Here is a fundamental misunderstanding of the Second Amendment:
“I, like most Americans, believe that the Second Amendment guarantees an individual the right to bear arms. And we recognize the traditions of gun ownership that passed on from generation to generation—that hunting and shooting are part of a cherished national heritage.”
In 2008 our elected official(s) promised to "protect the rights of hunters and other law-abiding Americans to purchase, own, transport, and use guns for the purposes of hunting and target shooting." But as Ice-T could have told him, the main purpose of the constitutional right to keep and bear arms is not to facilitate hunting and target shooting; it is to facilitate self-defense, against both official oppression and private aggression. The rapper turned actor put it this way in a BBC interview:
“The right to bear arms is because that's the last form of defense against tyranny. Not to hunt. It's to protect oneself from the police.”
When a politician suggests the Second Amendment is all about hunting, he trivializes it, just as he would be trivializing the First Amendment by saying it's all about pornography. Here is another clue that voters should not put much faith in elected official(s) commitment to gun rights:
“A lot of gun owners would agree that AK-47s belong in the hands of soldiers, not in the hands of criminals—that they belong on the battlefield of war, not on the streets of our cities.”
An AK-47 is a selective-fire assault rifle, illegal for civilians. Presumably a politician is referring to semiautomatic rifles that resemble the AK-47, many of which were banned under federal law until 2004. Hence he/she is blurring the distinction between machine guns and semiautomatic "assault weapons" while perpetuating the false idea that such guns are uniquely suited for crime and have no legitimate uses.
This blog post was partially edited from the Hit and Run Blog article by: Jacob Sullum Jul. 26, 2012 12:42 pm.
God bless America! May we always appreciate our God given right not to be oppressed by government and to enjoy a life filled with hard takes and tight lines. Come and fly fish Idaho soon.
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