By David Codrea
USA – -(Ammoland.com)- Two recent advocacy pieces by Second Amendment stalwarts I support have contained a call to government action that actually works counter to our interests. It’s a call that many gun owner rights advocates have innocently repeated over the years, taking their lead from NRA. It’s a call we should soundly reject that says:
We don’t need new gun laws. Enforce the laws on the books.
The first part, true enough. The second part, let’s talk about…
We see it in a five point plan proposed by Rep. Dave Brat, the true conservative who ousted RINO Eric Cantor in Virginia (to the fury of Republican establishment elites), which starts out with four improvements:
First, the House should take up and pass Concealed Carry Reciprocity…
Second, the House should take up and pass H.R. 2001, the “Veterans 2nd Amendment Protection Act”…
Third, Congress should reel in the administrative state by passing H.R. 2710 the “Lawful Purpose and Self Defense Act”…
Fourth, block any and all attempts to pass legislation that could jeopardize individual’s due process through secret government watch lists…
Right on. Yay, Rep. Brat! But then there’s this:
Anti-gun politicians and presidential administrations can’t call for the expansion of the NICS system, but then neglect their duty to enforce current law.
He’s referring to prospective gun buyers rejected by NICS. He’s correct that the government rarely prosecutes when prohibited persons stupidly try to get a gun through an FFL and lie on the transfer form. And true, it’s useful pointing that out to show the gun-grabbers are insincere about stated “common sense gun safety” goals, and instead just want to keep adding incremental disarmament edicts until they get everything they want.
But we have to ask ourselves if we as gun owner rights advocates really want the feds to enforce existing gun laws. Disregard for a moment the prevalence of “false positives.” Let’s get to more basic questions:
Regardless of what our government “leaders” claim about Constitutionality, who can really honestly defend requiring prior restraints on gun transfers as a legitimate delegated function – let alone a “duty” — that comports with the Bill of Rights-mandated “shall not be infringed” proscription?
And doesn’t all credible real world experience demonstrate that “gun control” doesn’t work? Why is it in the vested interests of freedom advocates to surrender that point and volunteer the opposite, especially in the absence of anything but disarmament agenda talking points to argue otherwise? Now we’re saying background checks work? While at the same time we’re fighting Michael Bloomberg’s efforts to bamboozle state electorates into voting for them?
That’s what’s happening right now in Nevada, as our friends at Nevadans for State Gun Rights fight a valiant battle against Bloomberg’s funded-by-elites Question 1. They properly challenge Clark County District Attorney Steve Wolfson for supporting the new registration-enabling measure while noting “the lack of evidence that prohibited transfers are prominent in our community.” But then they take the next step, one that’s unnecessary and that can play right into the “Nevadans for Background Checks” argument:
“The focus of the initiative is to keep honest gun owners from transferring their guns to prohibited possessors. This is already prohibited under Nevada State law. We should be enforcing our current state laws rather than creating new laws that will only affect law abiding citizens.”
The inconvenient truth of the matter – even if no one wants to admit it – is that anyone who can’t be trusted with a gun can’t be trusted without a custodian. Barring that, no “background check” or other unworkable prohibition will keep them from harming others, or from getting their hands on whatever weapons they want. To maintain otherwise is to deny observable reality, and to open the door to controlling those who neither want nor need to be controlled.
It also bolsters the meme that this is about crime control instead of citizen control.
Demanding that government “enforce existing gun laws” is more than a bit like calling on King George to enforce existing Intolerable Acts. We'll get no points from the gun-grabbers for being “reasonable.” We need to grok that we’re up against agents of tyranny who will stop at nothing, who will greedily gobble up whatever we cede to them, and who will then turn around and still accuse us of being uncompromising extremists.
We’ve all seen horror stories over the years about good Americans who have had their lives destroyed for running afoul of existing gun laws. An endorsement to enforce them represents tacit approval for those prosecutions – and for going after “I will not comply” advocates engaging in the time-honored American tradition of civil disobedience. It means going after every gun owner in California or New York or Connecticut or elsewhere who has refused to register “assault weapons” with hostile state governments, or going after those who commit other acts of defiance.
Lest there be any confusion, this is not an attack piece on Rep. Brat and our friends in Nevada. They deserve our support and gratitude for leadership they have given us.
It’s an appeal. Hopefully they and others will come to see and acknowledge that the unified and committed position needs to be:
Repeal existing gun laws.
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.