Fourier Analyst chose the issue of gun control for a topic, and since I already had material prepared, you can have this right now. This was the first post for my blog. I posted it on April 18th, 2006. It has been slightly amended. How is this for instant gratification???
"Gun Control" is one of the most loaded (pardon the pun) terms in American English. Say “gun control” to some people, and you’ll start hearing that they aren't worried so much about control, as they are worried about gun confiscation.
When we talk about gun control in America, it conjures up all sorts of strange images. Depending on where you stand on the issue, the images could be something like this:
Black-clad federal agents (guys like me) kicking in the doors of the homes of law-abiding, peaceful citizens in order to confiscate their guns at the behest of the United Nations and, destroying American sovereignty, which, as we all know, is guaranteed by suburbanite soccer dads/moms with huntin’ rifles.
If you are on the other side of the fence, politically, the image that may be conjured up is of the government banning all firearms including hunting and target weapons, thereby ending violent crime, after which, all of us will be happy, and safe while we sing Kumbayah, and burn patchouli incense.
Take either one of those scenarios and it will probably have you running for the hills… or to the nearest telephone to call your member of Congress to tell him/her how you think s/he should vote.
The thing is, friends, is that “gun control” isn’t all that scary… at least it shouldn’t be, and I’ll tell you why.
I’m a professional firearms instructor, you know that. I teach other officers and agents how to fight with pistols, rifles, shotguns and submachine guns for a federal law enforcement agency headquartered in Washington, DC. I love my job (most days). I really do. I get to shoot a lot, I get to teach on a subject that I am very passionate about, and I think I make a real and lasting impact on people’s lives.
One of the best things about what I do is the interaction that I get with a group of people that much of the public finds scary or intimidating: The Federal Law Enforcement Officer. Yeah, that’s right, The Feds! The scary people you see in movies that spend all of their time violating your civil rights and making a mockery of The Constitution. Those people that are alternatively imprisoning people for no reason, searching for extraterrestrials, framing O.J. Simpson, planning to take away your guns, and wearing windbreakers and Oakley sunglasses while they do it.
I have news for you, friends: Most of those people spend most of their time, trying to make cases and arrest bad guys. Bad guys like bank robbers; people that would sell our national security to the highest bidder; drug traffickers that poison our youth; inside traders; child molesters; environmental polluters and spies. These things, among others, are what your federal law enforcement people spend their time doing… and believe me, it takes a lot of time, which is both the blessing and curse of our legal system.
Now, I don’t want to make this a diatribe about how great cops are. I am trying to make a point about how silly it is to get ratcheted up about gun confiscation. Whether you are a liberal that longs for the day “when the guns go away”, or a conservative that will give up his gun “when they pry it from my cold, dead fingers”, is really moot, because gun confiscation will never happen here.
Let me repeat that for the slow folks: Gun confiscation will never happen in America.
Here is the thing… most of the people on my side of the badge feel like you do. They have opinions on “gun control” and confiscations, and those opinions come down on both sides of the issue (not everybody with a badge is a gun queer) At the end of the day they realize, and so should you, that there isn’t any agency or group of people that would actually try and make it happen. Oh sure, an assault weapons ban here, a ban on fully automatic weapons there… but at the end of the day, no one is going to do it. Many of my brethren would actually refuse to participate if so ordered. Who does that leave? The Army? Fat chance! Our soldiers (and more importantly, their officers) come from too wide a cross section of society to participate in that kind of activity.
You want my personal view of "gun control"? Here it is: There is absolutely no valid reason for the public at large to own automatic weapons. Left up to me, any adult citizen would be allowed to own and carry concealed handguns... but you'd have to have a license, and you would have to demonstrate proficiency on an annual basis... some bullshit, NRA safety course isn't sufficient.
So, in the end, what does that leave us with? A tempest in a teapot, much ado about nothing, all smoke no fire, etc…
The arguments about gun control mean nothing. The Gun control issue is nothing more than noise... a wedge issue to distract voters from important things and mobilize hard-core political activists on either side during an election cycle.