This is an interesting question for me. For most of my life I thought of the folks with the NRA stickers on their cars as gun nuts — with a heavy emphasis on “nuts.” The notion that everyone should be packing is the message that the media most often conveys.
Then I started to think about this in a different way.
So you have the 2nd amendment to the Constitution:
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.
Contrast that to some laws in California, New York, Chicago and other places where there are some wacky laws.
Here’s where it get’s interesting I think. Gun laws are popular with politicians so they keep passing more of them. The problem with laws is that they only really apply to law abiding citizens. No amount of laws will prevent crime; the definition of criminal is someone who’s breaking the law. Simply criminalizing more things won’t lesson the “Bad” in the world, it just limits what the normal folks can do.
I’ll pick on a different topic that’s a hot button: assault weapons. Ok — why would you want to have assault weapons in private citizens’ hands? It really depends on your definition of what one is.
Simple things make you run afoul of the old law (or current in CA and NY). (No, I’m not going to list all of them)
- Magazine with greater than 10-round capacity
- Pistol-grip on a rifle
- Folding or telescoping stock on a rifle or shotgun
- Pistols weighing more than 50oz
Yes, I’m picking and choosing from the list. But regardless this is odd. There’s no regulation on the number of magazines you can carry for instance, so a 10-round magazine isn’t effective. The fact that you can hold a rifle in a way that might give you more control makes it illegal (telescoping stock and pistol grip). Heavy pistols? Give me a break.
It’s similar to the California ban on guns chambered for the .50 BMG round. Sure, it’s a big ass cartridge that’s nearly 1/2-foot long. It was originally used for machine guns (BMG stands for “Browning Machine Gun”), but now it’s primary military use is snipers. Civilians get it to be able to shoot something similar. The problem with the ban is that it’s stupid. The rifles that shoot this round are around six-feet long. That’s not something that you can conceal. Besides, there are other guns that are just as effective at the same job. It’s a stupid publicity stunt.
If someone wants to hurt someone else they’ll do so; laws don’t stop criminals.
This brings me all the way around to the beginning of my thought process.
There needs to be someone out there that protects our rights, not just make and enforce laws.
Which is the exact same reason I’m a card-carrying member of the ACLU. Not everything they do thrills me, but they are to the 1st amendment what the NRA is to the 2nd.