Saturday, April 14, 2012

The New York Times and Gun Control: I

You know, I read the Times regularly and it never fails to amaze me how the owners of the Times get away with half truths, manipulation of the truth and outright lies.  What follows, below, is a response to a question by Andrew Rosenthal.  You can see the original here.  Mr. Rosenthal is Editorial Page editor.  As always, the response sounds reasonable but perhaps it isn't.  I will add some observations.

Q. Has The New York Times decided as a company policy to oppose the right of the people to keep and bear arms without infringement as stated in the Second Amendment to the Constitution, or is this opposition a decision that was adopted unilaterally by the editorial staff/board/ leadership?Have you decided that the 'Bill of Rights' are not meant by the founders to define certain "rights of the people" endowed by their creator, whomever or whatever that creator might be?— Daniel Dorfman
A. As far as I know, The Times has no corporate policy on the Second Amendment. The editorial board’s position is really nothing like you describe it.
It is precisely as he describes it.  Saying "No" and then going on as you have been and hoping no one notices is a trick of  authoritarians through the ages.
We believe that the Second Amendment conveys a communal, or societal, right to bear arms in the interest — as the Framers put it — of a “well-regulated milita.” Please note the use here of the word “regulated.”
The preceding sentence shows the lie.   A communal right is not a right of the individual.  In effect what Mr. Rosenthal is saying is that entities defined by the community have a right to own firearms.  The Police, the armed services and so on.  Well duh.  The implication is that only government entities should be armed, or, rather, have the right to be armed.  That make you a bit uncomfortable?  It has alwways seemed to me that the group that should be most distressed by such an assertion are Jews yet it appears that as a group the Jewish community here espouses such a view.  Plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose.  Jesus Christ.  What the hell are they thinking.  "It can't happen here"?  Amazing.  Anyway ...
We believe that Americans should be allowed to purchase and own weapons, but that reasonable restrictions on those weapons may be imposed by the federal, state and local governments in the interest of public safety. That, by the way, was the position of the Supreme Court last year in a ruling that struck down parts of the District of Columbia’s gun-control laws.
"Reasonable restrictions".  The leftie gun grabbers will never define exactly what they mean.  Until it is a law that is.  Here is a scoop for Mr. Rosenthal and his champagne sipping, Union busting buddies at the Times: GUNS ARE REGULATED!!!  There are 25,000 +/- laws on the books across this great land of ours.  Guns are the most regulated things in our country.  Andrew, may I call you Andrew?  Andrew, you are a smart guy and you know this already.  You are just hoping that your lefty readership is as ignorant as a herd of hogs rooting in a celler, aren't you?  What you want is the elimination of private gun ownership, why not come out and say it?  
Even though that decision also said the constitution conveys an individual right to own guns (with which we do not agree), it said that governments may impose reasonable restrictions on that ownership.
"Reasonable restrictions" again.  Any hint as to what they are?  Bueller? 
Here is our editorial on that decision.
We feel strongly that it is well within the rights of cities, states and the federal government to restrict the ownership and storage of handguns, which are huge threats to the lives of city dwellers everywhere. Ask most police departments. They agree.
"Storage".  How do they do that?  What rights to privacy would one have to give up to assure that a gun owner meets the requirements of Government?   God damn it to hell.  I remember when I could make common cause with lefties like Andrew, when folks on the left were really afraid of greater and greater government intrusion in the private lives of citizens.  Guess it is different when one has a just cause.  Where have I heard that siren song before?  
In urban areas, handguns are used almost solely to shoot other human beings.
Bullshit.  Sorry Andrew, bullshit.  Any proof?  Just emotional argument.  
Those who keep them for collections or target shooting would not be inconvenienced by laws requiring registration of such weapons, or laws that restrict who may buy them, or laws that require them to be stored in homes in safe and secure ways.
Bullshit.  Since when do government regulations not yield inconvenience?   And since when do government regulations not yield ever growing bureaucracies who create more regulations to justify their existence?  And once those regulations aare in place, what recourse does a citizen have?  None.  Sorry Andrew.  This is a non starter.
There should be laws requiring background checks and waiting periods for purchases of all firearms. This is not remotely an impediment to owning or using rifles and shotguns for legitimate purposes. Hunters have to get licenses to hunt. Why not register the weapon?
Apples and oranges.  Background checks are the law now.  Oh my!!!  Did Andrew leave that part out?  It is called NICS and is administered by the FBI and you can read about it here.  Remember those 25,000 +/- laws?  This is one of them.  Let me also say that this system was opposed tooth and nail by gun grabbers.  Why?  Because their agenda is not to make things easy for gun owners, it is to disarm the population of the US. I do hope that you are beginning to see a pattern here.  As far as things being an "impediment".  That remains to be seen since we have not yet befined what "reasonable" is.  BTW, if I already own a firearm a waiting period is irrelevant, isn't it?  Want to bet that Andrew and the Times would disagree with that?  Don't take the bet amigos, these guys will never simplify, they will only make more obnoxious, when it comes to guns that is.  When it comes to anybody getting into a voting booth it is amazing what a "difficulty" can be defined as.  God, this just pisses me off.
People with records of violence or serious mental illness should not be allowed to buy guns.
They cannot.  A number of those 25,000 +/- laws bear directly on this.  I am beginning to think Andrew is a liar.  At the very least, he has not done his homework.
Children should not be allowed to buy guns.
 They cannot, legally.  A number of those 25,000 +/- laws bear directly on this.  I am beginning to think Andrew is a liar.
Gun show operators should not be permitted to circumvent background check requirements for selling guns.
 They cannot.  A number of those 25,000 +/- laws bear directly on this.  I am beginning to think Andrew is a liar.
Automatic weapons and assault-type weapons should be regulated.
 They cannot.  A number of those 25,000 +/- laws bear directly on this.  I am beginning to think Andrew is a liar.  God, this guy is a piece of work.  And what is an "assault-type" weapon?  It turns out that it is any weapon that violates the aesthetic sensibilities of folks like Andrew.  Amazing that they can get otherwise sensible people to parrot crap like this.  And, Andrew, are you suggesting that automatic weapons are not regulated?  That is so ignorant that it must be a lie.
The police department in New York should be allowed to trace weapons that were used in crimes here — including far too often the murder of police officers — to those who sold them to criminals in other states.
Perhaps that is overstepping and the FBI is the appropriate agency to accomplish this.  Or is that too simple?   Should the NYPD have the right of arrest too?  Come on Andrew, this is getting silly.
The federal government should not pass laws that protect unscrupulous gun makers and gun dealers from having to answer for the consequences of their actions in selling weapons to those who traffic in them illegally.
You mean like tort law?  Demonstrate that the current bloated legal environment cannot accomplish this and you can have your damn law.
We do not take an absolutist position on guns. The absolutist, extreme position is to claim that the complex wording of the Second Amendment, written in the 18th century, means that there can be no restrictions on gun ownership in the 21st century.
"We do not take an absolutist position on guns"   WTF do you take us for, Andrew?  Idiots?   Your position is simple:

  • Only government should freely possess firearms
  • Citizens who wish to possess firearms must pass an increasing number of hurdles and be subject to ever more restrictive laws as to what they may own, how they must be kept and how they can be used
  • A program of continuing pressure should be established with the end objective of making it not financially feasible to be in the gun trade in the US
All these things directed at the elimination of private gun ownership.

Boy, I trust the NY Times.

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