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Unprecedented and Ineffective: Obama’s Gun Control Measures Can’t Control Crime

utopiaOn Wednesday, President Barack Obama continued a trend he’s exhibited his entire first term in the White House: the use of assumed executive power to advance his agenda without Congress. During the President’s White House press conference on gun control, he laid out twenty-three Executive Orders he would immediately implement in his expanded gun control initiative. These orders are in addition to the President’s stated support for Senator Dianne Feinstein’s bill to reinstate the so-called Assault Weapons Ban, for limiting magazines to less than ten rounds of ammunition, and for ending the ominously named “gun show loophole” through Federal action. All-in-all, the President’s proposals amount to the most aggressively anti 2nd Amendment agenda in modern American history.
These far-reaching gun control measures proposed by the President should come as no surprise to those of us who cherish our 2nd Amendment protections; Barack Obama is aggressively accumulating power in Washington in general and the Presidency in particular. Regardless of where Americans stand on the issue of gun control, we can all agree that any President who disregards the rule of law or separation of powers presents a clear challenge the stability of our Republic, and the rights we enjoy under the Constitution. The President’s Executive Orders today rise to the level of disregard for the separation of powers, while his proposals represent seeming disregard for the Constitution itself, and both represent a greater challenge than gun control as a political issue.
Of the twenty-three Executive Orders the President presented as part of his press conference, many have nothing to do with his stated purpose of curbing gun violence. One of the most absurd of these seemingly irrelevant orders is the clarification under Obamacare that doctors can, and one has to assume are encouraged to do so, ask patients whether or not they are gun owners. Additionally, the legislative changes the President is submitting to Congress are repeats of past gun control acts that did nothing to reduce gun-related crimes in this country. The “assault weapons ban” is a misnomer by almost any object measure, as assault weapons are defined in Department of Defense publications as “fully automatic weapons.” It is already illegal to purchase such arms in America, and none of the weapons included in Senator Feinstein’s bill are assault weapons under this definition. The bill amounts to selective bans, based on weapon cosmetics, which will do nothing to reduce gun-related violence in the United States.
In fact, the Clinton-era “assault weapons ban” banned so-called assault rifles but did not ban semi-automatic handguns that fire the same rounds. This in spite of the fact that 87% of gun violence incidents from 1993-2001 were carried out using semi-automatic handguns. On the whole, however, as gun ownership in general, and handgun ownership in particular, increased exponentially during the time of the assault weapons ban, violent crime decreased dramatically across America. This empirical data indisputably demonstrates that gun-ownership by law-abiding Americans is, arguably, the greatest deterrent to gun violence that could be implemented. That the President and his allies are proposing to unilaterally disarm law-abiding Americans, thus unwittingly tipping the balance of power in favor of those who willfully break the law, is telling of their true motivations. Such a preponderance of evidence against expanded Federal encroachment on 2nd Amendment protections betrays that the Administration is either ideologically blinded to the facts, or has an agenda other than securing Americans from gun violence.
Given what we witnessed at the White House today, the Administration is putting petty politics and entrenched ideology ahead of real reforms that will protect the American people. If Chicago, with its toughest-in-the-nation gun laws, is any indication, Americans should heartily reject the Administration’s misguided response to the tragedies we’ve recently witnessed in Colorado in Connecticut. If we wish to see the frequency of such tragedies diminished, and the rights of responsible Americans protected, we should reject emotional appeals that ignore facts, reason and the science of human nature.

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