Mission statement:

Armed and Safe is a gun rights advocacy blog, with the mission of debunking the "logic" of the enemies of the Constitutionally guaranteed, fundamental human right of the individual to keep and bear arms.

I can be reached at 45superman@gmail.com.You can follow me on Twitter at http://twitter.com/45superman.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

This time, the NRA is dead wrong

I imagine I've made it pretty clear that I am a big believer in the NRA, and that I appreciate what the organization does to protect the fundamental human right of the individual to keep and bear arms (the sad fact is that despite this right's Constitutionally guaranteed status, it still needs this protection). However, being an organization of human beings, the NRA is no more immune from making human errors than any other. My attention has recently been brought to just such a mistake on the NRA's part, and this one is a whopper.

In rating candidates for political office on their stances on gun rights, Congressman Ron Paul (R-TX) was given a "B" grade. His opponent, Shane Sklar (D) was given an "A" grade (neither candidate received the NRA's endorsement). On Sklar's website, he says some fairly encouraging things about his stance on gun rights, but without a record as a legislator (he has never been one), it's hard to know how his promises today would translate to lawmaking actions tomorrow. Ron Paul, on the other hand, has a long and glorious record of being an absolute lion in the fight for gun rights. In addition, contrast Sklar's statement,

I will not support any new laws that restrict the rights of law abiding gun owners. We need to enforce the laws on the books which already restrict gun sales and ownership to criminals and law-breakers,
. . . with this one from Paul:
"I rise today as a firm believer in the Second Amendment and an opponent of all federal gun laws," Paul told lawmakers. "In fact, I have introduced legislation, the Second Amendment Restoration Act (H.R. 153), which repeals misguided federal gun-control laws such as the Brady Bill and the assault-weapons ban. I believe the Second Amendment is one of the foundations of our constitutional liberties."
Sklar promises to oppose any new laws, and to push for enforcement of existing ones, while Paul has shown himself through his actions over a period of years to be a leader in the fight to actually repeal federal gun legislation. There's a real difference in the positions of the two, and it does not favor Sklar.

So why would the NRA spurn gun owners' best ally in Congress for a far lesser candidate? Because Paul voted against the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act. He did this despite his condemnation of the lawsuits this legislation is intended to stop. His reasoning is that Congress lacks the Constitutional authority to write tort laws. I think his reasoning could be debated, but there can be no doubt that his position is based on conviction, and on his reverence for the Constitution. Pretty tough to condemn a person who has that kind of moral courage.

The NRA has done so, though. This smacks of breathtaking pettiness. I urge all NRA members to let the NRA know this is unacceptable. Additionally, a donation to Paul's campaign would be money well spent.

We cannot afford to shove aside our best friend in Congress because he offended the pride of some people high in the NRA hierarchy.