In the wake of the recent Arizona shootings, Congressman and House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Peter King (R-NY) is proposing legislation that would make it illegal, with some exceptions, for anyone carrying a firearm to be within 1,000 feet of any member of Congress, as well as various other high ranking federal government officials, including federal judges. It is little wonder why Gun Owners of America (www.gunowners.org) has given this quintessential northeast "RINO" ("Republican In Name Only") a well deserved "F" for an overall grade in protecting our continually endangered Second Amendment rights. Given that King has admitted to colluding on this brainstorm with, of all people, nanny-state, anti-gun liberal New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, we are now getting an even clearer picture as to King's convoluted mindset and tyrannical agenda.
Obviously, the 20,000 existing gun control laws on the books, many of which are not enforced or prosecuted with much if any vigor, are not enough for Congressman King.
One of the people credited with taking down Jared Lee Loughner during his rampage admitted himself that he had a gun with him that day, but it was secured away from the scene in his car. Good boy, nice obedient little citizen. So, how did that plan work out for you?
I am not criticizing this hero, but only trying to vividly illustrate a point. First of all, it takes a lot more guts to take down a gunman when you are unarmed yourself, so kudos to that brave patriot. But the fact remains, had a law abiding citizen been armed at the time of the shooting, maybe at least some of those victims would not be victims today. In fact, on average, approximately two million armed Americans annually stop a violent crime from occurring upon themselves or innocent third parties, and in most instances, without having to fire a shot.
But I also was once acquainted with a teacher, who, obeying the rules under his school's "Zero Tolerance" policy against guns on school property, blames himself for having his gun also locked in his car and off school property the day one of the students came in and started shooting several people. Obviously, the kid didn't get the "Zero Policy" memo.
There have been other such similar instances in which a "no guns" policy was translated into "Open Season" on the people it was foolishly intended to protect. Also living with regrettable her decision is Suzanna Gratia Hupp, a former Texas state legislator and gun rights advocate who was dining in Luby's Cafeteria in Killeen, Texas on October 16, 1991, when a gunman shot up that establishment and killed both of her parents right in front of her. Obeying Texas state law at that time, Hupp's gun was secured in her vehicle in the parking lot, and tragically far out of her reach to save her parents or anyone else. Several years ago, a gunman shot up a Hebrew elementary school in Los Angeles. The gunman later admitted he picked that school because unlike others he had cased, it had no visible armed security of any kind.
Having gun laws that restrict us from carrying guns on our person makes about as much sense as a "bone dry martini." If there is no vermouth in the drink, like it or not, you're no longer drinking a martini. It's now just either gin or vodka. The absent ingredient changes the outcome. What surgeon in his right mind would begin working on a patient in an operating room without instruments within arm's reach, or likewise with a mechanic working on a car in a shop with no tools, even if they were "just next door"?
It is sheer naivete, as well as utter folly, for any thinking, logical adult of average or better intelligence to think a law (or another law) is going to stop a committed shooter. In fact, all most gun control laws do is further trample the rights of law abiding gun owners while the bad guys continue to enjoy carte blanche with their diabolical plans and whims. Pardon the pun, but "the jury is still out" as to whether or not Jared Lee Loughner is first even guilty, and second, if he is guilty, whether he is evil, insane, or both. But if he is guilty, Congressman King's silly gun law, if in place then, would not have stopped Loughner, or any other person driven by evil and/or insanity.
Federal Judge John Roll was also tragically killed in the Arizona rampage. Yet what King's inane law would do is make openly public federal institutions, such as courthouses and Congressional field offices that much more vulnerable, just like today's schools. Predators seek easy prey. It's not rocket science. Many jurisdictions now ban even the otherwise legal carrying of a firearm within a given amount of distance to a school, thus any passing driver who happens to get stopped for a minor and unrelated traffic violation by a police officer in front of a school would now be guilty of a far more serious crime, and ditto with courthouses and other government buildings under "The King's Speech." And the bad guys? They'll just continue to be bad guys. And they will always find, get, and use guns.
This whole debacle further shows what we already know: Congress is still woefully inept, and still, to our peril. We have real problems in this country today that directly endangers many Americans, and the best we get from our pathetic, politically correct, myopic, pie-in-the-sky federal government is more stupidity, more worthless, zany ideas more bureaucracy and red tape, short term band-aids, more restriction of our personal liberties, and meanwhile, the ongoing problems are not only unchecked, but rapidly worsening, and all on our increasing dime.
At this writing, Real Clear Politics (www.realclearpolitics.com) shows that only 24.7% of Americans approve of the newly elected Congress, about double of the stats of the previous Congress. We hear a lot of hot air and loopy ideas coming from the shallow halls of Congress and little in terms of real rubber meeting the road kind of results. Almost no one is talking or doing anything about the many dangerous and all too often ignored loons roaming our communities. Instead, we hear feel-good, knee-jerk hyperbole about restricting where, how, and when we may exercise our God-given right to bear arms, and finger pointing about fiery rhetoric and rude name calling, and yet even those keeping that shallow debate going freely admit that no evidence shows that Loughner had any specific ideology or political viewpoint, or that any of the left and right wing media blather had any influence on him. In fact, it appears he may have been stalking Congresswoman Giffords for longer than anyone knew.
While Rome continues to burn, the government offers tyranny and chatter, and the fourth estate supposedly instituted as a watch dog ignore the inferno and offer entertaining sideshows to its respective right and left ideologue bases as distractions from the smoke and flames.
I absolutely and vigorously agree that more should be done to protect our government officials, particularly those such as judges and members of Congress, whose very position involves direct interaction with the public, but King's nonsensical proposal accomplishes none of that. In fact, if anything, it is a deterrent to their protection, and an impediment to the fruitful dialogue to effectively do something about it. After 9/11, we rightfully allowed pilots to carry sidearms. If I was a member of Congress, make no mistake about it, I'd be packing iron nowadays. But under King's loony proposal, what if King is a friend of mine, and he endorses my reelection and is stumping with me. Do I, as an equally endangered member of Congress, now have to remain unarmed if Peter King is on a stage and within 1,000 feet of me? Where does this lunacy end?
I see a pattern here with firearms that shares common ground with the issues of smoking and child predators. Child predators are for the most part incurable. They cannot and often will not help themselves. For the protection of their victims and many potential victims, they need to be incarcerated for life, period. But the left doesn't want to do that, because as we all know from liberal thought, everyone else in society is guilty except the criminal. So the left continues to make increasingly more restrictive laws as to where registered sex offenders can go in public to a point where it is now getting almost ridiculously unenforceable. Pretty soon they'll all be cordoned to a street corner between a fire hydrant and a storm drain. Cities with aggressive anti-smoking laws (like Nanny Bloomy's Big Apple, now with fewer calories and no trans fats) increasingly restrict where smokers can publicly smoke, and in some cases now, even including some areas out doors. Liberals hate big tobacco, but they don't want to outlaw it, as too much of their cherished tax revenue and stock investments for public employee pension funds would be lost. Exasperated by continually having to fight those of us with some semblance of liberty, logic and patriotism, the left now seeks to gradually but increasingly restrict what it cannot prohibit: bearing arms. Incrementalism is the key to winning any political battle, akin to the riddle, "How do you eat an elephant?", the obvious and only real answer is, "One bite at a time." Only in this debate, it is a Republican "elephant" (albeit with Democrat-donkey blood running through his veins) eating the current bothersome elephant in the middle of the left wing's room.
If King's plan isn't a Trojan Horse, then it seems to be the equivalent to a spontaneous etching on the head of a pin in terms of lack of logic and forethought, and in either case, it should be rejected promptly, passionately, and permanently by his clearer thinking colleagues in the Congress and the ever endangered species known as the free American electorate. And also in either case, the newly elected Republican House majority should give serious contemplation to removing Congressman King from his Chairmanship on the very vital Homeland Security Commission and replace him with a more astute and competent replacement who is more focused on taking the guns away from the bad guys instead of the good guys. These are turbulent times with many lives at stake. We no longer have the luxury of kindly looking the other way and suffering what Lenin aptly called "useful idiots" at the helm of key positions in our government that offer too little margin for error.
We know from Professor John Lott, a Second Amendment convert from his own research and author of many books including his famous, "More Guns, Less Crime," that in fact, as the title correctly states, violent crime decreases in areas of a more armed citizenry and increases when the lemming, law abiding citizenry is left vulnerable by stricter gun control, much like the poor folks in New Orleans, post-Katrina, who lawfully obeyed and handed over their prized pistolas to the local police, many of whom not only never returned in many instances, but also lost the guns afterward with little else to say other than, "Oops." And when the cops left, the watching, prowling, blood thirsty, opportunistic and oh, so patient thugs moved in, and the law biding citizens were now easy prey and subsequently victims, casualties and little more than crime statistics on paper in short order.
History has also taught us repeatedly that once the law abiding citizenry is disarmed, a tyrannical government can and will take over.
Congressman King would be well advised to read Professor Lott's book, and maybe also a history book or two.
And then, last but not least, The United States Constitution.
Right after he stops drinking that Long Island water, the Washington Kool-Aid, and coffee (de-caf, of course) in Gracie Mansion with Hizzonor.