When the McCloskeys brought out their guns to face a mob that they claim threatened their lives and their homes, they catapulted into a national talking point. Everyone had an opinion, and many were critical of how the McCloskeys handled themselves. It was clear to many of us that they didn’t have a lot of training time with their weapons and that was noted by a great many people in the gun community.
Few on this side of the divide felt they acted wrongly by presenting their guns before an angry mob. I mean, we’d seen too many instances of stuff being wrecked not to take it seriously.
However, it seems the anti-gunners are going to try and use this to attack gun rights.
It’s inconceivable and abhorrent to me that gun owners could be so careless, and that as a society we haven’t taken the steps to require proper training, safety and accountability measures for civilian gun ownership.
Our legislators need to reexamine the gun laws in this country — especially in Missouri. Responsible gun owners need to be vocal about safety and decry those who don’t practice it.
When the McCloskeys pointed their weapons at a crowd, demonstrating lethal intent when none was warranted, I wasn’t there to relay the kind of message any instructor would have done in basic training. As a civilian, I can’t make them do push-ups until lactic acid pumps through their arms and they can’t hold a rifle upright. But we can and we should and we must do more to ensure that those who possess firearms learn and practice basic safety principles.
The author of this piece, Peter Lucier, is a member of the Everytown Veterans Advisory Council. In other words, he’s a vehement anti-gunner who doesn’t think you or I should have access to certain weapons; or any weapons, ultimately.
However, what Lucier is missing here is that much of the criticism of the McCloskeys’ weapons handling skills didn’t come from anti-gunners. It came from people in the gun rights community. We criticized and pointed out what they were doing wrong because we almost all ultimately believe that training is essential. He says we need to decry it, but he’s so stuck in the anti-gun bubble that he failed to note that we’d done just that.
We just oppose mandating it, unlike Lucier.
Gun rights are fundamental human rights, a right protected in the Constitution. Rights need to be used responsibly, but we don’t require training prior to exercising any other fundamental right. While I’m sure Lucier would argue that none of those have the ramifications on human life that guns do, he’d be wrong.
Misusing free speech can incite a mob that results in the loss of human life. I mean, we’ve seen angry mobs kill innocent people recently, as a matter of fact, so let’s not pretend it can’t happen.
Further, governments are responsible for more loss of life over the last century than private citizens ever could. Yet we don’t require special training in order to vote. Remember, Hitler came to power in what was ostensibly a democratic republic.
For Lucier to pretend that gun rights are somehow different just proves that he, just as so many of his Everytown cohorts, believes that the Second Amendment is a second-class right. He wants to deny people their basic civil liberties until they meet the criteria he deems appropriate, and he’s using the McCloskeys to do it. That’s funny, especially since the McCloskeysaren’tt exactly part of the gun rights crowd.
Well, they weren’t, anyway. Now that the anti-gun media and their buddies have attacked them, they might just rethink that.