By David Codrea
USA – -(Ammoland.com)- “Obtaining an assault rifle should be as difficult as becoming a doctor,” Monya De, MD MPH, ridiculously prescribes in Medical Economics. “Not everyone can treat patients legally, and not everyone can hold a person’s life and future in their hands. That’s why we have medical schools and licensure fees and exams and state medical boards—to keep quacks and charlatans from hanging out a shingle.”
I’m glad De’s the one bringing up quacks and charlatans, because that’s some serious irrelevant conflation she’s got going there. Unless one is in the business of selling guns, that is, licensed, they’re not hanging out shingles. And using her “logic,” every one of us with fists and feet needs to pay a fee and get sanctioned by some board. Not that doing so helps, with “medical errors now [the] third leading cause of death … ”
Just from her opening salvo alone, it’s fair to ask if De walks like a duck, because she sure is quacking like one. But wait, as late TV pitchman Billy Mays famously urged, there’s more.
“They are also a public health problem, like cholera, HIV, and meningitis,” she gasps, perhaps from throwing around such a masive non sequitur. “As with polio eradication, we need to get to the point at which they don’t kill or maim anyone.”
All by their own self?
And if that rationale can be used to ban a subclass of a category of firearm that's been used in such a small number of violent crimes, De can’t possibly be OK with handguns remaining legal. But one grab at a time.
‘Assault rifles—which didn’t exist at the time of the 2nd Amendment—amount to a license to kill,” she continues, not one to let a chance for misdirection go to waste.
The first bit of deception is the oft-repeated gungrabber lie that the Founders couldn't have imagined modern guns. The thing is, firearms technology from long before their time included Fourteenth Century multiple-barreled volley guns, and a design by Leonardo DaVinci for a rotating triple-barrel breech-loading cannon. The Founding Era had already seen pepperbox revolvers, Kentucky/Pennsylvania rifles, cartridges to combine shot and powder, the British breech-loading Ferguson rifle, the 11-cylinder crank-operated Puckle gun, and the Girandoni air rifle, capable of firing 22 .46 caliber balls, that had actually been in use by the Austrian army 11 years before the Bill of Rights was ratified.
Why doesn’t highly-qualified professional gun expert Monya De know that? That's what she's pretending to be, right?
As for ownership of any gun being a license to kill, that’s just a flat-out lie designed to spread prejudice, which ought to be a breach of medical ethics. That’s where the real problem arises with apparatchiks like De exploiting their medical credentials to pass their political opinions off as professionally qualified.
Years back, I teamed with the late Joe Horn, a retired Los Angeles Sheriff’s Deputy who had become a risk management professional. Using his “Physicians, Don’t Borrow Trouble” article as a starting point, we developed a form for patients to present to doctors presuming to counsel them on guns.
The form asks them to attest they have reviewed applicable scientific literature pertaining to defensive gun use and beneficial results of private firearms ownership. Alternatively, it asks if they are knowingly engaging in home/firearms safety counseling without credentialing certification, license or formal training in risk management, and to admit if they have not reviewed applicable scientific literature. It asks them to disclose if they are engaged in an activity for which they are not certified, such as Firearms Safety Counseling, and if their medical malpractice insurance carrier will cover lawsuits resulting from neglect and lack of qualification. And it asks them to further warrant that — should a patient follow their advice and someone ends up hurt or killed as a result — their malpractice insurance / personal assets will cover damages resulting from lawsuits.
It’s fair to ask Dr. De why her opinions on guns would be more qualified than her opinion on what to do about that pinging noise from under the hood, or what the mix of mutual funds and high tech stocks in your retirement portfolio should be. Just because she’s (presumably) highly competent in one field doesn’t mean she knows diddly about others. But she’s trading in on her degrees and the forum in which her rant appears to make it look like this is the informed work product of a qualified professional. Unfortunately, those who don’t know any better will be inclined to give her opinions more credence than if she were Monya De, Licensed Cosmetologist.
That’s precisely the quackery/charlatanry she projected on gun owners in her opening flurry of accusations (and as we’ve seen time and again, for “progressives,” every day is Opposite Day). She shouldn’t be allowed to get away with it, at least not without putting her relevant credentialing up for examination and evaluation. That’s especially true because De’s media reach is extensive, and she’s in a position to influence a lot of voters.
Yes, she has an absolute right to put any damn fool lying opinion out there and stump for any edicts that she wants — as a private citizen. But to do so under the imprimatur of her professional licenses is an abuse of why they were approved and issued, and ought to rise to the level of an actionable ethics violation.
For those interested in authoritative information about firearms from medical professionals, check out Doctors for Responsible Gun Ownership. Make it a matter of routine activism to refer journalists to DRGO so they can correct the record whenever you see politically-motivated disinformation about firearms being spread by the establishment medical community.
UPDATE per DRGO:
De demonstrates no qualifications on the subject other than ignorant contempt for gun owners and a gift for self-promotion. She has a checkered past as an actual doctor, having failed to complete her residency training program for the documented reason of incompetence. [See the complete smackdown.]
About David Codrea:
David Codrea is the winner of multiple journalist awards for investigating / defending the RKBA and a long-time gun rights advocate who defiantly challenges the folly of citizen disarmament.
In addition to being a field editor/columnist at GUNS Magazine and associate editor for Oath Keepers, he blogs at “The War on Guns: Notes from the Resistance,” and posts on Twitter: @dcodrea and Facebook.