An Open Letter To President Trump and Congress

Dear Mr. Trump and every member of the Senate and House of Representatives:

I have read over, with a sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach and growing anger in my spirit, the text of HR 5087, the Assault Weapons Ban of 2018. This piece of legislation would do precisely zero to stop the events of February 14, 2018, in which a shooter entered Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School and killed 17 people, wounding 14 others. This is, instead, a gun- and power-grab by certain members inside and outside of our government, bypassing the Constitution. I have written about this before in this venue, but this bill seems to be a distillation of it. The gun-grabbing left is trying to make good on their comment that “the 2nd Amendment only applies to weapons like muskets that existed when the Constitution was penned.”

I know many people feel the need to “do something” in their grief, but doing the wrong thing can compound the problem. Say you are in a fender bender. Running your car over the other driver is inappropriate and will make your predicament far worse. Punishing law abiding citizens and infringing on their Second Amendment rights to keep and bear firearms is the wrong move. Especially when it would, like it’s predecessor, have no appreciable effect on mass shootings. Remember, Columbine happened in the midst of a ban. Instead, you and your colleagues should be questioning why law enforcement failed so completely, and their seeming incompetence to stop a shooter who clearly announced his intentions. Why was the Broward County sheriff’s office was called to the shooter’s house somewhere north of 35 times since 2010, yet never followed up? Why did the FBI fail to investigate the clear and present danger that this person represented, even after getting multiple calls about the shooter, at least one of which included his name and the fact that he “wanted to be a professional school shooter? Or that the day of the shooting, why there were four deputies cowering behind their cars, while victims inside the building were desperately calling 911? Why did the captain arrive on scene and ordered a perimeter set up, to contain the shooter inside of the building where he had hundreds of unarmed victims, instead of sending her armed troops in to neutralize him? Meanwhile, a Parkland police officer on his day off, who was watering the baseball field, heard the sound of gunfire and ran into the building in shorts and a t-shirt, and rescued some of the shooting victims. Thus, the failure seems to reside in the hands of the people who let this shooter, as well as the Texas church shooter slip through the cracks. And yet, you think that we should turn in our arms and trust these very same police forces who dropped the ball so many times at the local and federal level. This shooting was not the fault of the NRA, not Dana Loesch, and certainly not the law-abiding American who has a Constitutional right to keep and bear arms. It was the fault of the shooter himself, aided and abetted by the police and FBI, and vindicated by the Congress.

Regarding the proposed legislation, HR 5087, it is nothing more than a liberal’s wet dream that hamstrings the 2nd Amendment by banning guns that do things like, oh, shoot bullets. It was obviously drafted by people who have never purchased a weapon, and know very little about them. This is why many of the features they describe, like barrel shrouds and muzzle brakes are cosmetic changes that do not make the weapon deadlier, and the so-called high capacity magazines is also a misnomer. The M-16 and AK-47 have shipped with 30 round magazines for 50 and 60 years respectively, so the 30 round magazine is standard capacity. Besides that, the Florida shooter used 10 round magazines, so this legislation would have done nothing to change the shooting. Of course, murdering 17 people is also against the law, so why pile on more paper of laws that a lawbreaker is going to break anyway? Unless this is not about stopping lawbreakers, but rather a step to disarm the American people.

It has always struck me as a little insulting and a lot disingenuous that these are called “assault” weapons. This is done because of the emotional loading on the term. It sounds enough like the term assault “rifle,” which has an actual military definition. That definition includes the ability to fire fully automatic or in burst mode…Which commercial AR-15s and AK-47s most decidedly do not do. The so-called Firearm Owners Protection Act of 1986, the Gun Control Act of 1968, and the National Firearms Act of 1934 prevent civilians from having automatic weapons. So politicians have taken to referring to these weapons as “assault weapons” to paint them in a negative light, even though they are no different in function than a semi-automatic pistol or hunting rifle, or shotgun…Which appears to be why this bill attempts to ban all semi-auto weapons.

There are several points that I feel need to be reiterated. Assault is a behavior, not a device. If I were to throw a rock at my neighbor, the rock could be considered an assault weapon. If I got into a road rage incident, wouldn’t my automobile be an assault weapon? The media is telling a false narrative, that fewer guns (since they can never achieve no guns) will stem crime, stop mass shootings (even though over 98% are in so-called gun-free zones). They blithely ignore that while 10,000 to 15,000 murders occur with a gun, 500,000 to 1 million lives are saved by a good guy with a gun.

According to the FBI crime statistics for 2016 (available from https://ucr.fbi.gov/crime-in-the-u.s/2016/crime-in-the-u.s.-2016/tables/table-12), you are 4 times more likely to be stabbed to death (1604 instances) than be killed by rifle, any rifle (374 times). Additionally, in 2018, to date from Jan 1, 2018 to Mar 3, 2018 at 9:34:22 AM (please see http://www.romans322.com/daily-death-rate-statistics.php), there have been 1917 murders by gun (excluding suicides), while drunk driving deaths are at 5640, nearly 3 times the number. I don’t see anyone suggesting banning cars or knives. And compare the 1917 gun murders to the number one cause of death – abortion. There have been 182,197 deaths by abortion in the first three months of this year…95 times the number of lives taken by abortion than by gun. So tell me again, why are we still funding Planned Parenthood with our tax dollars, and considering violating the Constitution for law abiding citizens based on a false narrative?

Finally, you and your colleagues walk around with armed security. Are you that much better than the people you represent that you would take their ability to defend themselves away from them? And please don’t try to sell me a fiction that they do not need such weapons to defend themselves, because nobody will have them. There is no way in creation that you are going to get all of the guns, regardless of what legislation you enact. There are areas of Chicago, Baltimore, DC, Detroit, all major cities where the police won’t even respond. Yet you are going to take the most effective means of defending oneself, one’s family and one’s property away from us. And We the People are to form that “well-regulated militia” to stand against a tyrannical government, which the extreme far left wants to enact. Not the National Guard or the Federal military, which serves the Constitution, but receives orders from government, not the police forces or FBI, which, again, receives orders from government forces, and it appears that the FBI’s internal corruption is being laid bare for all to see, which circles back to the entire point of this letter, that the FBI and the involved sheriff’s department could have prevented this tragic chain of events.

I urge you to think of the people you are representing. I live in a rural area of my county. In the event of a home invasion, a 911 call would be a 20 to 30 minute wait for deputies to get to my house. And Congress and the President expect me to sit around and wait, disarmed, for them to arrive? At that point, In the song, The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald, Gordon Lightfoot penned the lyric:

Does anyone know where the love of God goes, when the waves turn the minutes to hours?”

When bullets are whipping overhead and the bad people are at the gates, time dialates and everything lasts forever. As a disarmed citizen, with Bad People who forgot to turn in their guns (which you know is the next step) hunkering down and waiting for the police who may or may not get there “in time” is not an option. Remember, police do not carry guns to protect the population, they carry guns to protect themselves. The Supreme Court ruled in 2005 that the police did not have a constitutional duty to protect a person from harm. And honestly, the Second Amendment says that I have a God given right to defend myself, and I am not going to allow you to limit that right.

So I urge you to oppose this bill that clearly violates the Constitution and is sure to have unintended consequences of it’s own that will likely grow into something that you have no control over. And remember, the creating a gun registry, then confiscating weapons was a tactic that has been previously embraced…By Adolf Hitler…Josef Stalin…Pol Pot…the Ayatollah Khomeni in Iran. None of which are known for their  of democracy or respect forhuman rights. This is America, and has a Constitution that guarantees the God-given rights to every one of her citizens. Do not allow the power-mad try to disarm America.

Sincerely,