Letter to the Editor

I appreciate the effort of Bruce McClay to clear up two myths on gun control and the Second Amendment in his submission that appeared in The Reflector Sept. 30. Unfortunately, his assertions only further muddy the waters surrounding these subjects. 

It was only a matter of time before a reader brought up the red herring “musket argument.” As a reminder, the purpose of the United States Constitution is to limit the power of the federal government, not the American people. McClay wrote in his piece on guns and the Second Amendment “the arms at that time were flintlock muskets and pistols with a one-round magazine. Imagine if we applied their understanding of ‘arms’ today how many mass shootings would be prevented.”

I doubt any would have been prevented by simply banning so-called “assault rifles,” which in fact they are not. I served 24 years in the Marine Corps, participated in two wars and in my second career, 20 years in law enforcement. I know what real assault rifles are. But our liberal friends and the media in general use the verb “assault” to describe those big black scary rifles seen in Hollywood movies and lousy TV shows. 

Assault is an action by a person or group of people. If I assault you with a golf club, then I suppose I’ve used an assault club. Or running over scores of people with a truck is because the perpetrator used an assault truck. Ill-informed people use incorrect words to describe what facts prove otherwise.

When the Founding Fathers decided that the people should have the right to bear “arms” they were indeed talking about muskets. Well, what do you think those muskets were back then? They were military weapons. They had just won a revolution using those muskets. So, yes, the founders did think “free people” should have the right to own military weapons. As for “the militia,” question who was the militia back then — every adult male between the ages of 18 to 54. Continental civilians had the exact same weaponry the British soldiers had. Now both Democrats and some Republicans are suddenly telling us they need to put restrictions on the type of firearms we should have. 

Question is, if they’re so interested in banning “assault rifles” to protect people, why aren’t they also interested in banning handguns, the type of firearm used in the vast majority of murders? Well, because eventually they will —  gun control is nothing but government control.

In layman’s terms, the Second Amendment says we the people need to be competent enough to protect our country and ourselves against any enemy, foreign or domestic, and the right to own the kind of firearms to do that “shall not be infringed.” 

Mass shootings are rare, and the use of a so-called “assault rifle,” rarer yet. But whenever some nut job goes on a killing spree the Democratic Party uses arguments built on lies, ignorance and deception to push their anti-gun agenda. 

Your so-called myths and lies, Mr. McClay, are less weighty when you look at facts rather than just your own belief and media bias. 

Nice try, but no cigar.

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