Like most other debates, the gun control argument includes well-meaning people with honest disagreement, political operators who are just looking to score a few votes in the next election, and deluded extremists. Contrary to media mythology, the wacko birds in this debate flock most strongly on the gun control side. Quite a few high-profile anti-Second Amendment types have simply taken leave of their senses, and have no problem saying the most deranged and hateful things into cameras.
For example, take hard-left propagandist Michael Moore. Furious that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid wouldn’t bring Dianne Feinstein’s dopey assault-weapons ban to a full vote (where terrified Democrats still hoping to fool red and purple-state voters into returning them to the Senate in 2014 would have been compelled to vote against it), Moore and equally unhinged CNN host Piers Morgan had the following exchange, transcribed by RealClearPolitics:
PIERS MORGAN: It did cross my mind, how many of these Senators, who in my view, probably do think there should be an assault weapons ban, probably do think there should be universal background checks, but they have decided to go against their principle to protect their political seats. How many would change if one of their kids had been in that Sandy Hook school and gone through [Rob] Portman-like experience? In other words, it was right home to them and their families.
MICHAEL MOORE: Well, I think we all know the answer to that question. if a man with an assault weapon goes into the school where Harry Reid’s grandchildren go to school tomorrow and kills his grandchildren, would he stand in front of that microphone at 5:00 and say, ‘I know how Dianne had to witness the mayor getting murdered and my grandchildren just got killed today but, you know, we can’t get it passed because we don’t have the votes. Would he do that really? I don’t think so.
For those unfamiliar with the reference, Rob Portman is the Republican senator from Ohio who recently dropped his long-standing opposition to same-sex marriage upon learning that his son is gay. If only every legislator’s grandchildren could be brutally murdered, why, then they’d understand the importance of trampling the inalienable rights of law-abiding citizens! These people belong in a mental hospital, not on a talk-show set.
Just try to imagine a pro-life guest and interviewer (granted, I’m really asking you to stretch your imagination with the latter) musing that if only more pro-abortion Democrats could have daughters killed in botched abortions, or grandchildren slaughtered at the hands of a sickening ghoul like Kermit Gosnell, they’d re-think their support for Planned Parenthood. How do you suppose the rest of the media would respond to something like that?
I’m second to none in my contempt for Harry Reid – among the worst Senate Majority Leaders this nation has ever been cursed with – but not for a microsecond have I ever wished harm to befall him, much less innocent members of his family. Is that really such a difficult code to live by, Piers Morgan and Michael Moore?
If you’re inclined to spare a moment of rational analysis for the bloodthirsty lunacy of Morgan and Moore, you might reflect that what they are proposing is government by anecdote, which is the opposite of principled leadership and Constitutional government. The principles by which millions are governed should be decided by reasoned debate, not the personal experiences of a few legislators. Think back to the infamous exchange between Senators Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) a few days ago, in which she wailed that the Constitutional rights of Americans don’t matter because she’s seen dead bodies and cares so very, very much. The entire point behind having a Constitution is to restrain the power of the State, regardless of the current emotional status of a few powerful long-serving legislators. Government power does not automatically grow commensurate with how deeply officials care about something they wish to control.
Also counted among the psychopaths of the gun-control fringe is Virgin chairman Richard Branson, who gibbered on Twitter, “How many more kids need to die in the US before politicians see sense?” and “NRA, NRA, how many kids have you killed today?” In a just world, the NRA would sue Branson into poverty by having every single member file a million-dollar lawsuit against him for falsely accusing them of murdering children, obliging him to back up his allegations with evidence in court. As it stands, let every potential customer for any Virgin operation know that their purchase would be supporting this cretin.
Say, you don’t suppose Richard Branson or his company officers have armed security, do you? Michael Moore sure does. One of his bodyguards was arrested at JFK for carrying an illegal weapon in 2005. If he’s dismissed all armed security from his employment since then, he seems strangely reluctant to broadcast it. How many children need to die before these people see sense, and purge all firearms from their million-dollar estates and billion-dollar presences?
Meanwhile in New York, the Left’s new gun-control hero, Governor Andrew Cuomo, just noticed that the draconian law he rammed through his legislature banned every magazine that actually exists… so he’s calling for repeal of his own law. From the Washington Examiner:
“There is no such thing as a seven-bullet magazine. That doesn’t exist. So you really have no practical option,” New York Governor Andrew Cuomo admitted yesterday at a news conference, explaining why his tough ban on ammunition magazines over seven rounds should be repealed.
Now the bill must be repealed, allowing New Yorkers to purchase magazines that hold ten rounds.
Cuomo explained yesterday, however, that the new law will only allow citizens to put seven bullets in the magazines, unless they are at a shooting range.
This is the same guy who said of the bill he now wants to repeal, “Common sense can win. You can overpower the extremists with intelligence and with reason and with common sense.” New York’s governor and legislators were so busy overpowering the extremists that they didn’t notice the magazines they ruled acceptable for the peons cannot be found anywhere. In an earlier misadventure, they discovered they had forgotten to exempt police officers from the new gun ban.
Cuomo has neither common sense nor intelligence on this issue, any more than Dianne Feinstein understands the Constitution that Ted Cruz patiently tried to explain to her. Their ignorance is a bullet point on their gun control resumes – it’s good that they don’t really understand the weapons they’re trying to ban. The imposition of their urgent wisdom would be unacceptably delayed if they spent time contemplating why American citizens are guaranteed an inalienable right to self-defense, which is not atrophied by the criminal actions of a few – any more than thieves are an argument in favor of abolishing property rights, or slander artists like Richard Branson are an argument in favor of erasing the First Amendment.
For the shameless political operator, gun control is a cynical effort to cadge a few votes out of fearful citizens. For the statist, it’s a chance to dramatically increase the power of government, while pushing back against a constitutional amendment that many regard as insulting the ability of the benevolent State to protect its subjects. And for more than a few, gun control is a psychosis, an expression of hatred for those who resist their compassionate wisdom, and contempt for the unruly, disobedient little people who impudently believe they deserve the same kind of security as high-flying millionaire liberals and government officials. Some of them don’t really care all that much about the issue – they just know they dislike the people who support gun rights, and want to enjoy watching them lose a political contest. And some of them get loopy because they just don’t understand why the government can’t pass laws to eliminate violence. They’ll never stop trying to find the legislative path that leads back to the Garden of Eden.