Gun laws not the answer

I have concluded there really is only one way to figure out what our rights should be. Analyze the actual words. Words have meaning. These words were chosen with great brilliance and deliberation. To extract any other conclusion from the words that are written is to intentionally engage in ineffective dishonesty.

Seriously, let’s examine the Second Amendment.

In the first phrase, the dependent clause, many people want to focus on the “militia” aspect. What is a militia? It’s basically an army made up of citizens. You don’t have to have a standing militia to mitigate the possibility you “might” need one and there is nothing in the Constitution that mandates a militia. The only “necessary” part of that clause is “the security of a free state.”

“Arms” are “to carry.” You can’t carry a tank. You can’t carry a thermonuclear weapon. You can’t risk a crowd of citizens with a grenade launcher. Just don’t go there. “Arms” are portable weapons with which you shoot a projectile(s), and the armament to support that weapon.

“Shall not be infringed:” It doesn’t seem very ambiguous to me. Words have meanings. They mean what they say. The Constitution says, “the right to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.” Which of those words is unclear? “Infringed?” What dictionary definition are you using? Saying that you can only have magazines of this size but not that size or “this thing that shoots” but “not that thing that shoots” … that is an infringement.

Wait! Does that mean fully automatic weapons? Yeah, it kind of does. I’ll get to that in a minute.

So, what do I want? What do I believe adheres to the Constitution? I would have an absolutely reliable database by which we can verify criminal and mental history. In that database will be – people who cannot have a gun. That reliable database needs to be easily and quickly accessible by licensed gun dealers. Won’t that allow straw-man purchasing? Yep. Won’t that allow people to sell or give guns to criminals? Uh-huh, it does.

That is a fact of liberty!

Liberty means other people may be able to do something you don’t like, if the Constitution protects it. An AR-15 is an “arm.” A 30-round magazine is “armament.” It may mean a machine gun. Yes… fully-automatic. 100 rounds of ammo is protected. So is 1,000 or 1,000,000.

Getting all freaked out about the inanimate object used to commit a crime is just plain stupid. Freaking out about the type of gun or accessories used to commit a mass murder is like freaking out about cars because of DUIs.

No, it’s not an “apples to apples” comparison, buts it requires the same bad logic.

Slander, libel, “fire” in a theater – those present an immediate and obvious threat or harm to another person. Are you in danger the moment someone buys an AR-15 or a 30-round magazine?

The focus should be on people, not on an inanimate object that has no inherent threat potential. A gun is morally neutral. Morally neutral, with maybe a slight leaning towards “good.” Why? On its own, whether being carried by someone, sitting in a gun safe or lying on a coffee table, a gun presents no apparent threat. Zero. None!

It is a fact the mere possibility of the presence of a gun deters crime (good) and, yes, will attract some crime (evil).

A gun in the hand of a person bent on evil will be used for evil and a gun in the hand of a good person will be used for good, but the gun itself – the “thing” – has no inherent morality.

When that “thing” is not being actively used, then I believe the balance of “good” vs. “evil” tips towards the “good.” How many lives have not been lost because a gun may or may not have been in a home? Our society is done more good by the mere possibility of a gun in a home or a restaurant or a theater than it is done harm when a criminal or a psycho decides this is the day he doesn’t care who gets in their way.

So, how does this address this issue of school shootings or mass shootings, etc? It doesn’t. It simply explains that enhanced gun laws are not the answer and, therefore, a different approach needs to be sought.

James Smith,