News Americas, NEW YORK, NY, Fri. Feb. 23, 2018: O Holy Night …. America was brightly shining Wednesday night!
Alexander Hamilton would have been the first to agree but mre on AH later.
The Town Hall held in Parkland, Florida, Wednesday night was impressive.
Never have we seen quite an assemblage like it, and with a national TV audience, expose the blatant abuses of the gun lobby and its supporters.
The question is what will it mean if anything significant?
The fact is, the very BEST case scenarios are:
1) The age requirement for buying a rifle will become 21;
2) Bump stocks, which makes deadly rifles even deadlier, will be outlawed;
3) Security checks for gun buyers will be expanded.
It is very questionable, if and when any such Congressional legislation, will be passed and signed by President Trump. All three measures have long been proposed by some in Congress and gone nowhere.
But assume all three get approved and become law next week. Please don’t waste any money betting on this happening next week … but if it did. nothing will change, and worse, that will be the very last gun legislation we would see for a very long time.
Congress will be widely applauded by many for being so brave and responsive to the American people. Bla, bla, bla!
What making these 3 minor changes should be named is the Congressional Incumbent Protection Act. Members of the Senate and House, who would have been vulnerable at their next election to be thrown out in favor of candidates who will pursue REAL change, will fade away.
Indeed, if the many rightwing members of Congress and the NRA are smarter than I hope they are, they will lead the campaign to make these 3 changes as a great strategy to avoid REAL change.
Fortunately, for the rest of us, that is unlikely, because the mantra of the NRA and their many supporters in Congress is FEAR; sadly convincing too many Americans that any new gun legislation is a conspiracy to end all gun possession in America.
That strategy has served the NRA, gun companies and their various supporters in Congress and all over, very well for a long time. It has allowed the NRA to take effective control of Congress, by buying the allegiance of many Republicans in Congress, and most of all, their so called leadership.
So what did Wednesday night in Parkland, Florida mean?
It may mean nothing or be a pivotal moment in American history. I have explained why it may well mean nothing above. What would it take to make it a pivotal moment in American history?
Guts and a real plan!
Yes, that is asking a lot; even more that one of the undercurrents since last week’s massacres was about all sides coming together in “friendship” and everyone agreeing on new steps to control gun violence. All that will do is result in the lowest common denominator again, as I explain above.
The only good way we can all come “together” is the physical way that happened Wednesday, when Marco Rubio and the apologist for the NRA, show up so they can be grilled and exposed as “enemies of the people.”
Any legislation that U.S. Senator Marco Rubio and the NRA will support, in cooperation with all of us who want REAL change, is worthless. Infact, less than worthless. That is obvious. Again see my explanation above.
So what will real change require? SMART brave determined strategy.
Real strategy requires a very specific plan; one that does not foolishly seek to get the support of “everyone.” That should be obvious from the NRA’s success. The vast majority of Americans, and many in Congress, disagree with them, but the NRA always WINS; not by seeking widespread consensus but by motivating and energizing their base and blocking the rest of us.
Want real change? hen let’s propose REAL change and fight for it.
If potentially millions show up in Washington, DC for a march against gun violence and all we will hear are general denunciations, all that energy will be largely wasted. Not if everyone is supporting specific proposals.
So propose your own. Here are mine here in Trump’s America:
1) NATIONAL licensing of all gun owners.
Two points here. We have all the evidence we need, leaving any such process up to 50 individual states, each with its own so called rules, that no licensing would be a disaster. Plus, the NRA would undermine the process.
Guns are NOT a state issue. There is no such claim in the U.S. Constitution.
As for the concept of requiring a license to be a gun owner/user, nowhere in the U.S. are you allowed to operate motor vehicles without a license, practice many professions without a license, and not one of these licenses involve anything as dangerous as guns. Licensing is necessary.
Immediately, a very large percentage of those who may be likely to commit gun violence will not meet the requirements of obtaining licenses to be able to buy guns because they don’t have the required license.
Further, licensing gun owners will provide the same kind of safety driver licenses do. You must pass various tests to obtain a driver license.
2) Registering of all guns. Again, just as all motor vehicles must be registered and have appropriate proof they have been registered.
3) Ban all private ownership of assault weapons and all devices that work with assault weapons. And let’s put an end to the scam that it is impossible to name all weapons that qualify as assault weapons. The answer is we do not have to maintain such a list. Rather the federal gov’t will maintain a list of all weapons that are NOT assault weapons. If the weapon is not on the list, it is an assault weapon. Manufacturers who produce new kinds of weapons must submit them to the federal gov’t to determine if it is an assault weapon or not.
4) Anyone in the United States must be 21 to register a gun and since you will need to produce your license to purchase any fire arm, no one under 21 will be able to do so. Parents who want their children to learn about guns and/or go hunting with them, can apply for a special child’s permit that will allow that child to use guns under strict supervision.
That’s it a REAL 4-point plan to change the dynamics of gun violence in America and make us all far safer. All 4 proposals are very logical, except if the NRA and conspiratorial right wingers control the national agenda.
If hundreds of thousands, even better millions, show up in Washington, DC with a plan like this, we can solve the problem unique to the United States.
For those, the NRA will claim this is a radical agenda to destroy the United States and what are they talking about. It no more restricts Americans right to own or use firearms than do drivers licenses and licensing vehicles prevents Americans from driving. Certain individuals, for specific reasons, cannot get drivers licenses. And certain kinds of vehicles, such as tanks, cannot be licensed by individuals to use.
While I should not even bother to answer one point I will. So what if individuals can purchase guns illegally?; how is that a reason for not having legislation or having serious penalties for buying guns illegally. People buy phony driver’s licenses and register vehicles illegally but is that reason for not having driver licenses or for not registering vehicles?
Do I hold out any hope for this kind of logical legislation? NO, of course not. What I am doing, is pointing out how institutionally corrupt Congress is and how much power the NRA and Right Wing Wackos have over our nation.
Yet, far and away saddest of all, is all these may motivate teenagers and the movement they have unleashed to NEVER support a 4 point plan like this because they will be told it goes too far, rather than push back and say no it is not and start a “revolution” for a better America. Too bad.
Instead, they will likely go to Washington on March 24th with a vague mantra about “ending gun violence” and “everyone” coming together. Congress and Trump will enact some crumbs and be applauded for doing so while the NRA complains bitterly, how dangerous these crumbs are while privately thanking their supporters in Congress for doing so little.
And nothing will change and the Losers will Win again as they usually do!
Finally let me conclude this episode with The Great Alexander Hamilton.
If you know anything about Hamilton, you will know these 4 proposals are just like what he would propose today. Hamilton understood the necessary relationship between federal gov’t and states – where the federal gov’t had to declare primacy over the states in certain matters for the greater good of the entire nation. That individual states had no right to override the general good and why if he could have Hamilton would have ended slavery.
Even more specifically, Hamilton knew nothing in the Second Amendment gave any special powers to the states and Hamilton was the Champion of the Doctrine of Implied Powers in the Constitution, which gave the federal gov’t complete powers to pass laws and control various functions of government to meet the most basis mandate of the Constitution he helped draft and signed its first paragraph …
“We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”
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(This entire series is dedicated in honor of Liu Xiaobo)
EDITOR’S NOTE: About The Writer: Arthur Piccolo is a professional writer and commentator and often writes about Latin America for New Americas.