Gun Rights vs Gun Controls

In a Sunday Wall Street Journal piece about red flag laws as a means of gun control, Zusha Elinson asked whether there are any (other) measures that could unify gun rights and gun control supporters.

I say there are none.  Full stop.

Gun rights supporters want the 2nd Amendment honored as it’s written. That’s it, and it’s that simple.

Gun control supporters, though, don’t care about the 2nd Amendment, except to the extent they’re willing to go to the trouble of repealing it rather than simply ignoring it. This is demonstrated by a couple of things central to their position.

One is their demand to dictate our purpose in having this or that weapon—”Why does anyone need an assault weapon” and “You don’t need that for defense” and “You don’t need that at all.”

The other is their flat refusal to identify their limiting principle on their controls. Where would they stop? What natural condition in our Constitution would set a limit? Gun control supporters refuse to say; they just natter on about “just this sensible control,” or “just that sensible control,” or “common sense controls” generally.

And, of course, it’s their common sense, not anyone else’s.

Concerning Elinson’s main thesis, red flag laws allow authorities to seize, ostensibly temporarily, firearms from people someone has accused of being threats.

The problem with red flag laws is that they have no protections against the flag being raised falsely because the complainer has an axe to grind; or a grudge to push; or someone is oversensitive or overreacting, vis. a grade school teacher who doesn’t want to hear little Sally talking about granddad’s pistol so the teacher denounces granddad; or….

Nor are there any mechanisms beyond pretty words for returning confiscated weapons to the owner once the false flag is identified or the legitimately raised flag’s concern satisfied.

And this: they leave no means of protection for anyone else in the household from which the weapons have been confiscated. Those members are left completely defenseless.

Those last two are consistent with (though by themselves not dispositive of) gun control advocates’ desire to disarm us.

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