At a club in Orlando Florida, nearly 100 people were killed or injured at a club in shooting involving a terrorist whose name will not be mentioned. In light of this massacre and many before the rights of gun owners have been a topic of discussion and deep contention. The far-left demand a ban on weapons, while the far right scream a breach of their constitutional rights.
As someone who is in support of “liberal” ideas, like a universal healthcare system and free education, it bothers me that I can not support our second amendment without coming off to people as a hypocrite. I do not expect someone who believes in the conservative idea of stricter immigration laws to be homophobic. So why is the same expected of me?
I am certainly someone who leans left, but that does not mean I am not able to have beliefs that differ from the leftist mentality. I have no problem stating that I am for gun rights. This is because it is impossible to find a party that captures all of the ideals I support.
"the United States has been at war for 222 of our 239 years as a nation"
I believe that we as citizens have the right to a well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, and the right of people to keep and bear Arms as stated in under our second amendment rights. This means I am in full support of conceal-and-carry and other handgun, shotgun and rifle rights. However, the shall not be infringed upon is one aspect I am not too sure of.
It is frustrating to me to hear from individuals who believe the simple answer is the barring of weapons. This mentality, to me, is immensely naive. We are a country, whether some like it or not, that gun culture is deeply ingrained into. Since 1776 the United States has been at war for 222 of our 239 years as a nation. We were founded through a revolution that began with local militias, we then overcame a southern revolution through the Civil War, and participated in many more after. To think that it is even possible to ban something that is so deeply ingrained in who we are with ease is ignorant.
However, the most common conversation I have about gun rights is the need for semi or fully automatic rifles. This is one aspect of gun rights that I have always been up in the air for. I do question the need for semi or fully-automatic weapons. I do understand and sympathize for those who are gun enthusiasts or simply want to covet their constitutional rights.
Personally, I do not see the need to have a fully functional semi or fully automatic gun if your intent is just to collect. Since a firearm can only be classified as a weapon by the lower receiver. In layman’s terms, this is the trigger system. I have no issue if a gun enthusiast wants a certain gun for their collection. Until the lower receiver is attached to the upper, it can not be considered a weapon, therefore, does not need to be registered.
"It also barred various weapons that were previously banned in past expired legislation like semi-automatic firearms, modern sporting rifles/assault weapons"
I also want to state that just because I personally don't see the need to own a semi- or fully-automatic weapon does not mean I believe that no one should. This means I am in full support of owning a fully functional semi/automatic rifle so long as there are background checks, regulations, and safety precautions that are followed prior to ownership of the weapon. This is because I support our right to keep a regulated Militia to protect our right as a Free State against any acts of oppression or tyranny. I am aware that this is a slippery slope. So this aspect may change but as for now this is what I believe.
However, I am deeply frustrated at the NRA’s contention against safety procedures for the fear that it is an act of “taking people’s guns”. The NRA showed strong opposition to a proposed federal legislation piece titled Assault Weapons Ban of 2015. This legislation stated the use of background checks and the barring of pistol grips, certain types of firearm stocks, such as collapsing and telescoping stocks. It also barred various weapons that were previously banned in past expired legislation like semi-automatic firearms, modern sporting rifles/assault weapons, semi-automatic pistols, semi-automatic shotguns, and high-capacity magazines. There is no need for an untrained civilian to own any of these items. If these are to be sought there must be strict requirements for ownership that include training, safety courses, background checks and potentially psychological exams.
"Clearly there is a larger problem than one particular religion"
I do not believe that I am morally superior to anyone in the far-left or far-right. I really do not know what the solution to gun violence is, but what I do know is that simply stronger gun control is not the answer. Considering some states do have strict regulations on “assault rifles” many of which include fixed smaller magazines that can not be removed, the barring of features (pistol grip, certain stocks, etc..) which greatly reduce the abilities of even owning an “assault rifle” yet crimes of this nature do occur.
I am a firm believer that is the person that is the root of the problem, not the gun itself.
When we consider the high rate of deinstitutionalization that has occurred in this country it is hard for me to support the robbery of our constitutional rights. By closing down mental institutions and reducing funding we caused a lack of care and strengthened the stigma towards those with mental illness.
It is also important to keep in mind that radical Islamists, radical white supremacists, mentally ill people, plain psychopaths, anti-government fanatics, ex-military lunatics have committed massacres across the US. Clearly there is a larger problem than one particular religion.
We must not paint a group of people, whether it be by a political party or a religion, with the same brush. Life is much more complex than a checked box on a survey sheet. I, as a person who supports liberal ideas, can also support ideas claimed by another party. This is one of the most important points I wish to get across because that is how we will progress as a nation.