Saturday, March 30, 2013

Imprimis hits the bullseye

I would like to refer you to a very good article about the Second Amendment by Edward J. Erler, a professor of political science at California State University, San Bernardino. Do not roll your eyes. He is among the academics who have taken a broad-minded look at gun rights, rather than a frowning, squinting and supercilious one. There are a few some such, just not enough of them. He writes:

Now it’s undeniable, Senator Dianne Feinstein to the contrary notwithstanding, that semi-automatic weapons such as the AR-15 are extremely well-adapted for home defense—especially against a crime that is becoming more and more popular among criminals, the home invasion...

Consider also that assault rifles are rarely used by criminals, because they are neither easily portable nor easily concealed. In Chicago, the murder capital of America—a city with draconian gun laws—pistols are the weapon of choice, even for gang-related executions. But of course there are the horrible exceptions—the mass shootings in recent years—and certainly we must keep assault weapons with high-capacity magazines out of the hands of people who are prone to commit such atrocities.
The shooters in Arizona, Colorado, and Newtown were mentally ill persons who, by all accounts, should have been incarcerated...
Read more: 

The article proceeds to a closely reasoned analysis of what the Second Amendment means, discussed in light of Heller and the ways in which the right to arms relates to bedrock principles of liberty, and ideas of the individual versus the collective. A longtime reader of this blog told me that it reads sorta like one of my readers got a piece published in Imprimis, but I can claim no credit. I doubt  Dr. Erler ever heard of me. It is more like he too is listening to the echo heard round the world, which still reverberates from the shot heard round the world.

Mankind will be free. Our enslavers have always been better armed and better read, which is why, if we are smart, we don't let that happen. Free press, free speech, go to church where you want, plenty of guns to go around... Anyone who is against these things is potentially a danger to self and others, and our forebears had a name for that. It is a sad day when these principles are cast in doubt. They are principles that should need no defending. They are beyond rational challenge. That is why it is disturbing to hear them challenged, because the basis of the challenges always work out to something a bit irrational; gun control always has in it an element of 'wishing will make it so.'

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