How Can Second Amendment Supporters Reshape the Landscape?

Map Updated for 2018

United States of America – -( When the NRA is forced into damage limitation mode – as was the case in 1968 with the Gun Control Act (where it successfully stopped licensing and registration) – much of the reasons for being in that position is the political landscape. In 1968, the assassinations of Martin Luther King Jr. and Robert F. Kennedy had created a massive push for something to be done on guns.

Well, in that case, Lyndon Baines Johnson wanted to make America like New York City in that regard as a response. Thankfully, he had failed, largely because the NRA had a good relationship with the power brokers built up with years of working together and support for incumbent politicians who supported the Second Amendment.

This was how Second Amendment supporters had shaped the landscape in their favor. The payoff was not in a gain, but in limiting the damage – something that can be vitally important. The same thing mattered in the 1980s and 1990s, when senior Democrats helped defeat – or weaken – assaults on our rights. Today, we’ve lost that, and it matters.

When Second Amendment supporters had allies in both parties of Congress, especially in senior positions, it meant that there were firewalls that could help protect our rights no matter who was in charge.  But starting in the late 1990s, anti-Second Amendment extremists either primaried Second Amendment supporters in the Democratic party, or when the Democrats who did value our Second Amendment rights retired, they were replaced by Republicans.

While Republican control enabled passage of legislation like the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act, it obscured a problem: The Democrats emerging in leadership were outright in their hostility to our right to keep and bear arms – see the rise of Jerrold Nadler as a case in point. That became very apparent after the 2012 mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School. The trend has only accelerated, fueled by an elitist billionaire from Manhattan.

But there are other ways to reshape the landscape. One has been going on recently with the judicial confirmation assembly-line run by President Trump and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. For all the complaints about Donald Trump on other areas (bump stocks, personal life, etc.), this is a massive game-changer where he has made a very positive difference – the federal courts are being remade in a pro-Second Amendment fashion, including the Supreme Court.

No wonder New York City wants to dodge a Supreme Court review of its unconstitutional restrictions on bearing arms. There is a reason that anti-Second Amendment extremists are contemplating the naked power grab of packing the court. They know that a series of Supreme Court rulings striking down semi-auto bans would cause a massive shift in the political landscape on Second Amendment issues.

How do we continue to reshape the landscape favorably? First, there will be a need to keep supporting pro-Second Amendment senators and keeping the White House in pro-Second Amendment hands for the next few election cycles. Just the threat of a Supreme Court packed with anti-Second Amendment extremists should keep Second Amendment supporters motivated on this front.

Second, and this will be a longer-term effort, Second Amendment supporters need to work to elect more pro-Second Amendment Democrats. Much of this can come from effective outreach in urban areas and the effective use of foreign-language media. This may be easier than it sounds – especially if thy work in the primaries. Last year, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez beat Joe Crowley by about 4,000 votes in a race where just under 30,000 showed up to vote. In the general election, about 141,000 people showed up.

The third element, the most important, and perhaps the longest effort of all, will be to win the hearts and minds of those who are as yet on the fence with regards to our rights – or even mildly supportive of the other side. We need to have our facts in order, we need to be mindful of how we come across, and we must ensure we have the ability make our arguments.

People may want you to think that trends are set in stone – that the political landscape pertaining to Second Amendment issues cannot be changed. They are dead wrong. It has changed before, and it will change again. Second Amendment supporters must work hard to be the ones who do the reshaping.

Harold Hu, chison

About Harold Hutchison

Writer Harold Hutchison has more than a dozen years of experience covering military affairs, international events, U.S. politics and Second Amendment issues. Harold was consulting senior editor at Soldier of Fortune magazine and is the author of the novel Strike Group Reagan. He has also written for the Daily Caller, National Review, Patriot Post,, and other national websites.

  • 69 thoughts on “How Can Second Amendment Supporters Reshape the Landscape?

    1. The map above is wrong on at least one state. Montana is not an “unrestricted” state, but a “Shall issue” state. Mistakes like this can give anti-gunners cause to discredit everything in an article like this. We need to make sure our facts are all correct.

    2. ” Much of this can come from effective outreach in urban areas and the effective use of foreign-language media.”

      How about we limit the voting franchise and keep people who are likely to vote against our rights OUT of the nation to begin with, preventing them from ever casting a ballot to begin with…Why is that NEVER an opinion?

    3. Firearms are being demonized in the ‘Indoctrination Camps’ we call schools. Stop the PC Culture there and we have won most of not all the battle.

    4. one simple way to solve the 2nd Amendment crisis is to put all the Democrats on one coast and all the Republicans on the other coast what I’m driving at is put all of the criminals on one Coast at all the good people on the other got out of really messed with the Democrats heads up have a good evening

    5. Part of the problem is the states that make it burdensome to get their permits, especially for out of state. And the states that DO NOT recognize reciprocity.

      1. I wonder to my self when there is a mass shooting. Was the shooting planned by some people to make the people of America dislike guns and gun owner’s. This is a question that comes to mind after a mass shooting. To many times there is a massive breakdown in law enforcement. Especially when law enforcement had plenty of woring and time before the shooting We need to have our mind open to this posable fact.

    6. My God Mr. Yates, she lost a child and you are ridiculing her. You have every right to feel the way about guns and wish they were all confiscated but you have no right to be cruel to a parent of a murdered child. Have you no shame.

    7. Ok Harold, you think in your pipe dream that democrats that have guns will support any republican push to save the 2A.
      I can say only in your dreams, it would not be “progressive” to side with republicans and the daily memo would not allow them to do such. You know, they have to march in lock step. Your idea would be great but as divided as this country is, it ain’t going to happen.

      1. It’s true that I can’t bring myself to vote for any national level R candidate I’ve seen in the last 20 years or so. But I won’t vote for anti-gun D’s either.

        I don’t need to give Rs the double-dip flip. Not voting D is equivalent to Rs picking up a vote in my battleground state since I voted a straight ticket for Ds the last 20 years.

        1. There will never be a GUN RIGHTS Democrat ever again. Just a few remain but the Democrat Party Pledge is 100% or they are defeated. The billionaire money supporting Democrat Party are pro-people Control and Party loyal and the US Constitution is in the way of their modern hi-tech society and Central Government.

    8. Breaking — PA. Rep. Metcalfe begins measures to IMPEACH Pittsburgh Mayor for willful violation of State Preemption Law. — Push back Happens !
      See Metcalfe Minute on you-tube.

    9. How can 2A reshapte the landscape?

      1) support common sense control

      If you don’t help come to realistic controls soon the result will be no guns whatsoever. We have clearly passed into a time where gun control is needed. You can help decide how that control happens.

      It can either be something sensible like a tiered licensing system that allows you to have guns, or you can continue with an all or nothing attitude and end with nothing.

      2) use your guns for their stated purpose.

      I always hear that we needs guns for safety for other or the government. Yet our government shits on your rights, especially the 4th amendment, (see the Patriot act) and you sit back and do nothing. The government takes away a right WAY more important than guns and you do nothing.

      If the right to guns is the only right your willing to use guns to protect, you’re just a gun enthusiast and the argument is bullshit.

      Also, don’t praise Trump’s court stuffing. That’s a horrible thing and it assuredly will backfire in the long run. He has set a dangerous precident.

      1. The 2nd Ammendment is the second most important amendment. The ability to defend yourself is paramount to guaranteeing the rights aren’t further encroached upon. The government spying on my browser history and phone conversations, due to corporate ownership of user data, can hardly qualify as a violation of the fourth. Even if the Patriot act was repealed, they would just use the tech companies to spy on you as they already do.

      2. @ Steve Gates The only way “gun control” would work is if God himself would impose the control. So far, as the Bible states, we have a right to protect ourselves, loved ones and property. That is the “gun control” afforded to us by our creator. You have to control your gun and not allow it to shoot randomly. I have owned guns for sixty years or more and not one of them have gone off half cocked, like your statement has.

        1. Luke11:21-22
          21When a strong man, fully armed, guards his house, his possessions are secure. 22But when someone stronger attacks and overpowers him, he takes away the armor on which the man relied, and then he divides up his plunder.

      3. I’m not sure if you’re serious or trolling.

        No 1 is a capitulation to evil, and knuckles under to the concept of “Common Sense” gun laws. To suggest that realistic controls and gun control is needed show that you have no concept of the Constitution or are in open defiance of it. You are suggesting a slow decline into darkness with the tiered licensing that leads to confiscation. We do NOT need to submit to control, we need to oppose it to our last breathes. It is a question of living on your knees or dying on your feet. Crawl if you will, I will not.

        No 2 sounds like a great idea, to fight a tyrannical over-reach of government, but that isn’t what you meant. There are no rights more important than the 2nd Amendment, it is what supports all the others. You are right that the gov in attacking the 4th Amendment, but it is attacking most of the original amendments and THAT is what makes the 2A so much more important at his point.

        We started out with 6 judges in the SCOTUS, then it was STUFFED by CONGRESS to 7 in 1807, to 9 in 1837, then to 10 in 1863. Congress passed the Judicial Circuits Act of 1866, dropping the number from 10 to 7 by attrition, to stop Andrew Johnson from nominating any justices. Only 2 Justices left the court, so in 1869 they added one back to make it 9. The Judiciary Act of 1869 made that number official. You should read some history books.

        Trump did not “stuff” the court. He replaced an originalist judge with one who was hoped to be an originalist, and one who was expected to have been an originalist when he was nominated by one who was hoped to be an originalist by some when he was nominated. ALL of the judges should be originalists, that is their job description. NONE of them should be activists. It turns out that neither of his nominations have been as pure originalist as they should have been, one much less so. He was warned about this before their confirmation, but chose to go with them anyway.

        The SCOTUS is supposed to consider whether the laws it is reviewing are in agreement with the Constitution. It is NOT supposed to consider how the laws impact other things or whether they personally agree with them. This is the crux of the problem. Ever since Justice Storey and Mr Hamilton colluded to get around the Constitution, the SCOTUS has been in an activist role and instituting a power grab from the other branches of the government.

        All that you have done is show you political agenda and lack of understanding of our system of government. I’ve made my conclusion, get thee gone, troll.

        1. Dave in Fairfax, well said brother! Sadly though l know of 6 People who did not get out the vote in the midterms. And two of them don’t feel that their votes count anyway. We need simply to change that and get them off their asses on election day!! # 2aAllday

    10. As the parent of a Murdered Child, STAY THE H out of my 2nd Amendment Rights. My child was Ambushed and BEAT to death with a 2 ft section of 4 x 4 Fence Post so some SOCIOPATH could get his jollies to see what it was like to kill a Child with the Physical and Mental make up of a 12 year old. My Friend a year later had her 8 year Beat, RAPED, Strangled unconscious with her own shoelaces, tied in a old blanket and thrown off a boat dock to Drown. He left his DNA inside her. 2 Jury trials found him worthy of the Death Penalty, he still sits on Tennessee Death Row 25 yrs later doing State Appeals.

      1. I am very sorry for the loss of your child and your friends child. I pray that the good Lord has given you the strength and comfort of his promise. to never leave or forsake those who trust in him.

      2. So where was the gun protecting him at?

        I would say your gun rights played no role and with or with them the scenario would have been the same.

        So how is the defense for 2A?

        1. Sick puppy aren’t you.
          Antagonizing a grieving parent. Pray that you are never in her position.
          If the child had been armed things *might* have been different. If a parent could watch over their child 24/7/365 they would be safer, but that isn’t possible or even laudable.
          Kids need to learn to take care of themselves and that results in risk. The world isn’t safe, never has been, never will be. Guns equalize the danger sometimes, but not always. If you can, you better your odds, but you NEVER pick on people who are hurting unless YOU are a POS.

        2. I know this will come a a shock to all you ANTI GUN WIZZARDS but in any given year as many as 3-4 times MORE people are stabbed to death than are murdered by all long rifles combined , but we don’t try to outlaw forks.One recent year l looked at ( from the C.D.C. ) showed the total number of deaths from all long guns was just over350. That’s ( AR 15’s, AK 47’s, hunting rifles and shotguns etc..) Compared to just under 1,500 total number of deths from FORKS!! The way to protect the gazelle from the cheetah is NOT to cut off it’s horns!!!

    11. So you are pro NRA terrorist support; support of mass murders of public school kids and other public places. Your gun priveleges do NOT supercede anybody else’s RIGHT TO LIFE. That is not extreme, it is just as logical as airport security instituted after 9/11. When people misuse their rights abd privileges, we all lose them.

      1. The NRA doesn’t kill people, people kill people. You have the right to live and you also have the right to defend yourself within reason. That’s the cost of living in a free society. I understand your point of view. But I don’t want to rely on a man or woman to protect me. Most Americans have a false sense of security. And think they are safe because they are in a gun free zone. Once they take one of our rights the rest will follow. How would you resist oppression and dictators… Voting? Protesting? I think not

      2. Actually, if you will take the time to do the research instead of belching crap like most anti-gunners, you will find that most multiple killings were done by……… wait for it……… Democrats!

      3. Our gun RIGHTS are what PROTECT everybody else’s “right to life.” BTW, we don’t “support” these mass murderers, we wish we were there to STOP them BEFORE they committed their crimes. Why do you never hear of CCWs stopping a mass murder? Because they were STOPPED BEFORE the mass murder occurred.

      4. And your feelings do not supersede our constitutionally protected rights! They are not gun “privileges”, they are God given, inherent, and protected rights! Your right to feel however you want about guns does not come before my right to protect myself, and you if that situation were to arise, with a gun. Sorry but taking my gun, and thus leaving me vulnerable, just so you can feel better, IS VERY EXTREME and completely illogical. Its like someone with a fear of needles calling for total bans on them so they can feel better attempting to never have to come into contact with one, even at the price of everyone else’s wellbeing that comes from needles for everything from a lifesaving blood transfusion to a simple flu shot. Calling for everyone to lose their gun rights because a tiny number of them misused a gun, is as absurd as it gets! Thatd be like calling for no more cars because people speed and cause fatal accidents. Also, the overwhelming majority of these people who used guns to murder, didnt “misuse” their gun rights to do so, they already didnt have the right to own or use a gun for varying reasons from mental deficiency to being felons, and acquired the gun illegally! So how exactly would revoking everyones rights to a gun help anything?!?! Its literally like taking everyones vehicle to prevent car theft! It makes no sense! Punishing the law abiding, for the actions of criminals, who by definition couldnt care less about the legality of their actions or the items used to commit those actions, is the epitome of backwards thinking! Calling gun owners who support the NRA terrorists and implying we support mass murder does nothing but show your ignorance on the issue. You are disgusting using mass murders to further your political agenda. Bad people will always do bad things, wether with guns or bombs or u-haul trucks. Punishing the law abiding by taking away their right to protect themselves with a gun does nothing but make you feel better! Until, of course, you or someone close to you, are mugged or raped and are not able to exercise your right to self preservation by being armed! Police officers, or anyone else for that matters, jobs are NOT to protect you! Their job is to enforce law and bring to justice those who break it. The job of protecting ones self and loved ones from harm lies with them, and them alone! You subvert the point, are counterintuitive to actually helping prevent and decrease violence, (single or mass, shooting, stabbing, or any other kind of violence) which all gun owners and 2A supporters also wish to do, (shocking, I know, to hear that all gun owners are not inbred racist murderers.) and become incredibly disingenuous when you revert to name calling about those who support 2A in opposition to your views.

        1. While I am a Christian, my “Right” to keep and bear arms was never granted by God. It is given to me in my Constitution and Bill of Rights. It is that which I have sworn to protect and defend. I generally agree with the remainder of our diatribe.

      5. God gave you the tools for life, liberty, and the persut of happiness. If you choose not to use those tools it is no one’s fault but your own. Get out of the way.

      6. You don’t know what you’re talking about you’re hoping to spread anti-gun manure and hope no one will challenge your lies. “Gun privileges” aka 2nd Amendment you say, is that the same as you Freedom of speech privilege aka 1st Amendment PL?

        Here’s a List of Mass Shootings the FBI Was Warned Of, But Failed to Prevent.

        TSA fails most tests in latest undercover operation at US airports.

      7. There is no right to life dumbass. You have the right to experience life (be born), the right to live your life as you choose (with the exception of being a psychopath), and you have the right to defend your life. Allow me to explain:
        For this, we will look at the supposed “right to life” that you liberals use in this debate (interesting as it goes out the window when you all are talking about abortion). And we will look at the 1st and 2nd amendment as comparison examples. We will view these examples in such a way that man will not be a source of interference.

        1st amendment example:

        You can go out into the woods and yell at trees. You can write a story about trees. You can bring your friends with you out into the woods to yell at trees. And you can worship trees. No one will stop you from doing these things, not even nature itself.

        2nd amendment example:

        You can go out into the woods carrying a gun. You can bring your friends out into the woods to carry guns. You can chop down trees with fucking shotguns. Nature will not stop you. And people won’t stop you as long as you’re abiding by the law.

        “Right to life” example:

        You can go out into the woods and sit on the ground and no one will stop you. However, in order to stay out in the woods, you must find shelter, or risk dying of exposure. You must find food in order to avoid dying of starvation. And you must find water in order to avoid dying of dehydration. You will probably get sick if you get bit by the wrong insect, or eat the wrong vegetation. And if a bear comes along and decides it doesn’t like you, you have three options: die, run, or fight.


        Every aspect of “life” needs to be maintained in order to for that life to continue. You can be born (experiencing life). You can live life in the woods if you want to (living life how you choose). But in order to keep breathing you must fight to survive by gathering resources and avoiding the risk of becoming a meal for predators (defending your life). If you had the right to life, nature wouldn’t allow the bear to kill you. If you had a right to life, you could literally choose not to get sick. If you had the right to life, you could choose not to eat, drink, or sleep with no risk of ill effects.

        The laws of men do not give men rights. The laws of nature do.

        As for being born, if a pregnant woman is left to her own accord and is healthy, and doesn’t exert or harm herself, the baby will most likely be born. It takes some sort of outside interference to cause complications with a pregnancy (yes, the woman’s health is an outside force in this case due to the fact that a baby is a separate entity). As such, nature dictates that an unborn child has the natural right to experience life.

        *Caveat to living life as you choose:

        We as a society (unanimously) decided that being a psychopath and killing people or hurting them is not ok and as such the right itself has reasonable limits. This is not the case with the other two rights because society as a whole has not come forward to place limits on them, usually with a vast majority believing that placing said limits would do more harm than good.

      8. “When people misuse their rights abd(sic) privileges, we all lose them.”

        That’s not how rights work. In fact, that’s probably the defining distinction between rights and privileges. Does the word ‘inalienable’ mean anything to you? Crack open a book for once.

      9. Wrong, PL! Your “Right to Life” is exactly and precisely the same as mine! I will not interfere with you defending your life as you decide to do so, but I will not allow you to (in point-of-fact, you flatly and damnably-well WILL NOT) make that decision for me!!!! I – and I alone – will decide how I specifically defend myself and my family. If you don’t like it… go to hell – and commit an act of auto-eroticism on the way!

        No matter what you say, I do not have gun “privileges,” you waste-of-human-skin… I have gun RIGHTS, exactly as every other responsible citizen has. And despite your ridiculous ravings, simply exercising a right is NOT “misuse” of that right. If you cannot or will not understand the foregoing, then you are too rock-stupid to be out in public without a keeper.

        Just go away. You may have a 1st Amendment right to speak, but there is NO requirement of any kind for sane adults to 1) support, 2) agree with, or 3) even listen to… your inane drivel.

    12. Once again Hutchinson is milquetoast on gun rights. He glosses over the bump stock issue and totally bypasses Trumps stand on red flag laws. With 2A “friends” like this mole, who needs enemies?

    13. Other countries are fighting to have rights..the left is fighting to surrender all our rights fast as possible…ps there is no weapon of war..

      1. I read your article being it popped up in my feed. Personally, I have no need for any type of gun. I live in an urban setting and don’t feel threatened. The thought process of gun activists seems somewhat twisted with a warped sense of reality. I get it, your perception is your reality. My question to you, why dId you allow a the NRA to purchase your fear?

        1. You’re a moron Jill. You think everyone lives in a utopian crime free zone like you believe you do?? The world is dangerous and governments are the most dangerous thing man has ever come up with. Did the demonRAT party buy your fear of guns? If you become a crime victim, you’ll get what you deserve. Go away idiot.

          1. @OV, Jill Ringneck is just going by her feelings. She feels no threat, but does not realize that her situation can pivot on a dime. Everything she knows could be gone in an instant. Perhaps she places her security in the hands of government, the local PD, or significant other and the family dog. What does, “… why dId you allow a the NRA to purchase your fear?” even mean?
            Best regards to Sammy?

        2. Common sense control means No guns at all to the Democrats. Democrats have been in favor of courts being stuff with Liberal anti gun Judges for decades. How is Trump setting a dangerous precedent by doing the same thing Clinton and Obama done. People like you hate Trump because he’s not a push over like all the other Republicans are. He stands up for what he believe and will fight for it.

    14. This author always seems concerned about legislative and judicial actions in favor of the Second Amendment. That is not going to happen. We are way past that. Those actions should have happened 40 years ago. And more like a hundred years ago. Civil war is coming and we better damn well prepare for it. People start raising your malicious and get quality people in it. You are going to need sheet metal workers, electricians mechanics, Electronics technicians, Engineers doctors, nurses, welders and all of them are going to have to be familiar with tactical operations. We need to start training up militias in all 50 states. Wherever you have a constitutional Sheriff engaged him to be part of that militia. He can be the civilian oversight. Also you’ll need the equivalent of our founding fathers Committees of safety which basically operated as a government when we took over the local governments during the revolution. For the love of God, start preparing. Civil war is coming and it is coming in less than 15 years and maybe less than 10.

      1. Winning “hearts and minds” and psy-ops are both critical elements of any struggle. To ignore their importance and the effort required to implement them invites failure or protracted struggle or both.

        1. The “hearts and minds” strategy worked so will in Vietnam. Getting facts straight and presenting them in a concise, calm and logical manner to those “on the fence” is very important and should always be the plan. However, when dealing with the hard-core antis, liberals and Democrats any attempt at logic and common sense using facts is “pearls before swine”.

          1. Roy,

            Since their giblets have been removed – blown off, I think (remember, that’s why they are liberals in the first place)… is that what happened to their hearts and minds, too?

      2. I keep hearing all this talk about Civil War. I scratch my head over it. It must depend on where you live. I believe that if IT comes to that, some variation of Civil War, some will fight, but in reality, most will not.

        Most will not even their cell phone down. I see it daily. I see it everywhere I go. At the store, at the gym, on the street, at the Bus stop, etc. etc. etc. This past winter, many were snowed in, even when they owned a snow shovel. Takes two hands to shovel snow. Takes two hands to effectively operate a Firearm, the key word here is (Effectively). It also requires a mental attitude of resolve and physical exertion and effort.

        If Gooberment wanted to mess things up, all they have to do is shut the power off. Most people wont make it 48 hours without the cell appendage. They will pick a battery charger of Food, Water and Ammo, forget about the shovel, and reloading…because it takes two hands.

        1. Mr. Walkker, that is probably true of most people in urban or even suburban areas, but I can assure you there are many of us that are willing and able to fight… With both hands. When the shtf many more will follow.. I wouldn’t discount the will of the people just yet. I do understand your position on this, but I hope and believe it will change when actual war happens.

        2. @Mr. Walker…I was going to ask you if you thought this generation would fight if you took their cell phones , but you round about answered your own question.

        3. You sound like a city boy,that’s all the city people know cell phones,i-pods,computers,thats not how it is in the country brother,remember your ancestors, living off the land for you city boys will be hard,many people laugh at people in the country but when the pop hits the fan we will be the ones laughing, God Bless if you believe in him.

        4. I can attest from experience that this is 100% true of most people. I have been down in Puerto Rico for the last two years, and I lived here through hurricane Maria and the aftermath. Without power and water, people literally flipped their shit. That first week when absolutely no one had cell reception drove these millennials fucking nuts. Interestingly enough it also had an effect on older generations as well, as suicide became the only option for some. Robbing and looting became the opportunity for others. Doesn’t matter if you live in the city or out in the sticks… Once the luxury goes away and you are forced to survive, you will see what you as a person amount to.

      3. @Sam Adams, How will you coordinate all those people and activities without secure comms? If your hypothetical civil war happened, how would your feed and cloth all those persons? Do you have a target list?

    15. Here’s how to reshape will not comply to unconstitutional, want to be laws. Take stand on the constitution not the court system. Kick out unConstitutional people problem solved

    16. All American Patriots need to know that Citibank does Not like the 2nd USA Constitution Amendment, and Will stop doing business with Anyone that makes, buys or sells Any firearms……

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