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Are We Fighting Gun Control Wrong?

Discussion in 'Activism Discussion and Planning' started by giggitygiggity, Oct 1, 2017.

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  1. grampajack

    grampajack AR Junkie

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    I agree that people have mixed interests, but what I'm saying is that you can't empower the government to impose collectivism on one issue, then expect them to respect your individual rights on another issue. For another thing, if you empower the government to impose collectivism on any issue, the good of the people will be replaced with the good of the state, namely the good of the people at the very top.

    The only way to live with a government is to put the rights of the individual above all else, and extend that philosophy upwards, with the rights of the state coming last. So, for example, gun control and free speech, despite being a threat to the state, are preserved as individual rights.

    But then we empower the government to impose collectivism on an issue like gay rights, where they can force an individual to do something that goes against their personal morals on their own property. We've just said that the rights of a certain individual are more important than the rights of another individual, and the government is of course the one who gets to decide whose rights are more important.

    Free speech is the same way. If they can decide whose rights are more important, then they can curtail the free speech of one person because it's hurts someone else's feelings. Or take away your guns because someone finds them scary.

    The end result is that no one has any rights if the definition of a right includes forcing someone to do or not do something.
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2017
  2. MachIVshooter

    MachIVshooter Member

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    This.

    There are great many left-leaning people who are somewhere between neutral and pro-2A, but other issues that they deem more important cause them to vote for the party that is anathema to gun rights.

    It would be nice if RKBA was not a partisan issue, but the democrats have made it one, and unless something within their party changes, it will always be that way.

    What can we do? Well, if you want your more liberal friends to support politicians who are pro-RKBA, we have to work within the party most of us belong to and change some of the other tenets. We're starting to make inroads there, but we have a long way to go, especially when a minority but still very significant percentage of the GOP doesn't want to let go of that stuff. And definitely don't expect anyone on the left to start moving this way during the current administration. They hate Trump so blindly and passionately that if he literally walked on water, they'd accuse him of either not being able to swim or altering physics.
     
  3. larryh1108

    larryh1108 Member

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    I am curious as to how the newer gun buyers will lean. We now have soccer moms and millennials who grew up playing CoD and other games now buying guns. The traditionally left leaning voters have come to know and love their ability to protect themselves and their families and I don't see them chucking away their guns because Hillary and Nancy and Diane say they are evil. I believe we have more closet pro-gun voters than we think and I wonder if they will cross over to the dark side if the Dems push for gun control and confiscation.
     
  4. Wisco

    Wisco member

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    Firstly, we need to really acknowledge what the Second Amendment is - a people's check on the power of the federal government. With that, and in promoting gun rights we should also be promoting the rest of the Bill of Rights and subsequent amendments as well as coming down on the side of personal freedom in every way possible. That means all freedom, not just the freedom christianity allows, or someone's culture permits.

    Secondly, for the last 50 years the NRA should've been seeking out pro-gun liberals to back, but to its detriment it's become solidly far right in its agenda. Would they back Elizabeth Warren if she was pro-gun, but otherwise the same? No, they wouldn't because those who fund the NRA won't tolerate non-conservative views even among fellow pro-gunners. Seriously, I can't imagine it, but what if Bernie Sanders ran on his platform, but the only difference was he said he wanted the Second Amendment to truly be uninfringed - no rules on arms whatsoever? What if socialist Bernie wanted the 1% to be taxed to provide an M4A1 and suppressor to every adult in America to really make the 2A what it says? Would conservative gun owners set aside their religious, social and fiscal beliefs and support him? I doubt it. Guns are now linked to the rest of the ideals of the right in American politics.

    Thirdly, despite the very simple wording of the Second Amendment, the reality is there will be infringements in the name of public safety, just as there are limits on the First Amendment. Don't ever embrace unfair, nonsense, unworkable limits on your rights, but think of something that CAN be done that keep your rights as intact as possible while still serving the public interest. Something can be done and if pro-gunners don't think of something, the anti-gunners have all the proposals and we are just always saying no.

    Lastly, America has an epidemic of violence. Solve the underlying problems (social, fiscal) afflicting society and you'll solve the big problem. If everyone feels like they have a real fair shot at life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, you won't see the carnage we currently see. Pair prosperity with a good mental health system and you'll likely see a decrease in both the constant big city violence and mass shootings.
     
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  5. Sam1911

    Sam1911 Moderator Emeritus

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    Certainly true, and this is a very complicated, very uncertain road we're traveling. Nobody is saying go out and vote for the Democrats to show solidarity or make liberals who own guns feel better. Nor saying that the R party isn't still better on guns (though they're not often outstanding).

    It seems to me important that we DO work to change the more left party from within -- over time. That we do help our more liberal leaning friends stop seeing gun rights as a right-wing issue that they should oppose as a knee-jerk reaction. That we help build up a push for those on that side to strip out grass-roots support for gun control and pry loose that plank from their party's platform.

    Meanwhile, as MachIV said, make "our side's" presentation and options for representatives less appalling to those in the middle and middle-left. Find ways to be less divisive and insulting and more welcoming. Clean out the real unnecessary bile from our own tent so stepping inside doesn't require moderate folks to hold their noses quite so firmly.

    Neither of these things will reap many rewards immediately. But maybe by the time our kids are our age they might.
     
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  6. everydefense

    everydefense Member

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    No, we'll have a new version of "Fudds"... Fudds will stereotypically sacrifice any gun right as long as it doesn't infringe on their preferred method of hunting. Similarly, these new groups will surprisingly throw any gun rights under the gun control bus as long as they get to keep their low capacity carry weapons. ("Nobody NEEDS ___ rounds in a magazine.") :thumbdown:

    Imagine how strong the RKBA community could be if all three groups (Fudds, single CCW-only owners, and traditional firearms enthusiasts) stood together in a unified front? Unfortunately, our biggest national organization (the NRA) stoops to partisan, emotionally charged attacks, driving away many potential allies... hence this thread :oops:
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2017
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  7. Michael Tinker Pearce

    Michael Tinker Pearce Member

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    I'm from Seattle, so I am literally surrounded by liberal gun owners. Their take is they'd rather fight their elected representatives on this one issue than fight with Republicans on a dozen issues- and they do fight them. Despite having long since transitioned to a 'Blue' city Seattle has more carry permits per capita than almost any other major city in the US- at last it did a few years ago- and numbers of permits issued has skyrocketed since the election.

    If we want to bring these people on-board we need to work on the parties. Get the Republicans to back off on social and religious issues and focus on conservative politics, convince the Dems that they don't have to only field anti-gun candidates- in a lot of areas they lose votes because of their anti-gun stance. If what I am seeing has any relevance to the larger body of voters these people they lose do not go to the Republicans; they either go independent or don't vote at all. Stop demonizing liberals- they are a spectrum, not a monolith and they are not 'all the same' which I am constantly reminding them about conservatives.

    The biggest thing we can do to bring these folks on-board would be to change the NRAs leadership, and lose the social and partisan stuff that is unrelated to guns. Sure, report- without comment- on which candidates are pro- or anti- gun. Report on upcoming legislation- but without resorting to partisan rhetoric. Round-file the social and partisan commentary, get rid of the scare-tactics. More focus on educating people instead of just frightening them into donating.
     
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  8. Wisco

    Wisco member

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    Yes. They won't get a cent from me. Perhaps like other libertarian-minded people, I've drawn a line recently and will only contribute dollars or votes to people or groups who uphold what I believe - Foremost I believe we are free to do whatever we want as long as it doesn't directly, knowingly hurt others.
     
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  9. AlexanderA
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    AlexanderA Member

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    If more pro-gun people would get involved in the inner workings of the Democratic Party (such as by voting in primaries), then the anti-gun stance of the party could change. I can remember a time when gun rights were not a partisan issue. The Democratic Party was hijacked by the Bloombergs of the world -- which is ironic, since Bloomberg was not even a Democrat.
     
  10. coloradokevin

    coloradokevin Member

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    I agree with what the original poster said in this thread, but I do wonder if this has become something of a "which came first, the chicken or the egg?" kind of question.

    You see, I'm very Libertarian in my beliefs. I generally believe that people should be able to do as they please if they're committing no crime against others in the process. Own a gun, marry gay, marry straight, be religious, be atheist, make a choice, choose a life, whatever. But, the two political parties have pigeon-holed in on beliefs that seem to be dogmatically linked to any candidate who now runs for office under this banner. As the OP said, it often comes out like this:

    Republican:

    -pro life
    -pro gun
    -anti-gay
    -Christian
    -small government
    -strong military

    Democrats:

    -pro choice
    -anti-gun
    -pro-gay
    -atheist
    -large government
    -no need for military

    Now, when I break down my personal beliefs I find myself just about split down the middle. But, because the issues don't carry equal weight for me (ex: gun rights are VERY important to me), I tend to grudgingly vote for Republican candidates that don't agree with me on a number of issues.

    My voting choices aside, I think this effect plays out in opposite directions as well. I know three pro-gun people at my office who are gay. They tend to vote Democrat, because the importance of their private lives and marriages is of the utmost importance to them... even though they're pro gun, they're more pro-themselves, if you will.

    The only solution to the problem that I can see is to actively involve a lot of people in the gun culture who don't historically fit our norm. Find a gay friend and take them to a range. Find a person who hasn't been exposed to our pastime, and bring them into the culture. They'll still probably vote for a Democrat if that is how they have always voted, but they might start to sway their party away from a focus on gun legislation. Ultimately that's what really matters... getting both sides of the aisle to support this right. Honestly, you can be a gay, pro-choice, agnostic gun owner. I know a few of them, and we need to stop alienating them from our culture. We're all Americans, and this is a right for all of us to enjoy.
     
  11. Blackstone

    Blackstone Member

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    From my understanding, the NRA of the UK did little to prevent the handgun ban of 1997. They were content because it wouldn't affect their rifle shooting. And perhaps were a little sore that they couldn't prevent the semi-auto centerfire ban of 1988. In the UK, it certainly feels like there is no united front for gun owners. Each organisation is content to just protect its own corner.
     
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  12. hq

    hq Member

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    UK NRA has been toothless for several decades. Fat cats who are mainly just politicians' lapdogs, thinking that more they please the powers that be, the less their rights will be infringed.

    Wrong.

    There are a few European organizations that haven't given up, mainly Waffenrecht (Germany), NRA (Finland) and Pro Tell (Switzerland), but the more institutionalized and connected with authorities an organization becomes, the less they're willing to question even the most absurd changes to legislation. Incidentally Germany, Finland and Switzerland are still among the best countries for gun owners in Europe. Estonia and Czech Republic too, but their history of socialist regimes has been an effective reminder of what government authorities should never be allowed to do (again).

    The pattern emerges: FIGHT FOR YOUR RIGHTS, NEVER GIVE UP ANYTHING BECAUSE YOU WON'T GET IT BACK.
     
  13. RoscoeBryant

    RoscoeBryant Member

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    I'm sorry but I have to correct you on that one: Germany is one of the worst countries for gun owners you can find in Europe. The others however are fine when talking in "European standards". The problem with pro gun organisations in Europe in my opinion mainly has two factors:

    - The split competencies in the lawmaking process between the EU and the Countries. There are many different national organisations, however a lot of the laws are made on the EU-level, where until two years ago there was basically nothing going on in terms of pro gun lobbying
    - The topic of gunrights/gunlaws being a little issue in politics and public opinion. Unless something like Paris happens, usually no one really talks about the laws and just keeps them as they are on a national level

    The second point has led to the interesting situation, that being a gun owner in Europe usually is not connected to the sterotypical views on abortion, gay marriage etc., because it is not that big of a topic in general. On the lawmaking front however, it is mainly the political right (although not in all countries) that does something for gunrights.
    While this view on gun laws as not that much of an issue is to some extent positive, it has led to gun owners being passive and reactive instead of proactive. After the EU introduced their plans for new legislation regarding "assault weapons", there was a massive outcry amongst the community and pro gun organisations saw a big rise in membership - afterwards is too late.

    I myself have tried on lots of occasions to "spread the word" and convinced many of my friends that owning a gun is nothing right-wing, bad, conservative - whatever. Some of them own guns themselves now, and no one regretted trying it out.
     
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  14. hq

    hq Member

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    I wouldn't call German "rote karte" principle that bad compared to most other European countries. Not quite as good as the Finnish collector permit that allows you to buy any weapon listed in your approved collection plan, including modern machine guns and in some cases even artillery pieces. For example, mine's six pages long.
    Oh yes there was, I've personally been in a number of delegations since mid-00's when I was still actively involved in lobbying. The media coverage used to be amazingly limited, as if someone had come up with an idea to systematically shut gun issues out of newsfeed. Even WFSA rarely got any, even though the participant list in Nürnberg conferences has always been who's who in gun rights lobby, worldwide.
    There may not be much mainstream publicity, but a lot has been happening in the background for a long time. The usual rate is a couple of statement requests per month to gun-related organizations about a proposed legislative change, many of them being EU-wide and originating from Brussels.
    That's the right thing to do to influence people. Grassroots level activity has a far greater impact than many people think and it's nothing short of amazing when you see the perception change. So many people have no first-hand experience with firearms (cue in my wife some 24 years ago) that it'll take some effort but I have yet to have someone smile after their first day at the range.
     
  15. RoscoeBryant

    RoscoeBryant Member

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    The collectors permit has the extreme disadvantage of being a collectors permit and therefore not as accessible and not as interesting for first time gun owners (and as far as I know you are not automatically allowed to obtain ammunition for guns with Rote Waffenbesitzkarte?). So yeah, for collectors of certain firearms the laws in Germany may not be the worst in Europe, but for "Average Hans" who casually wants to shoot from time to time they are definetly on the low end of the scale.

    I am sorry I did not phrase that right - I meant nothing going on concerning the general publics involvment. I know there are and were organisations lobbying, but most of the average shooter has never heard of them and sadly also did not concern himself with them. Not having a lot of media coverage is a given in Europe when it comes to positive or just fact-based stories.
     
  16. hq

    hq Member

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    The elimination of gun owner base is definitely taking place from a casual shooter on up. The amount of red tape piled on anyone wanting to become a first-time gun owner is mindboggling. On the other hand, it has resulted in a sizable black market of unlicensed firearms, there are millions if not tens of millions of them in circulation all over Europe. Not a development I would have liked to see. My son got his first permits some six years ago and had I not been around to guide him through everything, it would've been more than an average teenager would have wanted to handle.

    Unfortunately there seems to be no going back to the old system that really worked. I bought my first pistols at the age of 15, after a 20-minute interview at the local police station, equivalent of $3.5 for the license fee and a "waiting period" of another ten minutes for the clerk to type out and stamp the purchase permits...
     
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  17. Blackstone

    Blackstone Member

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    Indeed, one of the biggest complaints I hear from my German shooting friends, is that Germany makes fantastic guns, but all for export...
     
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