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.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Democrats don't have to be enemies of gun rights (and if they're smart, they won't be)

Regular readers (I might be flattering myself) have probably noticed that, after the Gun Guys, my biggest source of ridiculous claims to refute is Josh Sugarmann, head cheerleader of the Violence Policy Center. In a recent article in the Huffington Post, Josh expresses his dismay over the fact that some Democrats have discovered that a platform that includes civilian disarmament (remember, I despise the term "gun control" in the sense in which it's generally used) has become an increasingly difficult sell. Acting on this realization, these Democrats have started moving away from attacks on gun rights, and in some cases, have even started actively supporting them.

This, of course, is a nightmare for the gun rights deprivation lobby, because it would be the beginning of the end of them having a major political party as puppets to advance their agenda. So Josh desperately tries to tell Democrats that supporting gun rights will never bring Second Amendment advocates over to their side. In his words,

There are, in fact, two parties for the pro-gunners. Unfortunately for Democrats, they're the Republican and Libertarian Parties.
He backs this claim up this way:
For proof, look no further than the November 2006 issue of the National Rifle Association's America's 1st Freedom magazine. The November 'Choose or Lose' issue is little more than a 64-page attack on Democrats, with a particular focus on Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee head Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA).
This ignores the fact that the NRA has donated $20 million to pro-gun Democratic candidates for their campaigns in the upcoming elections. The particular focus on Schumer and Pelosi in the "Choose or Lose" article is precisely because of their extremism in attacking the Second Amendment.

Granted, it has been largely true that passionate advocates of gun rights want nothing to do with the Democratic party. What Sugarmann doesn't bother to mention is that it doesn't have to continue to be true. Democrats can take away the near monopoly that the Republican party enjoys with regard to the pro-gun vote, simply by abandoning attacks on the Constitutionally guaranteed fundamental human right of the individual to keep and bear arms.

Admittedly, the returns on such a reversal of positions might be meager at first. Democrats will have to overcome decades of gun rights activists' mistrust, stemming from the words and actions of powerful Democrats like Diane Feinstein, Edward Kennedy, Chuck Schumer, and many others (on the local and state levels, where battle lines over gun issues have not always been drawn along party lines, Democrats could benefit from a pro-gun stance much more quickly).

What would such a move cost Democrats? Very little, it seems to me. I haven't seen statistics, but I would be almost certain that the number of people who are so passionately in favor of restrictive gun laws that the issue dominates their voting decisions is extremely small (significantly less, I would wager, than the number of gun rights activists who view it as a make-or-break issue).

Democrats who can convincingly claim that they will uphold the entire Constitution, including the Second Amendment, could find themselves the beneficiaries of gaining the alliance of at least part of what may be the most loyal, motivated voting bloc in the country.