With testimony taking place before Congress, there’s a lot of stuff that’s going to be said. I’d be very surprised if half of the lawmakers on the committee even hear half of what’s being said. A lot clearly aren’t paying attention (as you’ll see in a moment). However, as noted earlier today, many witnesses are there to try and elicit emotions, not to talk facts.
That’s because they want people to throw off rationality. It works, unfortunately. It works because people are emotional creatures. That’s why anti-gunners like to bring speakers who can talk from emotion; because it does sometimes sway people.
However, Amy Swearer of the Heritage Foundation was one who came in armed with facts. However, that wasn’t all she brought to the table during her prepared remarks. No, not at all.
No, she was able to bring a bit of emotion herself.
.@AmySwearer delivering basic facts about how Americans use firearms to @HouseJudiciary in their hearing on “assault weapons” is the dopamine hit I didn’t know I needed—but I wasn’t expecting the story about her mom.
If #2A twitter doesn’t know who Amy is yet they should today. pic.twitter.com/Aw3Fl1mFOa
— Lyndsey Fifield (@lyndseyfifield) September 25, 2019
I wasn’t familiar with Swearer’s work before now, but I’m definitely going to be following her going forward. She just laid down a powerful defense of the Second Amendment and assault weapons with both fact and emotion.
The anecdote about her mother not being very good with a handgun but being able to use an AR-15 accurately shouldn’t really surprise us. There are a lot of reasons why that would be the case. The longer distance between the front and back sights, for example, helps with accuracy. The stance one takes with a rifle is a bit more stable as well. Plus, there’s less chance of flinching with a rifle than a handgun.
And there’s tons of stuff I’m probably not even thinking about.
Regardless, that right there is the argument. That is why people have AR-15s.
Right now, a lot of lawmakers like Rep. Lucy McBath–who, we will note, seemed to not be paying particular attention to Swearer’s remarks–don’t think you or I should have AR-15s. They think they should be reserved for military and law enforcement use, even though the military doesn’t actually use AR-15s.
Yet Swearer illustrates why they’re needed. She gives them the answer to the question, “Why does anyone need an AR-15?” They need them because for some, it’s the best way for them to be able to defend their life. It’s just that simple, and that part of Swearer’s testimony is what folks like us need to counter with when someone asks that question.
It’s all fine and good to argue that an assault weapon ban is unconstitutional. I agree it is. However, that argument isn’t going to change the minds of the very people who are pushing to infringe on those constitutionally protected rights. They aren’t going to be swayed by that in the least. “Oh, it’s unconstitutional? Well, I guess I’m opposed to gun control now,” said no one ever.
You need a better argument, and I think Swearer has presented a solid one. It won’t sway the die-hard partisans one way or another, obviously, but you’re not arguing to change their minds. You’re arguing to change the minds of those who may be observing, those who may have moms who they worry about and want to keep a bit safer yet who can’t hit the broadside of a barn with their handguns.
Amy Swearer is a name you all need to learn and follow. That much is clear.