It’s the ultimate goal of most anti-gunners, but rarely do they ever admit to wanting to repeal the Second Amendment. I mean, why say the quite part out loud when there’s virtually no chance of that happening? I guess the frustration over losing ground was simply too much for Indiana forensic and clinical psychologist Paul Shriver, who’s responded to the Hoosier State’s recent adoption of Constitutional Carry with a full-throated call to repeal the right to keep and bear arms.
Shriver’s column is the focus of today’s Bearing Arms’ Cam & Co, partly because what he’s calling for is so insane, and partly because I do believe that his column is natural byproduct of the gun control lobby’s diminishing returns on its decades-long investments in civilian disarmament. I noticed something similar around the time of the Heller decision in 2008, and I suspect that with the Supreme Court poised to deliver an opinion recognizing the right not only to keep, but to bear arms, some gun control activists are feeling particularly desperate about the future of their movement, and for good reason.
Repeal of the Second Amendment might be their “logical” conclusion to a Supreme Court that states the Second Amendment means what it says, but for the rest of us, it’s proof that gun control activists have no idea how the real world works. Congress is so closely divided that gun control bills are going nowhere, and Constitutional Carry is now the law of the land in 25 states. Fully 42 states are “shall issue,” so how does Shriver expect that 3/4 of the House and Senate and 38 states could approve an amendment repealing the right of the people to keep and bear arms? This isn’t aspirational. It’s delusional.
The only real solution must begin with the repeal of the 2nd Amendment in its entirety and without delay. It might then be re-written in clear language as a privilege to be strictly regulated — the details to be worked out later by usual democratic means. This would include specifics as to legal and reasonable legitimacy of uses, manufacture, sales, types, and related products.
In the interim, of course, all guns in current ownership, manufacture, storage, etc., would need to be recalled, and if not “re-legalized,” eliminated. Some current types and uses, would be restored, regulated and licensed as appropriate with little real inconvenience. Thus, this idea is not anti-gun per se, nor in any sense extreme.
Crazy, right? I mean, even if the votes were there to repeal the Second Amendment (and they’re not), amending the Constitution to rid itself of that pesky language about not infringing on the right of the people to keep and bear arms wouldn’t have the effect that Shriver believes it would. It’s not only the U.S. Constitution that protects that right. Most state constitutions do so as well, and repealing the Second Amendment wouldn’t have any immediate impact on those states.
What’s more, Shriver’s harebrained idea to “recall” some 400-million privately owned firearms would also have to be approved by Congress and the Courts, and that would require the repeal and replacement of our Fourth Amendment as well.
Then there’s the little matter of who exactly would be responsible for confiscating all those guns from their formerly legal owners. We’re talking about somewhere between 80-100 million Americans, so even if only half of those decided they weren’t going to comply, that’s still fare more legal gun owners than all active duty military and law enforcement combined.
But hey, at least calls for repealing the Second Amendment, confiscating hundreds of millions of guns, and turning tens of millions of law-abiding Americans isn’t “anti-gun per se” or “extreme,” right?
I honestly thought this piece was a parody of anti-gun talking points when I first read it, but that doesn’t appear to be the case. To the best of my knowledge Shriver believes in everything he said in his column, which means he’s going to be bitterly disappointed with what the future holds. To be sure, 2A activists won’t win every one of our legal and legislative battles, but I’d say that we have a much better chance of seeing national right to carry reciprocity or even 50 Constitutional Carry states than we do the repeal of the Second Amendment going forward. The votes simply aren’t there for repealing our right to keep and bear arms, even if the gun control lobby is too deeply deluded to ever admit it.