I’ve been involved in gun rights activism for over 15 years now and I know that I don’t know everything there is to know about the law, important court cases, and the history of gun control. It shouldn’t be a big surprise to me that others get things wrong but it is.
It wasn’t very long ago that I used to still hear people talk about the Brady Act which banned “assault weapons”. This is wrong. The Brady Act created the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) and a five day waiting period. The waiting period provision disappeared in November of 1998 when the “instant” system went online. It was the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994 which banned certain common firearms because they (mostly) were a default color of black or looked ugly to some people (technically this isn’t correct but it has a very high correlation to how it came about).
Many other people believe all guns are registered with the state and/or Federal government. This is a very common misconception in the mainstream media.
Many people believe machine guns and/or suppressors (call “silencers” by most uninformed people) are illegal. This is false. I’ve had people approach me, all concerned, at Boomershoot to tell me “someone over there has a machine gun“. My response is some variant of, “And your point is?” They appear to be shocked that machine guns are legal and that ninjas won’t be dropping from black helicopters any second. Similar things happen when people bring suppressors to the event. And that is with people attending a shooting event. You would think they would be relatively well informed.
Still, as inured as I am to the state of affairs the number and magnitude of errors in this editorial shocked me:
Chicago outlawed guns in 1982, but residents challenged the law, saying that it violated their constitutional rights. In 2008, the Supreme Court passed a 5-4 ruling on the issue; Chicago’s law was found to be in violation of the second amendment.
Of course it was the D.C. ban, not Chicago’s, that was ruled unconstitutional in 2008.
According to a New York Times article, the 2008 case, District of Columbia v. Heller, limited the federal government’s power to regulate gun ownership.
Since the two rulings, Supreme Court judges have been debating whether these decisions should apply nationally, therefore overruling preexisting state and city laws.
There was only one case, Heller, not two that the Supreme Court has ruled on.
Would this ruling overturn all the safety restrictions about where people can carry guns and who can buy them?
Even the Brady Campaign does not believe this or fear monger a slippery slope to this sort of situation.
Guns are everywhere and it’s never the safe, smart people who respect and follow the laws that lose their minds and come barging into post offices or schools to shoot innocent people.
Uhh… duh! Guns are just as common as recreational drugs. Bans on products for which this is a market are never going to be very effective. And the second part of that sentence seems particularly pointless to me. What are they trying to say?
Why should we make it easier for them to carry guns in public? While the argument behind the supporting the second amendment is about preserving our rights, what about our right to safety?
The writer apparently has not done any research on the topic or would have been aware that safety is one of the biggest claims of the pro-gun people. And “right to safety”? While it is a fairly common misconception that there is some sort of “right” to safety to ask the question is just wrong on so many levels. It presumes two facts not in evidence: 1) There exists a “right to safety”; and 2) Gun restrictions enhance safety.
I have to give the writer credit for that last sentence. That was really a piece of work. Even the classic, “Have you stopped beating your wife?” only presumes one fact not in evidence.