Friday, June 24, 2016

Firearms Friday: We Need A Reminder

The past week has been an interesting one to say the least with regard to the protection of our rights. Following the defeat of four gun control measures proposed in the Senate as a knee jerk reaction to the mass murder that took place in Orlando, many democrats decided to stage a sit in. Leading this act of defiance was Congressman John Lewis (D-GA) who, if anything, did a great disservice to his own noble legacy. He was a leader in the Civil Rights movement in the 1960’s fighting for the equal rights of all Americans regardless of the color of their skin and now he is fighting equally hard to strip law abiding Americans, of all races, of their rights.

He would do well to heed the advice of Thomas Jefferson who wrote in an early draft of the Virginia Constitution in 1776 that “No freeman shall ever be debarred the use of arms. Thankfully, this brief, misguided, and ineffectual action came to an end just as fast as it formed. However, that hasn’t stopped many politicians from continuing the debate and calling for the formation of an asinine utopia. A prime example can be found in the musings of Congressman Charlie Rangel (D-NY) who feels that members of congress need and deserve armed protection but that law abiding citizens should not be allowed to possess a firearm.   

Unfortunately, there are many in this country that have bought into this falsehood that only certain people should be able to possess firearms namely the military and law enforcement. Of course, those same people are filling our streets with manufactured outrage whenever a member of law enforcement is involved in a shooting. These are the same people that troll the internet and leave comments along the lines of “the founding fathers never intended for the second amendment to apply to modern firearms… they couldn’t have anticipated “high capacity magazines” and assault rifles [they really mean semi-automatic rifles like the AR-15]… they only had muskets.”

Well, that is one stinky pile that they have stepped in. The simple fact is that the founding fathers were well informed as to what the present had to offer and what the future might entail. To this point, many people have responded to the aforementioned types of comments referencing the Puckle gun as one of the developments of the time. However, while the revolver like mechanism speaks to the innovation of the time, it doesn’t combat the tainted perspectives on display. For that you actually have to look further back in history to the Kalthoff repeater which saw action with the Royal Foot Guards of Denmark in the Siege of Copenhagen (1658-59) and the Scanian War. While not prevalent, the magazine fed (up to 30 rounds) firearm had a rate of fire unmatched until the mid-nineteenth century. This firearm was a legend by the time the founding fathers drafted the Constitution and it is certain that they were aware of the technology.

Others politician in this current environment, like Senator Pat Toomey (R-PA), look to try and please both sides by introducing legislation that would do nothing more than muddy the waters and create a system as flawed as the individuals running it. All that it would cost us is a little bit of our freedom. Well, as Benjamin Franklin wrote in the Historical Review of Pennsylvania in 1759, “They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.” I’m not giving up my rights for the false sense of security that would be gained by the weak minded. Additionally, those who introduce such measures are walking a very dangerous line especially in Pennsylvania where it is written in our constitution (Art. 1, § 21 (enacted 1790, art. IX, § 21) that “The right of the citizens to bear arms in defence of themselves and the State shall not be questioned.” 

Sometimes we just need to remind people of these facts rather than allowing the propaganda to flow, unmolested, throughout the media. Right now, we face a serious crisis. It is not about what we own it is about the mentality of the people. It is about the the willingness to overlook the acts and intentions of the individual in order to assign blame to an inanimate object. It is about the willingness of some to give up essential freedoms for the empty promises of security. And, most importantly, it is about the paralyzing plague in this county that is mental illness and our unwillingness to do something about that problem. That is really what has to change.