If looking for common ground on guns, this ain't it

If looking for common ground on guns, this ain't it
AP Photo/Jae C. Hong

Anti-gunners love to talk about trying to find “common ground” on gun control. They don’t want to just do what we can agree with, they just see that as a starting point. In time, they want to push what’s acceptable to a point that they could never get away with unless they start with something much easier to sell.

So, they start with something they can get passed.

A recent op-ed attempts to discuss that common ground, but folks, this ain’t it.

There can be no debate that what we are doing for gun safety in this country isn’t working. While there is debate over what we can do about it, now is a fresh time to open rational discussions on guns. The clear purpose must be bringing about greater gun safety.

To begin with, only about 30% of gun owners own or have owned an AR-15 or similar assault rifle. These types of weapons don’t represent the typical American gun owner. Their primary purpose is to kill and maim people. Should they be allowed to be carried in public places?

First, 30 percent is roughly a third of all gun owners. When you think of the sheer number of firearms owners in this country, you quickly recognize that this represents millions upon millions of law-abiding citizens. That’s not exactly atypical.

Further, a number of others don’t own such weapons as a matter of choice, but will not support a ban on such a firearm, so even if only a third own such weapons, another large portion aren’t going to roll over and let gun control fans pull this kind of stuff.

That isn’t exactly common ground.

Opinion polls show that gun owners themselves overwhelmingly favor universal background checks. Should a review of those purchasing an assault rifle be as stringent as those required for adopting a rescue puppy?

First, the requirements for adopting a rescue puppy vary from place to place, but almost none require a criminal background check, which most gun buyers actually do undergo.

Further, if someone wants to rehome a puppy, they may or may not make the new owner jump through whatever hoops.

This comparison is beyond stupid and the author should be ashamed for trying to make it.

As for polls showing support for universal background checks, take a deeper look. Most of those polls only ask people if they support background checks on gun sales. There’s no mention of universal background checks at all, and that’s important.

You see, as it stands, the questions may lead many to assume they’re stating their support for the status quo, not a new order of things.

When universal background checks have come up for a vote by the people of a given state, they tend to lose. That’s because the idea of such background checks tends to sound good…for other people. Folks don’t like the idea that they can’t sell a gun to their brother or cousin without getting government permission.

If this were really “common ground,” it wouldn’t be so hard to get voters to pass these measures. That tells us just how useless the polling actually is on this topic.

What law-abiding purpose is served by a 30 shot capacity clip? Should there be any limit? Where should we draw the line? Courts have found that the Second Amendment is not without limits in its application.

Yes, the courts have said the Second Amendment has limits, but this isn’t about the courts, now is it? This is about the author’s supposed search for “common ground.”

Yet he asks what law-abiding purpose is served by a 30-round capacity. Well, the answers are numerous. You see, self-defense may require just that many rounds, if not more. Law-abiding citizens don’t get to pick the nature of their violent encounters, so more ammo is always welcome. No one has ever complained about excess ammunition after a gunfight, after all.

See, all of this is supposed to be about finding common ground, but after a bit, it just becomes the author demanding justification for us maintaining our gun rights. This isn’t finding common ground.

Which is fine, because no such thing exists. The discussion is binary. You either support the Second Amendment or you don’t. It’s just that simple.

Clearly, this author doesn’t.