Government & Politics

Democrats Reload on Gun Control

Meanwhile, gun rights enjoy increasingly wide public support.

Dec. 12, 2014

Democrats are nothing if not persistent. In the wake of their second straight midterm election shellacking, they have decided to double down on one of their pet issues: gun control. Republicans will soon have more members in Congress than they’ve had in more than 70 years, while Democrats have completely lost the South and have been routed at the state level. Yet they believe gun control is their silver bullet.

The Progressive Change Campaign Committee launched the “Big Ideas Project” this week to gather ideas from the public in order to reenergize Democrats. If gun control is the big idea they came up with, they should keep asking questions.

Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT) trumpeted this new initiative. “When you don’t pass background checks,” he warned, “it’s much more likely that someone will get their hands on an illegal gun and use it to kill their neighbors and classmates.”

His fellow Connecticut Democrat, Richard Blumenthal, made an even more outrageous claim: “Congress’s failure to act makes it, in fact, an aider and abettor to those deaths that could be prevented.”

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) said that a universal background check bill is “inevitable.” She claims the bill has 180 cosponsors. Of course, it would need 218 votes to pass, though Democrats promise they’ll try.

Democrats have relied on these tired, old arguments and shame tactics for years to make their case for infringing Second Amendment rights. Facts go by the wayside, actual public sentiment is ignored and logic gives way to emotions.

Of course, we all want to prevent mass shootings, but the universal background check bill Democrats roll out after every horrific killing spree is not the answer. A review of mass shootings going back two decades shows that killers either obtain guns legally after passing a background check, or they steal them from their legal owners. Mass murderers almost never procure a gun on the black market. And any background check law that Congress could pass would not affect murderous psychopaths too young to purchase a gun legally.

Meanwhile, public opinion is against Democrats. Legal gun sales have risen dramatically since 2009, thanks to the gun salesman of the decade – Barack Obama. And a report issued earlier this week by the Pew Research Center indicates support for gun rights is now at its highest in two decades. According to the report, 52% believe it is more important to protect the rights of Americans to own guns. This level of support has risen seven points since January 2013, just after the Newtown murders provided the crisis Democrats needed for their ensuing exploitative push for tighter gun control. Some 57% of Americans say gun ownership does more to deter crime than create it, while only 38% believe it endangers public safety. Support among blacks for gun rights has also risen, with 54% saying gun ownership deters crime – nearly double the percentage of supporters in December 2012.

Looking at partisan views on the issue, it’s easy to see where it all breaks down. Six in 10 Democrats say guns do more to put safety at risk, while eight in 10 Republicans believe guns deter crime. According to Pew, Republican support has gone up 17 points since 2012.

Democrats look at these statistics and say the study is flawed, claiming that the questions are misleading and not framed correctly. They also resort to insulting people who support gun rights. Gene Weingarten of The Washington Post called the Second Amendment the “refuge of bumpkins and yeehaws who like to think they are protecting their homes against imagined swarthy marauders desperate to steal their flea-bitten sofas from their rotting front porches.” Not exactly a statement designed to win hearts and minds to a cause.

With this attitude being so prevalent among Democrats, is it really any wonder why they are losing elections so badly?

A growing majority of the public believes legal gun ownership is a solid deterrent to crime, and facts support this view. If Democrats couldn’t pass gun control after the highly politicized Newtown shooting in 2012, in what environment do they think they could attain their goal?

As important as this public opinion is for preserving our rights, however, the most critical fact comes straight from our Declaration of Independence: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights,” and among them is self-defense. That won’t be made untrue by any law or public opinion poll.

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