Memo to The Kiddie Crusaders: Do You Actually Know Anything About Guns?

NRA gun control activists

We get it: You’re mad as hell and you’re not going to take it anymore. Something must be done at once to keep you safe at school. It’s all Donald Trump’s fault. Led by the Pied Pipers of Soros (Oprah and Clooney) you’re going to march on Washington and demand… what? A ban on AR-15s? To A ban on the NRA?

Before you go off half-cocked, do you actually know anything about guns? Of course, yours is a generation that believes in feelings instead of knowledge, slogans in place of logic.

But, just out of curiosity, see if you can answer the following basic questions (no cheating with Google):

1. What does the Second Amendment say? (Anyone? Anyone?) The 2nd. Amendment to the Constitution guarantees freedom of gun ownership. It’s part of the Bill of Rights, one of the first 10 Amendments to the Constitution. James Madison, author of the Bill of Rights, considered it so important that he put it right after The First Amendment’s freedoms of speech and religion. Point of information for those ignorant of history: The American revolution was sparked by gun control – an attempt by the British to control the guns of New England farmers.

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2. Does it refer to an individual or a collective right? The Amendment reads “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.” In District of Columbia v. Heller (2008), the Supreme Court ruled that the amendment refers to an individual right.

3. How many guns are in circulation in the United States? Just rough a number, please. More than 50 million? More than 100 million? Estimates vary, but it’s generally believed that there are over 300 million guns of all kinds in private hands in this country. In a 2017 Pew Research Survey, 42% of Americans said they lived in a household with guns.

4. What percentage are used in crimes each year? Less than .004% (or less than four homicides per 100,000 guns). At the same time, according to data compiled by the FBI in 2013, guns were used to defend life or thwart crime 67,740 times that year, roughly 6 times the number of gun homicides. In 2017, an armed civilian and former NRA instructor stopped the massacre at the First Baptist Church of Sutherland Spring, Texas, with an AR-15-style rifle (the type of gun the kids have targeted).

5. What’s the difference between an automatic and a semi-automatic rifle? An automatic – like a machinegun or M-16 – as the name implies, fires automatically while the trigger is depressed. (For all practical purposes, you can’t own one legally.) With a semi-automatic, like the AR-15 which was used in Parkland, the shooter has to keep pulling the trigger to fire off another round. To further muddy the waters, semi-automatics are often referred to as “military-style” or “assault weapons.” Both are terms coined by the media to make the weapon sound scary. Military-style? The US military hasn’t gone to war with a semi-automatic since 1917.

6. Which cities have the highest homicide rates? The four cities with the highest homicide rates per 100,000 residents are New Orleans (41.68 per 100,000), Detroit (43.82), Baltimore (55.37) and St. Louis (59.29) – all controlled by Democratic machines, all with restrictive gun laws. Compare the foregoing to Waco, Texas (16.74 homicides per 100,000), South Bend, Indiana (16.79), Indianapolis (17.12), and Miami (17.14), all with relatively easy access to firearms.

7. Who funds the NRA? Bete noire of the knee-jerks, the NRA is a membership-based organization, probably the largest in the country, with more than 9 million members. It does receive money from gun manufacturers for its other activities, but under federal law that can’t be used for campaign purposes. Politicians listen to the NRA not because of donations, but because the group represents millions of potential votes for or against a candidate.

8. When was it established – to the nearest century? The NRA was founded in 1871 (in New York City, of all places), almost 100 years before the gun control debate began in earnest, at a time when gun control meant a steady aim. Even today, fighting restrictive gun laws is a small part of the NRA’s operations. Nine presidents were NRA members, from Ulysses S. Grant to Donald Trump, and including JFK.

9. As gun ownership increased since 1970, did the homicide rate go up or down? Down – way down. According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics (part of the DOJ), between 1993 and 2006, the rate of violent crime committed in this country (which includes robberies and assaults as well as homicides), fell 74%. But between 1993 and 2013, the number of privately owned guns soared from 185 million to 300 million. If guns cause crime, as Democrats contend, America should be awash in blood.

10. What role did the FBI play in the Marjorie Stone Douglas High School shootings? None – other than screwing up big time. The Bureau could have prevented the murders from happening, but did nothing. On January 5, almost 6 weeks before the attack, it was contacted by someone described as close to the shooter. The Bureau admits it received information about “Cruz’s gun ownership, desire to kill people, erratic behavior, and disturbing social media posts, as well as the potential of Cruz committing a school shooting.” The warning was described as “specific and credible.” All of the red flags were there. Protocol required that the tip be forwarded to its Miami field office for investigation. If that had happened, Cruz would have gotten a long-term lease on a padded cell and his 17 victims would be alive. Instead of following its own protocols, the FBI did nothing. In fairness to the Keystone Kops and Inspector Clouseaus, they were probably too busy bad-mouthing their president, chasing Russians and fornicating with each other to handle such a trivial matter.

11. Would any type of gun control have stopped the Parkland High School shooter? Short answer no. Long answer, again no. Nikolas Cruz was mentally ill (okay, he’s a sicko), who should have been committed. That he wasn’t is due to a failure of both law enforcement and the mental health profession. Still, he was never convicted of a crime (felony or misdemeanor) or committed to a mental institution prior to the shootings – which would have disqualified him from buying a gun legally. Several of his guns were illegal, which means if he couldn’t have obtained the AR-15 from a licensed dealer, he could have secured it in other ways

12. What is the real goal of gun control? Liberals love to carry on about America’s “gun culture.” Americans are assertive; Europeans are generally docile. If Europeans had a “gun culture,” perhaps they wouldn’t have had communism and fascism. Footnote: Monsters like Hitler and Stalin love a disarmed populace.

I wish the kid crusaders would acquaint themselves with a least a few of these facts. But they prefer screaming their outrage at anti-gun rallies, and mouthing the most inane slogans, to a discussion grounded in reality.

The children who are preparing to march on Washington were indoctrinated by their NEA-member teachers (products of schools of education) to believe that all social ills are the fault of Republicans, and gun crimes are due to lax laws encouraged by the NRA.

Garbage in, garbage out.

First published at GrasstopsUSA.com

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Barb Wire.

Don Feder
Don Feder is a former Boston Herald writer who is now a political/communications consultant. He also maintains his own website, DonFeder.com.

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