The Gun Lobby: Sophistry

One of the frequent arguments of the pro-gun lobby — the group that feels that God gave them the right to own any kind of weapon they care to own, regardless of the consequences — is that no law concerning weapons should “burden law-abiding citizens.”  The argument might sound good on first hearing, but even the slightest thought should lead one to conclude that it’s ridiculous.

All rights must be subject to reasonable limitations and must always be balanced against the rights of others if we are to live in a just and fair society.  The right to free speech has limitations; one cannot slander another individual without incurring the risk of liability, a “burden” that our common law places on “law-abiding citizens.”   The right to freedom of religion has its limitations; one cannot enslave another human being on the theory — even if sincerely held — that the Bible condones slavery.  Our laws against slavery — the 13th Amendment of the United States Constitution and parts of our penal code, e.g., 18 USC 1584 — constitute a “burden.”

Children have a right to live, and any right to “bear arms” must be reasonably restrained by every child’s right to live.  It’s a shame that reasonable restraints are deemed a “burden” to the gun manufacturers, sellers, and owners, who cannot even tolerate universal background checks.  It’s a national tragedy that our elected representatives may be so gutless as to accept the NRA argument that seeks to avoid any “burden on law-abiding citizens” whatsoever, regardless of reason, regardless of good conscience, regardless of a child’s right to live.


About brucejberger

Bruce J. Berger has published his short fiction in a variety of print and on-line literary journals, including Prole, Jersey Devil Press Anthology, The Awakenings Review, Raphael's Village, Eastown Fiction, Black Magnolias Literary Journal, and others. He also publishes shorts stories for Amazon's Kindle. He is pursuing his MFA in Creative Writing at American University beginning in August 2015.
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2 Responses to The Gun Lobby: Sophistry

  1. Gary Rubin says:

    The NRA is a lobby group, lobbying for those who manufacture guns. The second amendment is just a convenient, “emotional,” hook upon which the NRA can hang its economic hat. But the NRA has otherwise-smart people chanting the following mantra: “I believe in the 2nd Amendment, and my wife/husband/children and I own guns . . . .” Gabriel Giffords’ husband did this yesterday at the beginning of his testimony before a Senate Committee. He said that he and Gabby believe in the 2nd amendment, own guns, and that “we would never give up our guns.” What? Why not? Why does she need a gun? Good heavens — she was rendered near dead, and eight people were killed, by someone with an assault rifle — can’t someone simply say “enough”? We’re arguing about background checks?! We have met the enemy, and he is us . . . .

    • brucejberger says:

      How sad, that victims of gun violence themselves want to make sure that everyone can keep their guns. That’s why we need to start at the beginning, with a repeal of the 2nd Amendment, and then let’s have an intelligent discussion. As long as we keeping sucking up to the 2nd Amendment, we’re not going to make progress on this issue.

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