Several philosophers have said, “Those who ignore history are condemned to repeat it.” This is true of “gun control.” Every time we have an incident that employs firearms the cry goes up register, confiscate and outlaw firearms. To do any of this violates the Second Amendment to the Constitution. For once, let’s look at the history of arms control.
The first country to implement firearms control was Great Britain. They started in 1890. By 1940 the nation was effectively disarmed with only a few shotguns available to civilians. When they were faced with invasion by the NAZI’s, Winston Churchill, the prime minister, issued an appeal to the United States for arms, so as to arm their civilians. Roosevelt sent rifles-“Taking them from the hands of our soldiers to defend England.”
The National Rifle Association solicited donations of weapons.
Churchill in a radio address stated, “Trains waited at the dock for the ship to come in. Arms were loaded, and sent to every corner of the country. Britain is now able to defend itself.”
In 1946, after the war, the government took up the weapons, put them on board a liberty ship and threw them into the ocean. Britain is once again unarmed.
America’s first effort at gun control came in 1933. Faced with gangs of robbers who marauded throughout the Mid-West, armed with automatic weapons, the Gun Control Act of 1934 came into being. Initially, it banned pistols. Congress bucked at that since more than half of them were carrying pistols. Silencers were included instead. No one bothered to look at where these weapons came from. All, I repeat all of them came from break-ins at police stations, sheriff’s offices and U. S. Army Armory’s.
In 1939, a case on this act, U. S. vs. Miller reached the Supreme Court. They ruled in favor of the act, since the weapon involved was a sawed-off shotgun and not a military weapon. In 2000, the Supreme Court in U. S. vs. Heller ruled that there could not be a prohibition on weapons and noted that in the Miller case the defendant was unrepresented by council as required in Gideon vs. Wainright and no brief was filed on his behalf, leaving him defenseless.
Now, today, another outcry by a liberal president- Make it illegal, and save me from myself. Drugs are illegal, have they disappeared? There was no outcry when a student killed many at a southern college three years ago.
The only nation, except England that outlawed weapons for civilians and took them up was Germany in 1935. Even in places where firearms are outlawed with draconian penalties such as New York, their murder and armed robbery rates are among the highest in the nation.
We seem to miss the point. A freely armed nation is a peaceful nation. In 1975, the Law Enforcement Administration conducted a survey of all traffic accidents in the U. S. over a two year period. Impaired driving was present in 27 percent of them; Speeding was a factor in 61 percent of them; and continuing to today, we have made penalties for impaired driving, either by drugs or alcohol increasingly severe. The percentages remain about the same. There has been no increase in prevention of speeding drivers, despite the fact that impaired drivers were present in the larger number of accidents. Once again, we look in the wrong direction.
By David Creekmore