I previously wrote of fighting the proposed encroachment on our 2nd Amendment Rights using the model of Mothers Against Drunk Driving. This included mandatory punishments for violations of the law, expanding the information available for background checks, and encouraging people to report those who could be a danger if armed.
The push by the Progressives and Liberals to further restrict our 2nd Amendment gun rights continues. Did they feel the same about restricting any of the other rights in the Bill of Rights? Let’s start with the 1st Amendment.
Many citizens were being injured or killed in automobile accidents caused by talking or texting on cellular telephones. Were cellular telephones banned outright? Was an age limit placed on owning a cellular telephone? Were background checks required on anyone wishing to carry a cell phone? Was texting banned? The answer to all of the above is a resounding “NO”. What, then was done.
Law or regulations were put in place to impose a fine on those caught talking on the cell phone or texting while driving. Do they take away your cell phone if you are caught breaking the law? Again, the answer is “no”. You can have all the gadgets in your car you can afford to allow you to continue to talk on the cell phone and text if your cell phone has enough gadgets. To summarize, a costly slap on the wrist is what you can expect regarding the 1st Amendment and cell phone use in automobiles.
Let’s look at the use on the internet, an excellent example of our exercise of the 1st Amendment right to free speech. It has been widely reported in the news of the cyber bullying that has led to citizens/students committing suicide or hate crimes. What should we do? If you use the standards being used to limit the 2nd Amendment Rights, we will have to do the following:
Place an age limit on those wishing to buy a computer/smartphone or set-up an internet account.
Perform a background check on any purchaser of a computer, Smartphone, or anyone seeking internet access.
Limit access to social media sites.
Require a special permit to have a computer/smartphone that is concealed from view.
Limit the speed and storage capacity of hard drives and SD cards.
Take away wireless capabilities for internet access.
Ban use the internet for life of anyone convicted of bullying or causing a death or injury to another.
Do you think this is ridiculous? It is exactly what the Middle Eastern countries are doing to their citizens. Their citizens are also disarmed. How is that working out for them?
Food for thought…..
Protect Our Current 2nd Amendment Rights
I listened to a liberal Congressman state that to push for stricter gun control they need a grassroots push like MADD, Mothers Against Drunk Drivers. The more I thought about it, the more I became to believe the MADD model was a perfect model FOR Second Amendment Rights as they are currently written.
What did MADD do to reduce drunk driving? There was a push to ensure clerks checked the identification of liquor purchasers. They didn’t outlaw liquor nor did they try to limit how much or what kind of liquor people could purchase. Cars were not outlawed nor were they limited on the amount of horsepower of an engine. They pushed for stricter punishments and mandatory punishment for drunk drivers. Law enforcement keeps track of those convicted of drunk driving and the punishment escalates as the law breakers continue their drinking and driving. The other push by MADD was to encourage the public to call 9-1-1 and report suspected drunk drivers. The bottom line is that they got stricter laws, punishments, and the “see something, say something.”
This is the ideal model for gun violence control. We don’t need to limit the number or types of guns and ammunition law-abiding citizens can purchase. Stricter, mandatory punishment for violations is essential. A felon in possession of a gun cannot be plead down to a misdemeanor and given probation. District Attorneys and Judges cannot have discretion on filing or punishments. I personally have seen felons picked up for possession of a firearm, let out of jail within 10 days and given probation. Within a month, they were picked up for the same offense and given a probation sanction of up to 30 days. This is an unacceptable situation.
Fixing the background check systems has to be accomplished. If the background information is up-to-date and includes mental health issues, we would keep many guns out of the hands of those most likely to illegally use a gun. Background checks should include gun shows. Even California, with its tough gun laws, admits that they are 40,000 people behind in disarming people who they know have guns and have been adjudicated with felonies or mental health issues.
Finally, the public must be encouraged to speak up and report persons known to be antisocial or mentally ill. Mental health and law enforcement would be required to follow through like they do for reports of drunk drivers. In the vast majority of the mass murders recently, had anyone who knew the person was “odd”, antisocial, or mentally ill reported it and mental health or law enforcement had done a follow-up immediately, perhaps we would have averted the tragedies.