The Argument for Guns: Facts, Logic, and the Founding Fathers

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“A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.” The Second Amendment to the United States Constitution

The war against guns has been reignited. Predictably, gun control advocates are mobilizing the anger and frustration of Americans into an opportunity to promote their real agenda—get rid of all guns.  Rather than focusing on the lack of mental health laws that allow psychopaths like the perpetrator of the Newtown massacre to harm themselves and others, they strive to gut our Second Amendment.  Washington officials such as Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), who recently proposed a ban on all assault weapons, are trying to enact legislation that would effectively inhibit the right of Americans to defend themselves.

The war over guns is a war of feelings versus the facts.  And the gun control activists have made their “feelings” case. Let’s take a look at some facts for once.

According to crime statistics released by the FBI, 496 people were murdered with hammers or other blunt object in 2011, while just 323 murders carried out that year were via rifle. Knives and other cutting instruments contributed to 1,694 murders, and personal weapons (hands, feet, etc.) caused 726 deaths. From 2005-2009, blunt objects were used in more murders than shotguns. These are the facts and they highlight a single predominant theme: guns don’t kill people, people kill people.

So, if stricter gun laws are going to be put in place to prevent homicides, then logic dictates that there should be stricter legislation on knives, hammers, and even the use of one’s own hands and feet.  Just imagine the lobbying campaigns that would arise.

Apply the leftist logic and we would need to see hammer control legislation put in place in order to limit the amount of deaths caused by hammers. Those who wish to own knives would have to go through an extensive licensing process in order to limit the amount of knives we have on our streets. Movies and video games showing gratuitous usage of hands and feet would come under serious scrutiny for causing others to commit crimes with their appendages. The idea is completely absurd.

But the gun control crazies are more than simply logic twisters; they consider themselves experts on the U. S.  Constitution. Many of them are up in arms about the supposed Republican “re-interpretation” of the Second Amendment. New Yorker writer Jeffrey Toobin in a recent article attacked the “conservative re-casting of the Second Amendment.”  Toobin should read recent Supreme Court decisions upholding the right to bear arms.

Liberals and conservatives can play the “I know my Constitution better than you game” all they want, but why not look at what the Founding Fathers had to say about guns? After all, they would know the true intent of the Second Amendment better than anyone.

James Madison, who was responsible for the wording of the Second Amendment, said that “Americans have the right and advantage of being armed, unlike the people of other countries, whose leaders are afraid to trust them.”

Think that getting guns off the street will deter violent criminals? Well, Thomas Jefferson would disagree with you. He said that “the laws that forbid the carrying of arms are laws of such a nature. They disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes…”

According to Samuel Adams, “the Constitution shall never be construed to prevent the people of the United States who are peaceable citizens from keeping their own arms.” Little did he know that this is exactly what would be happening more than 200 years later.

So while gun control activists rely on emotion to make their claims, those who defend the Second Amendment right to bear arms have facts, logic, and the Founding Fathers on their side.

Talk about bringing out the big guns.

by Richard Thompson, Hillsdale College

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