Gun Rights

A Liberal War on Guns Is Not the Answer to Mass Killings

It'll eviscerate not just the Second Amendment, but much of the Constitution

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Jimmy Kimmel is totally right that had the Las Vegas shooter turned out to be "someone with a beard," conservatives would be making ill-advised calls to "tap

Guns
Erik Mcgregor/ZUMA Press/Newscom

phones" "invoke travel bans" and "build walls." But that doesn't mean that his—and his fellow liberals—calls for more gun control regulations are any wiser. If anything, if liberals want to get truly serious about ridding America off guns, more stringent gun regulations won't cut it. They'll need to launch a full-blown war on guns.

And if you think the conservative war on terrorism is a draconian attack on American liberties, the liberal war on guns will be many time worse in a country where "you can get my gun when you pry it from my cold dead hands" bumper stickers are a thing. No matter how much liberals want a gun-free paradise, they can't simply wish away a deeply entrenched gun culture, I note in my column at The Week. They'll have to be prepared to get every bit as nasty with American gun owners as conservatives want to get with American Muslims.

Indeed, if liberals call off their "truce with the Second Amendment"—as The New Yorker's Adam Gopnik is hectoring them to do—they will inevitably have to give up on the rest of the constitution too.

But the worst part is that none of this will actually stop the Stephen Paddocks of the world from going on a killing spree. To stop that from happening, we ned a paradigm shift and focus less on preemptively thwarting prospective attackers and instead work on boosting the defensive capacities of prospective victims.

Go here to read the piece.

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  1. Always shocking to read a Shikha article that I mostly agree with.

    1. Is this one of those ‘broken clocks are right twice a day’ things?

  2. “They’ll have to be prepared to get every bit as nasty with American gun owners as conservatives want to get with American Muslims.”

    Pretty sure a gun confiscation program would involve nastiness at orders of magnitude higher than whatever Shikha is imagning of conservatives

    1. They’ll ask themselves, “What would Stalin do?”, and then get worse from there.

    2. It’d make it much easier to SWAT someone.

      Just report them for illegal gun ownership.

      1. Can’t believe that is well over 30 years ago now. Haven’t seen much of Henry lately

    3. Good ol’ Molyneux reminds us–though we shouldn’t need reminding–that a gun confiscation program would require…GUNS! Lots of them.

  3. “Jimmy Kimmel is totally right that had the Las Vegas shooter turned out to be “someone with a beard,” conservatives would be making ill-advised calls to “tapGuns phones” “invoke travel bans” and “build walls.””

    As for tapping phones (and other forms of electronic and digital surveillance), I’m pretty sure that’s already a thing, thanks to bipartisan support.

    Trump has already attempted travel bans and a Mexican wall (the latter, at least, is not solely aimed at people with beards).

  4. Jimmy Kimmel is totally right that had the Las Vegas shooter turned out to be “someone with a beard,” conservatives would be making ill-advised calls to “tapGuns phones” “invoke travel bans” and “build walls.”

    Hey, remember after Orlando, when an Islamic guy with a guy did something like this (with a similar scale of deaths, just far fewer injuries), when the GOP turned the nation into something out of “V for Vendetta”? Oh wait…

    Stick to interviewing dirty old men about their underwear, Kimmel.

    1. It’s a shit argument anyway. Complete whataboutism. If A did it the other side would want to subsume civil liberties. Thus we are justified in subsuming civil liberties on case B.

    2. No, they just voted for a guy who proudly demanded a “total and complete shutdown of Muslim immigration”, liked the idea of spying on mosques, and whose first iteration of a travel ban denied entry even to legitimate visa holders.

      I mean, you can’t have it both ways. Your typical Trumpian GOP voters really do have a problem with Muslims. The fact that they haven’t (yet) created a dystopia in order to satisfy their antipathy doesn’t mean that they are willing to sing kumbaya with Muslims.

      1. The GOP stormed into power in two historic midterms years before Trump’s presidential run, and the country endured its share of Islamic terrorism. Did they win on some mandate to tap Muslims and ban immigration? The tea party was active at the time and the driving issue was Obamacare and government spending.

        Trump won because his unapologetic brand of “America first” and anti PC populism brand resonated in a number of swing states. There are any number of anti illegal immigrant, “anti Muslim” advocates like Pam Gellar or Arapio who would never win an election. Trump is a rare “I’m gonna go there” candidate. If he thinks NFL kneelers are SOBS, he’ll say it. If he think BLM demonizes cops, he’ll stand by cops. He’ll cross some lines in doing this, but that has a certain amount of appeal.

        There can’t be any meaningful “dystopia” in America as long as the checks and balances exist. But as you can you see from Obamacare, due process issues on campus, the continuous push for singe payer and unconstitutional no fly lists, any attempt to overhaul society mostly comes from the left. Since the end of the Bush era the conservatives lost some zeal for Patriot Act-esque policies. Enough to eventually vote for a man who trashed George Bush and the Iraq War in a debate.

        1. Trump won because

          Hillary is actually worse than him. That’s all.

      2. I would be tickled to have muslims around if Islam didn’t have such violent xenophobic tendencies. Muslims, when in large numbers, have a real problem getting along with their neighbors. Even other Muslims. Which is why a lot of people decided to support a candidate who promised to help cut the down on the importation of devotees of said violent, xenophobic religion.

        In other words, the problem isn’t with Trump supporters, but with you progressives.

    3. Exactly. Orlando and San Bernadino both involved Muslims, and you know what conservatives did? Nothing.

      1. Except vote for the most anti-Muslim anti-PC candidate for president.

        Once again: absence of a right-wing dystopia is not proof of Republican love for Muslims.

        1. love?
          Tolerance is sufficient.

          1. More like “seething contempt that occasionally veers into outright bigotry”.

            Back in 2016, 84% of Trump supporters favored Trump’s campaign statements about banning Muslims from entering the country entirely.

            So yes, conservatives did respond to Orlando and San Bernardino – by voting for their preference to see Muslims completely banned from entering the country entirely.

            1. But the larger point here, is that because we don’t currently see pogroms against Muslims committed by Republicans, does not necessarily mean that a great many Republicans don’t have feelings of antipathy or bigotry against Muslims.

              1. sounds almost like the definition of tolerance.

              2. Hey Jeff, it isn’t ‘bigotry’ when it’s rooted in fact. Besides, based on the totality of your statements, I would say you’re the bigoted one.

            2. not sure about the 84%, but fair point

  5. Australia’s love affair with guns is nowhere as strong as America’s ? which is why Australia doesn’t have the Second Amendment to begin with and America does.

    Shikha MDH.

    1. Australia’s love affair with sheep, on the other hand…

    2. This is so stupid. The Second Amendment was based on English rights of the time, which Australia also inherited. The reason neither England nor Australia has a Second Amendment is because they don’t have an effective bill of rights, which in turn is because they’re a monarchy. Has nothing to do with culture.

      1. It does have to do with culture. The English and most of the former British Empire have always had a monarchy. They treat royalty like…well… royalty. Obedience to one’s Lord and oaths of fealty may be given intellectual short shrift by modern Brits but they still can’t get rid of the emotional attachment to the empire and, of course, to the “emperor”.

        For Brits rights come from the monarch, not from nature. Look at how Edmund Burke went ballistic when the French executed their monarch. For him the end of the French monarchy was the end of civil society. The British class system comes from people who “knew their place” in the order of things and unfortunately, many still do.

        Our classes were more fluid and not hereditary. That’s part of the reason that we codified rights and they didn’t.

        1. Not just the English and British Empire descendants such as Australia but all of European culture. Europe still respects titles, and as a result the little people know their place. So they accept the limitations on freedom as perfectly natural. Natural law to us means people are free. Natural law in Europe means commoners serve someone with a title. Once it was a king or queen. Today it’s a European Union. The result is the same.

          1. Pretty much. I’ve long thought of the current European order as neo-feudal. Instead of dukes and barons, the modern aristocracy consists of ministers and secretaries. But whatever you call them, the elites still rule, and the masses occasionally grumble, but mostly just obey.

            This mindset is why I fully expect the UK to squander the opportunity provided by Brexit. Instead of taking some control of their own lives, Brits will merely exchange rule by faceless, unaccountable bureaucrats in Brussels for rule by faceless, unaccountable bureaucrats in London. Bending the knee to a foreign tyrant may be unbearable, but genuflecting to your own home-grown tyrant is just, proper and natural.

      2. Said culture being based on the concept that the lower classes had to be unarmed as far as possible while allowing them to harvest fields. Why do you think all the old movies had the castle being stormed by peasants with pitchforks, scythes, and torches. Weapon control, not just gun control was part of British culture. Most guns were held by the upper class, at first due to costs, then due to significant penalties for use of a firearm in any crime. As the classes in society were broken down (aided by wars requiring arming and training of the common folk), and the lower classes could earn enough to buy guns, the problem grew. Lacking a bill of rights, Britain was able to enact progressive ‘gun control’ laws to the point of elimination of private ownership. Likewise Australia, with (attempted) complete confiscation. In the USA, due to the bill of rights, it is taking a bit longer, and when confiscation is attempted, there will be the third rebellion.

  6. They’ll have to be prepared to get every bit as nasty with American gun owners as conservatives want to get with American Muslims.

    Where have conservatives gotten nasty to American Muslims? Exaggerated claims only hurts your own arguments

  7. Now wait Shikha. You are supposed to be a progtard shill just parroting liberal progressive opinion. So what are you doing criticizing gun control? Don’t you want to get re-invited to cocktail parties? Huh? Huh??????

    1. You must have missed where she agreed with Kimmel that conservatives are horrible hypocrites.

      1. That’s because they are horrible hypocrites.

        1. Incorrect.

          1. Let me guess. You believe Republicans support the Second Amendment out of a deep and abiding respect for natural rights?

            1. then what explains the support?

              1. Because FYNQ. They have the guns and they aren’t giving them up. It’s pretty much that simple.

                1. Yeah maybe. Seems Americans act as if those inalienable natural rights are a birthright. Nothing more highminded than that.

                  1. “…Americans act as if those inalienable natural rights are a birthright…”
                    How very dare we?

                2. Liberals don’t have guns. They have bodyguards who have guns.

                3. Christ, you’re such an unoriginal, unimaginative douchebag Jeff. If i were stuck in a society dominated by conservatives, or a society dominated by your kind, I would go with the conservatives without a second thought. If I had to listen to shit from a bunch of assholes like yourself all the time, I would either be killing them morning to night, or blow my own brains out.

                  Seriously, you’re just a snotty pseudo intellectual bore, projecting your own toxicity onto people who, while flawed, are homogeneously your betters (Which is not saying a lot).

                  1. And you’re a corpsefucking a thread.

        2. No Jeff, you’re a horrible hypocrite, and a bigot, and a progressive.

    2. She thinks people armed with a concealed pistol could have taken out a shooter 30 floors above at half-a-mile. If this is the current best theory behind the moat guns less crime crowd they be a hurtin’ bad.

      1. I think 2 things are clear

        1. Nobody suggested that
        2. It isn’t half near as retarded as the progressive notion that these problems will be fixed by gun registrations and secret government “no self defense” lists.

      2. Re: Roberspierre Josef Stalin,

        She thinks people armed with a concealed pistol could have taken out a shooter 30 floors above at half-a-mile.

        It would be a guarantee that a gun prohibition which only the law-abiding would follow would make it quite impossible to stop a shooter 30 floors above at half-a-mile or right there in the floor he’s shooting from.

        Such exceptional cases like the Las Vegas shooting do not become arguments for imposing a wide-ranging policy. Extreme cases make bad law.

      3. She thinks people armed with a concealed pistol could have taken out a shooter 30 floors above at half-a-mile.

        No. It’s that prohibition, in any form, just doesn’t work.

        1. That’s not what she said. This is…

          To stop that from happening, we ned a paradigm shift and focus less on preemptively thwarting prospective attackers and instead work on boosting the defensive capacities of prospective victims.

          Clearly an absurd position given the circumstances.

          I have no real position on gun control legislation and would be fine with the current permissive gun laws or outright gun ownership. I’m apathetic and would leave the determination up to local communities.

          1. Yes, in this particular case it would have been difficult, indeed effectively impossible, for the victims to engage in any kind of immediate self-defense. So, her statement may be “absurd”, if you consider it in the extremely narrow context of one highly unusual event. Considered in the context of the real world, where most criminals are much closer to their victims, it’s perfectly sensible.

  8. Indeed, if liberals call off their “truce with the Second Amendment”?as The New Yorker’s Adam Gopnik is hectoring them to do?they will inevitably have to give up on the rest of the constitution too.

    They gave up on the entire constitution a long time ago.

  9. My argument is with your use of the term “liberal.” The “liberals” aren’t liberal but authoritarian. Libertarians, on the other hand, really are “liberal.” I would expect a Reason writer to fully appreciate these distinctions.

  10. No matter how much liberals want a gun-free paradise, they can’t simply wish away a deeply entrenched gun culture

    No matter how much liberals want a slavery-free paradise, they can’t simply wish away a deeply entrenched slavery culture, amirite?

    1. Slavery is not the same as owning a device that throws slugs very fast. You should reconsider what you’re saying, Equivocatur Maximus.

    2. They couldn’t wish it away. It took massive destruction and the death of 600,000 people at a time when our population was 1/10th of what it is now. Assuming we are using that as a barometer you want to kill 6 million people because your feels are hurt. Oh and btw if every gun death was eliminated it would only take about 200 years to break even on death and destruction.

      You know who else killed 6 million people?

      1. Hillary, by boring them to death.

    3. It took a civil war to end slavery.

      If you want another civil war, try banning guns.

      1. I think there are good arguments to be had questioning the efficacy of gun control laws. I don’t know… I think waiting periods and licenses probably would reduce gun homicide deaths. Maybe. Who knows?

        What I do know is that anyone saying that you should start a civil war because you can no longer stop by and pick up a gun on the way home from work at the local bait, tackle, and gun store is a fucking idiot.

        1. Depends on how you define “homicide”.

          If you mean “murder”, then no. Street criminals (responsible for the majority of American murders) buy guns from street dealers, who get them from straw buyers or burglars. Most domestic murders by middle/upper-class people are with guns already owned, and they can buy a gun off the street or the internet if they need to (not to mention just stab their wife 30 times in lieu of shooting her 5 times). And finally, mass killers are occasionally stymied by background checks (when they’re too thick to use the methods above), but it just forces them to displace to a different method, which- as we learned in Nice in 2016- is sometimes deadlier than their previous plan.

          If you mean “suicide”, however, then yes, but it isn’t worth it. Waiting periods will stop some impulse suicides, but given that hanging is 80% as effective as a gun (86% vs. 69% completion) and most suicides are with already-owned guns, the reduction is too small to offset the denial of self-defense to those who need a gun fast- a woman in New Jersey, for instance, was murdered by her ex-boyfriend while her pistol was in limbo. Meanwhile, screening for suicidal history not only denies previously suicidal people their right to defend themselves now, but also deters gun-owners from seeking psychiatric help- not unlike the TSA encouraging people to drive and die in car accidents in greater numbers than died in 9/11. And of course the NAP respects the right of suicide, FWIW.

    4. Progressivism is all about slavery culture.

  11. But the worst part is that none of this will actually stop the Stephen Paddocks of the world from going on a killing spree. To stop that from happening, we ned a paradigm shift and focus less on preemptively thwarting prospective attackers and instead work on boosting the defensive capacities of prospective victims.

    Laughable. You crazy, lady!

    What weapon besides a concealed howitzer would have taken out a shooter encamped in a hotel 30 floors above at 500 m– even if you could identify where the shooter was, which most of these country music fans couldn’t. Jesus fucking Christ, lady, get a fucking clue.

    1. She was clearly referring to the Mandalay Bay’s private security if you actually RTFA.

    2. Every concert, or other large gathering, should deploy Ma-Duce to every surrounding piece of high ground. If a few innocents go down as collateral damage, so what?

      Get off it people; the probability of any ‘gun control law’ being effective is irrelevant. The second amendment says the right shall not be infringed. No such law is actually constitutional. Either the amendment is repealed, or the gun grabbers need to accept restriction on the first, and shut up.

      Now get on with repeal, and see how it goes.

      1. I really wish more of the grabbers would get on board with Michael Moore and explicitly endorse repealing the 2A. Too bad they’re just bright enough to realize that too much honesty about their real agenda would alienate many “moderates” that can currently be talked into supporting “reasonable” restrictions.

  12. To stop that from happening, we ned a paradigm shift and focus less on preemptively thwarting prospective attackers and instead work on boosting the defensive capacities of prospective victims.

    Or impose the kind of terror state the Left wants to create in which nobody does anything that would place them in bad terms with , but cannot yet until all guns are proscribed.

    1. in bad terms with the secret police….

    2. Ridiculous. Bitch, please.

      1. Yes, you are a ridiculous bitch.

  13. From the linked article:

    So what can be done?

    Employ modest firearm restrictions that can be enforced, sure. But also, encourage private entities to step up their own lines of defense. It is really quite amazing that Paddock could sneak in so much weaponry ? and install security cameras in his room to monitor police activity outside ? completely undetected by the Mandalay Bay. As I have written previously, that kind of thing would never happen in my home country of India, where after the 2011 Mumbai attack, every hotel runs every car, every piece of luggage, and every hand bag through a metal detector. Ditto for movie theaters and malls. Neighborhoods have installed their own private guards.

    So- basically, turning everyday life into multiple encounters with private TSAs? What a fucking great idea. Or alternatively, you could go back to your home country if you long for such things, and leave the rest of us alone. You’re no different from the Californians who leave the shithole they’ve created in their state and as soon as they get settled in their new home, proceed to go to work on turning it into a shithole just like the one they just left.

    1. Oh she is a little different. She has a platform to spout her idiocy on an allegedly libertarian website. I figure we aren’t far away from a weekly Bernie sanders piece on reason.

      1. Allegedly libertarian website? I’d say so.

    2. “Employ modest firearm restrictions that can be enforced, sure.”

      Can I suggest a modest restriction on ‘free speech’? All comments on gun control are prohibited, other than directly for or against repeal of the second amendment of the US constitution.

      Think of all the ones and zeros that would be saved.

  14. The inefficacy of gun registration schemes in stopping murders is well established. Whenever someone talks about “common sense” gun laws what they mean is “We need to know where your guns are so that we can confiscate them later”.

    Soon we’ll hear “If you like your guns you can keep your guns”.

    My guess is that they’ll first make it illegal for anyone to have a gun who has ever made a “hateful” statement. SWAT raids on anyone who accidentally referred to Caitlin Jenner as “he” or ever said “Islam doesn’t seem to be very compatible with individual rights”.

    1. Whenever someone talks about “common sense” gun laws what they mean is “We need to know where your guns are so that we can confiscate them later”.

      Seems to be the way it works. Again, from the linked article:

      “So what can be done?

      Employ modest firearm restrictions that can be enforced, sure.”

      Modest firearm restrictions? Sure? Okay then- what “modest firearm restrictions” would have prevented the shooting in Las Vegas?

      I won’t hold my breath waiting for an answer.

      1. Total confiscation of all firearms not under the control of a left wing government, combined with draconian internal travel controls and total monitoring of all bank accounts. And of course elimination of all gun stores and sporting goods of any kind. A small price to pay for peace in our times.

        Next question?

  15. It’ll eviscerate not just the Second Amendment, but much of the Constitution

    That’s the Left’s goal.

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