Introducing America’s gun owners

Discussion in 'Freedom and Liberty' started by melbo, Jan 29, 2007.


  1. melbo

    melbo Hunter Gatherer Administrator Founding Member

    http://www.gazettetimes.com/articles...ven01_wray.txt

    Introducing America’s gun owners
    [​IMG]

    Commentary

    By Pat Wray
    For the Gazette-Times
    The right of Americans to bear arms, as stipulated in the 2nd Amendment to our Constitution, will soon get a microscopic examination as different presidential candidates establish their positions on gun ownership.
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    I’d like to take this opportunity to introduce the readers of this column, and by extension their candidates, to American gun owners. I won’t pretend gun owners are a homogeneous group, but it’s safe to say that a significant portion of them resemble the folks I’ve described below in their beliefs and actions.

    We gun owners consider guns as tools and nothing more. We don’t own fully automatic weapons. Our guns are used for hunting, target shooting and self-protection, not necessarily in that order.

    We apply for and receive concealed weapons permits, not because we plan to carry a gun around, but because we want be able to legally transport guns in our vehicles without leaving them in plain sight, as the law requires.

    Many of us reload ammunition, and belong to shooting ranges where we shoot for practice and fun.

    We store most of our guns in safes, but often keep one nearby at night, because we are responsible for the safety of our families. We are unwilling to bet our lives on the rapid response of police. We watched as police abandoned entire sections of Los Angeles during the Rodney King riots and know that the stores most likely to escape looting and destruction were those protected by owners with guns.

    We are products of our country’s history; our ancestors warded off Indian attacks and raiders and we are prepared to do the same with the different threats we face today. We teach our children about gun safety and respect at an early age, but we don’t leave guns around where they have access to them.

    We gun owners believe in and obey the nation’s laws regarding illegal use of firearms. We want to see those laws aggressively enforced and transgressions even more aggressively punished, but we do not support the creation of new laws designed to restrict the 2nd Amendment rights of law-abiding citizens. We are willing to consider creative new ways to identify weapons that have been used for criminal purposes and wish the National Rifle Association were more cooperative in this effort.

    We know restrictive gun laws will not prevent events such as the killings at Columbine or Thurston high schools any more than restrictive licensing of drivers will halt road-rage attacks. We cannot legislate an end to personal or societal mental illnesses.

    We have no problem with the present system of registration of guns sold by licensed dealers, but we oppose blanket registration of all guns for two reasons. First, we don’t want the government to be able to take our guns away from us, as totalitarian regimes have done in the past.

    The second reason is similar, but runs on a deeper current, one rarely discussed. We are aware that at some point in the future, we or our descendants may need to fight against the government or an invading force.

    I don’t want to be melodramatic about this fear, but it is ingrained in the culture of Americans in general and gun owners in particular. It runs through our blood from the docks of Boston through Lexington and Bunker Hill. It was seared into our collective soul in Chancellorsville, Bull Run and Antietam. We watched and learned from victims of Hitler and Stalin, Pol Pot, Idi Amin and Slobodan Milosevic. We studied the Quislings and the Vichy. We bled with the Jews and the Tutsis; we are bleeding now with the tribes being slaughtered in Darfur.

    We have learned as we watched, and chief among our lessons is the certain knowledge that an evil government or an occupying force can come to power anywhere. It CAN happen here.

    It is a mistake to confuse gun owners like those I’m describing with extremist groups like Minutemen and Survivalists. We have almost nothing in common with them. Many of us are military veterans with a deep and abiding loyalty to this country. We don’t stockpile ammunition or train for guerrilla action. But we have the option of defending ourselves, our families and our country if the need arises; our guns give us that option, and anyone who wishes us ill would need to take us into account.

    Some gun restriction advocates are trying to say the 2nd Amendment protections refer only to a standing militia, which they think should restrict gun ownership to the military. We reject this argument. Our nation was built on individual freedoms, and our individual freedom to bear arms has helped us provide food and protection through our darkest hours.

    We are law abiding, thoughtful citizens, who happen to hunt and shoot and believe in self-protection. None of these characteristics make us dangerous or overly important. They just make us worth listening to.

    Nice to meet you.

    Pat Wray can be reached at patwray@comcast.net.


    Response:

    A Patriot wrote on January 29, 2007 10:48 AM:" * We don’t own fully automatic weapons. Some of us do * We apply for and receive concealed weapons permits, not because we plan to carry a gun around, but because we want be able to legally transport guns in our vehicles without leaving them in plain sight Some of us carry 24/7 * Many of us reload ammunition All of us should * We teach our children about gun safety and respect at an early age Don't forget to teach them to shoot too. If we don't they will be ill prepared for the future, given the world state of affairs. * We are willing to consider creative new ways to identify weapons that have been used for criminal purposes and wish the National Rifle Association were more cooperative in this effort. BS! I don't want anyone to be able to trace my weapons * We have no problem with the present system of registration of guns sold by licensed dealers Oh yes we do * We are aware that at some point in the future, we or our descendants may need to fight against the government or an invading force. Look around you. It may be sooner than you think. * It is a mistake to confuse gun owners like those I’m describing with extremist groups like Minutemen and Survivalists. These are extremist groups? * Many of us are military veterans with a deep and abiding loyalty to this country. Yep, and proud of it too * We don’t stockpile ammunition or train for guerrilla action. Again, some of us do, and will stand a better chance of surviving any conflict that should arise. * we have the option of defending ourselves, our families and our country if the need arises; our guns give us that option, and anyone who wishes us ill would need to take us into account. This is NOT an option, it is the only reasonable course of action"
     
  2. ghrit

    ghrit Ambulatory anachronism Administrator Founding Member

    Is that copyrighted? If not, every paper in the country should get a letter to the editor.[applaud]
     
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