President Obama once tweeted “If there’s even one thing we can do, if there’s just one life we can save–we’ve got an obligation to try.” This tweet was in reference to gun control, specifically the Sandy Hook shooting.
Like the President, Democrats routinely crow about doing “something” about guns, yet when they actually had the opportunity to do something Monday, Senate Democrats voted in unison against two gun control measures put forward by Republicans.
Why did the Democrats do this? It’s an easy answer. They don’t really care about gun violence–or, more specifically, they care more about political theatre than reducing gun violence.
The Democrats want a staged war in which they appear to be the underdogs fighting a monolithic Republican/NRA behemoth. They want to look like bleeding-heart warriors slugging it out for the safety of the American people. Had they voted in favor of the Republican gun control measures Monday, they could never have staged their insipid, social media-tailored sit-in Wednesday.
Both Republican bills attempted to balance Second and Fifth Amendment rights with increased measures designed to keep dangerous individuals from getting their hands on firearms.
According to The Hill, one bill, introduced by Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA), would have “reauthorize[d] funding for the National Criminal Instant Background Check System (NICS) and incentivize states to share mental health records with the federal system.”
“It also included a provision to alert law enforcement agencies when an individual who was on a government terror watch list in the last five years buys a gun.”
Additionally, the bill would make it much more difficult for the government to sell firearms in undercover operations such as “Fast & Furious,” which resulted in the death of U.S. Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry.
The second bill, put forward by Senator John Cornyn (R-TX) would have delayed those on the FBI’s terror watch list from purchasing a firearm.
The Texas Tribune reports:
“Under Cornyn’s bill, the attorney general would be given 72 hours to prove there was a probable cause for denying a suspected terrorist the ability to purchase a gun. The measure garnered support from the National Rifle Association but failed on a 53-47 vote.”
Cornyn’s bill takes into account the Fifth Amendment’s guarantee of due process, which the Democrat proposals failed to do.
If bills like Grassley’s and Cornyn’s were passed, law enforcement would be notified if someone like Orlando shooter Omar Seddique Mateen were trying to purchase a firearm–as he was previously on the FBI’s watch list. Following that, the attempted purchase would be delayed for 72 hours as federal officials gathered evidence to show why such a person shouldn’t be sold a firearm. For all intents and purposes, these were truly common sense bills. And yet…
The Washington Post reports that Democrats, as well as Attorney General Loretta Lynch, claim that 72 hours simply isn’t enough time to put together a case, “so they argue this bill would essentially allow anyone on the watch list to still be able to buy a gun.”
The simple answer to the Democrats’ objection would be to extend the 72 hour period until such a time that a case can be made as to whether or not someone on the list should be allowed to purchase a firearm. That being said, there would need to be a minimum time set in stone, so as not to undeservedly deny the Second Amendment right to bear arms to an individual for an indefinite period of time.
But here’s the thing–it doesn’t matter.
If the Republicans had proposed bills identical to the ones put forward by the Democrats, the Democrats would have voted them down anyway. Liberals need this issue to continue to fester. They need it to appear as though Republicans don’t care about human life, and that the Democrats alone are pleading for just an ounce of sanity in a screwed up world.
That’s why they staged their little sit-in on Wednesday. It’s perfectly designed to make maximum social media ripples, while accomplishing absolutely nothing.
I saw it splashed across my Facebook feed–my liberal friends gushing over the sit-in as if the Democrats were Rosa Parks reincarnated.
To my liberal friends (as well as all liberals who are currently bursting with anger-pride) I have questions:
If the Democrats really cared about gun control, why would they vote against any measure designed to make Americans safer, like those proposed by Grassley and Cornyn? Sure, Democrats may believe such measures don’t go far enough, but isn’t a compromise better than nothing? If there’s even one thing we can do, right?
Additionally, if the chief concern regarding Cornyn’s bill was the limited waiting period, why not reach out and attempt to find a compromise instead of just voting it down, then screaming that Republicans are heartless?
If you can’t come up with sufficient answers to these questions, it’s because there are none. The Democrats don’t want compromise, they don’t want real safety, they want an issue they can use against Republicans. It’s that simple. Protecting human life? That’s secondary.