Over the weekend, the Second Amendment community found itself in the midst of a crisis. One of our own, apparently, was holed up in his home as the forces of evil–in this case, police allegedly looking to confiscate a 30-round magazine from him–surrounded his humble abode. The man in question claimed it was a red flag effort by police.
By the light of dawn, things looked different. In particular, they looked far more muddled than they had been.
Law enforcement gave a very different story from what the man in question presented, and now people are scratching their heads and wondering just quite what the hell was going on.
Yet what’s not debatable is that everyone in the Second Amendment community was willing to take it at face value. We were ready to take Alexander Booth’s claims as Gospel right from the get-go.
There’s a reason for that.
You see, what Booth was claiming was taking place is nothing less than the concerns of many in the Second Amendment community. Many of us have, on some level, a fear that someone will make a claim to the police that we’re a danger. That report, regardless of how off-base it may be, could well find our home surrounded by police looking to disarm us.
Whether or not things happened as Booth claims is irrelevant, really. Not when it comes to understanding the very real concerns of the gun community.
Red flag laws can be issued over nothing. Even versions that have some penalties for false reporting still have remarkably little to prevent someone from claiming such an order is needed. They can make up anything and deprive someone of their constitutionally-protected right to keep and bear arms. After the fact, if you can prove they did it maliciously, you might see some action. More likely than not, though, you won’t be able to.
They can get away with it.
We all fear that. That’s especially true of anyone who has been in my position where my interest in firearms was taken as prima facia evidence that they’re dangerous. No threats are required. Not a single utterance of anything that could be remotely taken as a threat is needed, only an interest in guns. Yet in some states, that can be spun into a threat that requires the government to roll up to your house and try to take what you have.
We accepted Booth’s claim because it was what we feared was only days away already.
There’s still a lot we don’t definitively know about what happened in New York. I am waiting on some unbiased facts to surface prior to getting too worked up either way.
In the meantime, though, I can certainly understand the outcry as things were transpiring Saturday night.
That’s not to excuse the immediate response. We should look for facts before jumping to conclusions, though I’m as guilty of it as anyone. I was away from social media Saturday night; otherwise, I’d have probably been right there with everyone who was so outraged at what was taking place.
This should also remind anti-gunners that we’re not a passive bunch. We take infringements on our rights quite seriously, but also take infringements on the rights of others seriously as well.
We’re not going to shrug and let it go.
More importantly, we are watching and will continue to watch. The government can’t hope we won’t be paying attention to what they’re doing. Saturday night should have proven that, at least. Even if it turns out to be as the police said it was.