Another school shooting inevitably leads to another call for stricter gun control laws, but while past occurrences have been a bit more subtle, this time, the POTUS apparently saw no need for subtlety. Within hours of the shooting, Obama took to the airways to make his first official statement and, although it was easy to predict what would be said, there was that one tiny surprise: his openly admitting the desire to politicize the shooting at Umqua Community College. Halfway through his speech, he simply laid it out, although he did take care to throw in a complaint aimed at the pro-2A crowd: “And, of course, what’s also routine is that somebody, somewhere will comment and say, Obama politicized this issue. Well, this is something we should politicize. It is relevant to our common life together, to the body politic.” No beating around the proverbial bush, no mincing words, which is almost a relief. Then again, what does an outgoing POTUS have to lose by simply stating his goals openly?
So what did Obama’s speech accomplish? Was it an offering of condolences for those lost and hope for survivors? Was it a message of strength and leadership? It was something else altogether.
“And what’s become routine, of course, is the response of those who oppose any kind of common-sense gun legislation. Right now, I can imagine the press releases being cranked out: We need more guns, they’ll argue. Fewer gun safety laws.” (President Barack Obama’s speech regarding Roseburg, OR, shooting, October 1, 2015.)
Rather than dissect each and every line – “gun safety laws”, seriously? – and trudging through the various implications, let’s get to the crux of the matter: our president doesn’t just want stricter gun laws, he wants to see them gone. Zero. Zip. Nada. That’s how many guns Barack Obama wants taking up space in the homes of American citizens: none. It’s something he’s been pushing in small nudges since day one, something countless people have argued isn’t true. Either they believe no one could be so irrational as to be 100% anti-gun or they believe no president could ever possibly be fully against our Second Amendment rights because they are, after all, rights. Guess again.
“Does anybody really believe that? There are scores of responsible gun owners in this country –they know that’s not true. We know because of the polling that says the majority of Americans understand we should be changing these laws — including the majority of responsible, law-abiding gun owners.” (continued from above, from President Barack Obama’s speech on October 1, 2015.)
Here’s the thing. Gun owners come in all shapes and sizes, and that doesn’t apply only to their physical attributes or firearm preferences. Gun owners come in a variety of political sizes, ranging from ardent conservatives to fence-straddling wafflers to the occasional liberal, and everything in between. As a result, there are gun owners who still believe politicians wouldn’t – not couldn’t, but wouldn’t – ever infringe on their Second Amendment rights. They seem to forget the totality with which other rights have been stomped on and the wanton disregard for real public opinion that seems to be rampant in Washington, D.C. And in order to get their way, politicians happily take a small sampling and present it as a representation of the whole, so long as that small sampling lines up with what they want to believe, of course. The mainstream media does that as well, a fact made abundantly clear in the wake of the Roseburg, Oregon, shooting.
“I would ask news organizations — because I won’t put these facts forward — have news organizations tally up the number of Americans who’ve been killed through terrorist attacks over the last decade and the number of Americans who’ve been killed by gun violence, and post those side-by-side on your news reports. This won’t be information coming from me; it will be coming from you.” (President Barack Obama’s October 1, 2015 speech.)
Such articles began flooding the internet within minutes of the shooting, and in no time at all there was an impressive ocean of largely inaccurate information floating around. Eager to be the first to report on the grisly details, various outlets simply went with whatever information they could put their hands on, resulting in the usual errors and widely varying counts of those dead and wounded. Among the misinformation were articles reporting on the number of school shootings this past year, with more than one news source placing it around four dozen. Wait, what? There have been four dozen school shootings in the last year? Really? No, not really. In order to artificially inflate the statistics – statistics Obama blatantly ordered the mainstream media to produce during the course of his speech – they simply included each and every shooting within a certain range of schools. This included suicides and accidents, among others. Reporters apparently saw no need to restrict themselves to actual violent attacks but decided to collect data from every possible incident, which resulted in drastically inflated numbers. The goal of these artfully manipulated statistics is simple: provide the numbers needed to back Obama’s end game; provide the numbers needed to back a push for strict gun control.
“And I would particularly ask America’s gun owners — who are using those guns properly, safely, to hunt, for sport, for protecting their families — to think about whether your views are properly being represented by the organization that suggests it’s speaking for you.” (President Barack Obama’s October 1, 2015, speech.)
With the statistics in place to back the desire for gun control – artificially inflated though those statistics may be – it’s wise to at least give the appearance of attempting to be the voice of reason. If one can cast doubt on the opposition in the same breath, all the better. Obama’s dig at “the organization that suggests it’s speaking for you” clearly refers to statements made by the NRA and, while the NRA may not always reflect each gun owner’s desires with 100% accuracy, they do come close. It’s impossible to mirror the desires of more than 5 million members, because, after all, there’s more than one kind of gun owner out there. Despite that reality, gun owners should be united on one front no matter what, and that’s the one concerning the ability to own their guns. Not the guns they’re told they’re allowed to own based on capacity, color, and whether or not it has a pistol grip, but guns period. After all, you can’t be a gun owner if you don’t have a gun.
Rights are lost bit by bit, piece by piece, little by little. These kinds of changes rarely happen dramatically in one fell swoop, but rather, they happen loss by loss. First they take away the right to own full-auto firearms, which seemed quite logical to a disappointing number of Americans when it happened, then they move forward in baby steps until they’re forbidding magazines above a certain capacity, rifles with certain features such as pistol grips, and so on. As the old joke goes, how do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.
Gun control measures have been around since day one, and measures our fathers and grandfathers probably believed could never possibly be pushed through have done just that. Worse still, they get through based on steps taken in years past. Past generations – and you, yourself – have seen certain gun control measures as either unavoidable or supposedly harmless, failing to understand the full implications. These things do not sneak up on us, but they do happen gradually.
To some, the aftermath of a tragic shooting carried out by an evil man is not the time to bring up political leanings, and they’d be right. But to most politicians – specifically, to our current POTUS – it’s the perfect time. Strike when the iron is hot, and reap the greatest benefits. When the general public is outraged and horrified they’re far more receptive to drastic measures being taken.
Two moments in particular stuck out during Obama’s post-Roseburg speech. First was the following statement: “We know that other countries, in response to one mass shooting, have been able to craft laws that almost eliminate mass shootings. Friends of ours, allies of ours — Great Britain, Australia, countries like ours. So we know there are ways to prevent it.” (President Barack Obama, October 1, 2015) Notice he chose to reference Great Britain and Australia specifically. Great Britain is known for having the most restrictive gun laws in the world. Handguns are essentially prohibited while long guns require a certificate of permission from law enforcement. Here’s the thing: they also have the highest level of violent crime in the world, topping the list with a whopping 1,158,957 violent crimes in 2009 at a rate of 2,034 per 100,000 residents (FYI, second on the list is Austria, with a paltry 133,546 violent crimes in 2009 at a rate of 1,677 per 100,000 residents. Next to Britain, that’s nothing.). Where does the United States fall on the Top Ten Most Violent Countries list? Actually, we’re not on it. That’s how low our violent crime rate is. The United States is one of, if not the, safest nations in the world.
In Australia, which Obama frequently mentions as his apparent golden standard of gun control, they also have an iron-fisted approach to guns. And they made it happen with a large-scale mandatory gun buyback, backing it with bans. While these measures reduced gun violence in Australia, they didn’t reduce the violence itself. Where there’s a violent will, there’s a way.
Countries with strict gun control enjoy spouting off about their low gun violence statistics, something our POTUS participates in gleefully. Here’s the problem: in countries with strict gun control measures, perpetrators simply find other weapons. Sharp implements are a favorite, from knives to scissors, which is why mass stabbings and slashings are soaring in those countries. Yes, mass school stabbings.
Another statistic thrown around in an attempt to prove gun control works is related to suicide. Yes, suicide by gun does drop after guns are banned, but the suicide rate itself does not. When someone wants to commit suicide, they will find a way, whether with a vehicle, pills, or razor. There’s always a way, and when it comes to a sick mind, whether one sick with depression or filled with evil, they will always – ALWAYS – find a means to bring about their end goal.
One other small detail: try to force Americans to give up their guns as Australia did, and you’re likely to have a revolution on your hands.
The second noteworthy moment of Obama’s speech had to do with his actions. On multiple occasions he took things to a rather dramatic level, seeming to blink back tears each time he mentioned children. His supposedly fighting back tears came off as false and ham-handed, and it brought to light a serious issue with our nation’s leader. The office of President of the United States is not a platform for theater. We may have had an actor or two in office – that’s Ronald Reagan, for you youngsters, and he was a president whose shoes our current POTUS couldn’t even hope to come close to filling – but the men leading this great nation should be, well, men. In times of crisis, a show of strength is what we need, not a teleprompted speech read by a theatrically blinking person.
When our nation’s POTUS sees Great Britain and Australia as having gun control standards we should emulate and takes to theatrics during the same speech in the hope to sway viewers with crocodile tears, we are a nation in trouble. He may be the outgoing POTUS, but that doesn’t mean he can’t and won’t do damage in his remaining time in office, and it also doesn’t mean the next POTUS won’t simply pick up where he leaves off.
Obama wants to politicize the shooting in Roseburg, Oregon, so let’s get to it.
Disclaimer: The content in this article is the opinion of the writer and does not necessarily reflect the policies or opinions of US Patriot Tactical.
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