Mainstream Newspapers Dupe The Public On Gun Debate

Only Bad People Need Guns Says Mainstream Media

It is a curious fact that mainstream newspapers consistently fail to provide their readers with logically sound arguments to support their case against civilian ownership of guns.

Rather, these newspapers prefer to recite banal normative prescriptions, empty slogans, and vague statements devoid of any meaningful content.

Only Bad People Need Guns Says Mainstream Media
Only Bad People Need Guns Says Mainstream Media

They take as a given that civilian gun ownership is untenable. And upon that faulty foundation they spout pious sentiments and posit specious propositions, ostensibly to support a doubtful moral position.

A few days ago, on September 27, 2014, Joe Nocera, an opinion columnist for The New York Times, wrote a piece titled, “Paralysis isn’t Inevitable.” In that Op-Ed Nocera says Congress can act to pass more gun laws. He points to a strategy Daniel Webster  Director of the Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Policy and Research, proposes to accomplish that.

According to Webster, “It’s a loser to call for a gun ban.” Instead {Webster’s} reforms would make it more difficult for criminals to get their hands on guns. Using background checks, {Webster} would keep guns away from people who have a history of violence. {Webster} would raise the age of gun ownership to 21. (Webster notes that homicides peak between the ages of 18 and 20). . . . And {Webster} would mandate something called microstamping, ‘which would make it possible to trace a gun used in a crime to its first purchaser. . . .’ And {Webster} pointed to polls that show the vast majority of gun owners favor such changes.”

Nocera then quotes, with approval, Webster’s obligatory attack on the NRA. “The N.R.A. has been very successful in controlling the conversation and making it about a cultural war. . . . But, I believe that narrative won’t persist.

First, we might well ask how Webster’s strategies prevent criminals from obtaining guns. Clearly, criminals aren’t prevented from obtaining guns. But, a good chunk of law-abiding American citizenry would be precluded from obtaining guns if any of these strategies became law.

Second, Webster says that, “it is a loser to call for a gun ban.” No kidding and rightly so! Yet, in the very assertion Webster admits the need to deceive the public. To get the public to cajole Congress to enact further restrictive gun laws, it is necessary to get the public to think less about the law-abiding citizen’s right to own and possess guns and more about criminals who misuse guns.

Third, knowing that laws against ownership of guns by law-abiding Americans won’t fly, Webster suggests attacking the right to keep and bear arms obliquely, through the device of “background checks.” Note: Webster hasn’t mentioned using background checks to target criminals. Rather, he wishes to target two other exponentially larger population groups: those under the age of 21, specifically those between the ages of 18 and 20, and those whom, he says, “have a history of violence.”

Let’s take a closer look at these two groups. It should be obvious to all Americans that the minimum age of enlistment in any of the armed forces is 17. So, an American may handle sophisticated weaponry at 17, but Webster and Nocera would deny an American citizen, as a civilian, to own and possess a gun until he or she is 21.

You see where this is going. Say a young man or woman leaves the military at age 20. A person risks life and limb to serve his and her Country and is perfectly adept at handling firearms; but, as a civilian, that American citizen isn’t permitted to own a firearm because he or she falls into an age group that, according to Webster, happens to have the highest rates of homicide. Dubious statistics trumps ice-cold logic.

Fourth, and what does the phrase “a history of violence” mean: That a person who had ever said a discouraging word to another person is violent? That a person who was depressed at some point in his or her life is presumptively violent against self and/or against others? That a person who had ever had an altercation with another for whatever reason is violent? That a soldier or sailor or airman who had engaged in armed conflict is violent?

Fifth, Webster and Nocera refer to that “something” or other called microstamping that would enable the police to trace a gun “to its first purchaser.” The emphasis here is on tracing a gun “to its first purchaser,” and not to the criminal who actually used the gun in the commission of a crime. So, a criminal plants cartridge shells at the scene of the crime or steals a gun from a law-abiding firearms owner. The police duly “trace” the gun “to its first purchaser,” and not to the criminal. And, we are to conclude that microstamping is an acceptable forensics tool for law enforcement? Really? Clearly, microstamping of firearms is worse than useless. Apparently, Webster and Nocera think otherwise.

Sixth, and what about those opinion polls? Without referring to any particular poll, Webster says that, in the wake of Newtown, gun owners favor changes to existing gun laws. What changes is Webster referring to? And, what questions were asked of gun owners” whom Webster claims support “changes?” Certainly, one can phrase a question in a multitude of ways to elicit any answer the questioner wishes. And, asking a question about guns, when emotions run high, is not the time to push through legislation.

Seventh, Webster attacks the NRA. The antigun crowd always attacks the NRA. Webster asserts the NRA controls the conversation about guns. If that were only true! Actually, the NRA is forever compelled to repel insistent attacks against it and against the Second Amendment. Webster says the NRA makes the issue about guns a “cultural war.” Webster suggests that any pro-gun argument, which, actually, is a pro Bill of Rights Second Amendment argument, entails acquiescence toward gun violence. That is absolutely false, but Webster creates the association anyway suggesting, ludicrously, that the NRA, by being strong on guns, is soft on crime.

Bottom line: don’t look to the mainstream news media for cogent, well-reasoned arguments. You won’t get them.

Read the rest here at :

About The Arbalest Quarrel

Arbalest Quarrel
Arbalest Quarrel

Arbalest Group created `The Arbalest Quarrel’ website for a special purpose. That purpose is to educate the American public about recent Federal and State firearms control legislation. No other website, to our knowledge, provides as deep an analysis or as thorough an analysis. Arbalest Group offers this information free.

Source: AmmoLand
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