” guns in their house for self protection, and yet, if rational, they will also say they (2) must secure the gun in a locked cabinet, so that kids can’t kill each other. But those two points are not compatible. If someone breaks into your house, you’re probably not going to have time to find the cabinet, and the key, get it out, find the bullets, load it, and go after the “bad guy.””

              1) Safes come with bio-metric entry, electronic key pads, etc.. even small ones you can mount next to your bed. Very quick to enter yet completely secure from anyone but you accessing weapons.

              2) Bullets are already in the magazine which can be already in the gun in the safe. No fiddling for bullets.

              3) You really think this is an issue you need to solve for people?

              Try one of these or any dozen other variations…

              http://www.amazon.com/dp/B006OGOHD0/ref=twister_B00HMZW0KE?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1

              “There must be a solution to the problem of having a gun you can easily get to in the house, but having it (a) safely stowed, yet (b) not available to those who might misuse them.”

              Yes, there is a solution, many of them. It’s all personal preference.

              You just don’t know about it since you haven’t educated yourself before speaking on the topic.

            • OK, Nate, so, answer me this:

              ***do YOU own one of these marvelous, magical safes?
              How many people do?
              Is it really a “solution” if almost nobody uses it??

              Latest government statistics are that
              33,000 of us were were killed by guns in 2013,
              more than 130,000 injured.

              Unofficially, this year (so far) there have been
              650 kids (up to age 11),
              2,455 teens.

              67% of all homicides are from guns
              61% of those are suicides
              Accidental deaths not included
              Cost to the US taxpayer from direct hospital costs: $516 million.

              Number of mass shootings in 2015 (so far)–312.

              I guess you’re right–no problems to be solved. Confiscation is not the answer, but neither is brainless proliferation.

            • How do you know “nobody uses it?” Tons of people use safes like that one or any variation of others. You can buy them anywhere from Amazon to Home Depot to Walmart. You don’t own guns, how would you possibly know how to use or secure one? You’re just spouting about it because I answered your question with an exact solution to your problem. Moving on.

              So if confiscation isn’t the answer, as you said, then what is your proposal? What legislation do we need that we don’t currently have or is not currently utilized by one of the fifty states as an example?

              I’m beginning to think that you’re one of the many who are uninformed as to what laws governing firearms we already have on the books. You act like there are none, when in reality you have just never informed yourself. You want a “solution” to a problem you can’t define since you don’t know what “solutions” we’ve already implemented.

            • Guns kill people.

              That’s the bottom line.

              There has been a LOT of work, for decades, to make cars more safe–for both driver and pedestrian. And auto-related deaths per mile driven have dropped precipitously.

              Your “solution” is just to sell a safer garage.

            • When has a gun been convicted for murder? Do you have case law?

              Cars kill people, too. A lot more than guns. Especially children who are killed more in car accidents every year by far than firearms.

              Gun deaths and gun violence is down precipitously.

              It’s not my solution, it’s the solution YOU asked for. Remember?

              You’re the one coming up with ridiculous scenarios about how to access guns efficiently in a break-and-entry situation, not me.

              Ask better questions.

          • No, the problem is with numskulls like you, and all other Liberal scum that pollute our nation these days, not comprehending the US Constitution and its PURPOSE: The Assurance that The Citizen is BOSS — not The Government!

            That is the reason for the 2nd Amendment — since it is the ABSOLUTE GUARANTEE that All Armed Free US Citizens can stop any internal or external threat to our Republic, by the very fact that there are many more numbers of armed US citizens, compared to a The largest ARMY in the world! Plus, it is the last defense to preserve the Rest of our Constitution (read up on this, liberal kid)!

            Since you display such inane hate for The US Constitution — why don’t you consider moving to North Korea — where socialist punks like you belong?!

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