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(108,903 posts)
Mon Jun 30, 2014, 07:02 AM Jun 2014

Why We Can't Talk About Gun Control


Dick Metcalf (Aspen Institute


The column appeared in the December 2013 issue of Guns & Ammo, but subscribers started getting it in late October. Within three days, Metcalf said, as responses poured in—by mail, in forums, and on social media—from what he called the pointed end of the bell curve, people who "think the constitution is the only law we need," Metcalf was labeled a “gun control collaborator” and “modern-day Benedict Arnold.”

"What struck me most about what happened to me was that this huge media corporation [Intermedia, the owner of Guns & Ammo] was absolutely unprepared for the onslaught of social-media negativity," Metcalf said, "when we went over that line and dared ask the question, whether people might think about whether or not regulation is by definition infringement."

The Second Amendment says the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed, Metcalf noted, "not that it shall not be regulated." Rather the first four words of the amendment, "a well regulated militia," not only allow but mandate regulation.

"Everything is regulated, but everything is not infringed. Not all regulation is infringement. Is your right to drive a car being infringed by a speed limit?"
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Half-Century Man

(5,279 posts)
3. Because the income equality and progressive cultural damage caused by Reagan
Mon Jun 30, 2014, 07:33 AM
Jun 2014

and his corporate handlers have done so much horrific damage to us, that many of us are fighting desperately for any little facade of control in our own lives. The intuition that something is wrong without a clear target is transforming into a reality where killing random humans is becoming a viable option.


(34,073 posts)
4. Metcalf talked his heart's content. I'm sure Bloomberg can hire him if he wants to be paid for it.
Mon Jun 30, 2014, 07:51 AM
Jun 2014

But certainly Guns and Ammo has no obligation beyond his contract to assist him.

Gun control is always being talked about.

Gun restrictionists equate not getting their way with new gun restrictions as "we cant talk about gun control."


(7,395 posts)
5. Anything currently proposed would be ineffective
Mon Jun 30, 2014, 08:12 AM
Jun 2014

If the party has to take the PR hit and rile up the right-wingers anyway shouldn't it be something that could actually make a difference?

Handguns account for something like 85% of gun violence yet no proposed law addresses restricting them.

It's a waste of time in the current environment because they can't even pass toothless laws that wouldn't have an impact.



(16,038 posts)
6. There are literally thousands of regulations on guns and the 2nd amendment
Mon Jun 30, 2014, 08:24 AM
Jun 2014

Some have been challenged and the decisions of the challenges have given us "case law". "Case law" defines boundaries of constitutionality of laws (among other things). Case law is occasionally reversed or adjusted by more case law. Roe v. Wade is an example of case law, as is every case citing used in any justification of action before a court.

There is case law defining the limits of regulation of the 2nd amendment and every other amendment. One of the examples of case law applying to the 2nd found in USA v. Miller in 1939 was a limit/distinction used to determine if a specific firearm can be under more regulation than others firearms. In this case the firearm in question was a sawn off shotgun. The court decided a sawn off shotgun could have more regulation than a regular shotgun because sawn off shotguns were not "in common use for lawful purposes". This case law has been referenced in many cases since 1939 establishing even more case law. Without SCOTUS redefining the limitations in some other case, effectively overturning Miller, this will be the standard for additional regulation on specific firearms.

Now ask yourself why Bush said he would reauthorize the 1994 assault weapons ban seemingly against the interests of his of his obligations? Why would a Democratically controlled congress fail to reauthorize the assault weapons ban? There were challenges coming down the pike to the assault weapons ban. The challenges mostly based on their statistical evidence that the weapons affected by the ban were "in common use for lawful purposes". Bush allies believed that most weapons affected by the assault weapons ban could be shown to be "in common use for lawful purposes", so did democrats in Congress and the prospect of the ban being overturned could make future legislation more difficult so they chose not to reauthorize.

The point is that there are damned few new gun control ideas that wouldn't require a very rare SCOTUS case law reversal to save. States otoh have more latitude for regulation. Big gun control wastes money lobbying for constitutionally impossible federal legislation. There is a reason the NRA spends so much time and money in the states...

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