And the band tunes up

More and more advocates for gun control have come out in recent days with demands that we ban all guns.  The Moms and Odd Fellows Kazoo and Kitchen-pot Percussion Society is climbing aboard the wagon to go on parade, expecting the rest of us to follow along or be dismissed.

For example, Fred Hiatt, editorial page editor at The Washington Post, declares his desire for a country without guns.  He asks, “Doesn’t it sound logical? Doesn’t it sound safe? Wouldn’t it make sense to learn from other developed nations, which believe that only the military and law enforcers, when necessary, should be armed.”  He wants us to do the same thing that we’ve done with regard to marriage—in his words, difficult but deep cultural change to overcome opposition.  He sees getting rid of guns as a civil-rights matter, given the number of poor and black Americans who die due to gunfire.  His answer is to get the courts to revisit their interpretation of the Second Amendment.  If that can’t happen, he wants us to vote for an amendment to the Constitution.

Or consider the wishful thinking of Jessica Valenti, columnist for the U.S. edition of The Guardian.  It seems her five-year-old daughter asked her at bedtime whether guns exist in real life.  If Valenti were merely telling a cute story about the things children say, this would be adorable, but instead, she declares her resentment at having “to tell my daughter anything about guns.”  While she attempted an explanation, she hopes that her eventual granddaughter can be told a different answer.  What she means by this isn’t stated exactly, but she tells us that we have an “obscene amount of firearms in this country.”  How can we conclude anything but that her goal is no guns in America?

What is the current number of guns in this country?  (Note, number, not amount, says the English teacher.)  Estimates run around 300,000,000, though this is a difficult number to nail down.  After all, contrary to what Hollywood seems to think, we don’t have gun registries in most states and certainly not nationally.  And if some unknown telephone number calls you up while you’re eating dinner, will you tell the glib voice on the other end about the guns you own?  And more are purchased daily.  According to Charles C. W. Cooke, we bought half as many guns last month as are owned in total in Australia.

This fact alone shows the absurdity of saying that banning guns is like allowing marriage equality.  Estimates about sexual attraction put the percentage of people who are solely attracted to members of the same sex at somewhere between two and ten percent, depending on which study we consider.  It took us decades in this country to recognize the rights of that part of our population.  But we got there.  What do gun control advocates believe would happen if they push hard enough against the already-exercised rights of one third of Americans?

What we see here is that demands that we ban guns is a knee-jerk reaction divorced from reality.  Do we need to respond?  The answer is simple:  Yes.

Just because banning guns would be extraordinarily difficult now is no excuse to relax.  I’ll be accused of being a shill for the gun industry, but go out and buy more guns.  Introduce firearms and gun rights to new people.  Let gun control activists and politicians know that we won’t accept efforts to turn back basic rights.  The trend of gun rights and their exercise is heading in a good direction, and it’s up to each of us to keep that going.

The views and opinions expressed in this post are those of the author’s and do not necessarily reflect the position of

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