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While we may not be able to prevent every senseless act of violence in this country, if there is even one thing we can do to reduce it – if even one life can be saved – we’ve got an obligation to try.

President Obama made a forceful and direct appeal this morning to listeners of his weekly address, pushing his proposed curbs on gun violence as a policy that will make "make a real and lasting difference also requires Congress to act – and act soon."

The specific measures he touted this morning were:

  • Universal background checks for all gun purchases
  • A ban on military-style assault weapons ("These weapons have no place in our communities," he said)
  • A 10-round limit for magazines
  • More cops "back on the job and back on the street."

And while the president said he supported the Second Amendment right to bear arms, he wants to prevent "an irresponsible, law-breaking few from causing harm on a massive scale"—as most responsible gun owners would agree. There's more than one critic of this point of view, he said, and it's up to American citizens to push back:

Already, we’re seeing pundits, politicians, and special-interest lobbyists calling any attempt at commonsense reform an all-out assault on liberty – not because that’s true, but because that’s how they get higher ratings and make more money. And behind the scenes, they’re doing everything they can to protect the status quo.

But this time, it can’t be up to them. It’s got to be up to you. If, like me, you want this time to be different, then I need your help to make it different. Ask your Member of Congress if they support universal background checks and renewing a ban on military-style assault weapons and high-capacity magazines. And if the answer is no, ask them why not. Ask them why an A-grade from the gun lobby is more important than keeping kids safe in a first grade classroom.

In closing, he pulled out the stops and cited a letter he received from an 8-year-old urging him to put a stop to the violence.

To read the transcript in full, check below the fold or visit the White House website.

Remarks of President Barack Obama
Weekly Address
The White House
January 19, 2013

Hi, everybody. This week, I announced a series of concrete steps we should take to protect our children and our communities from gun violence.

These proposals grew out of meetings Vice President Biden and his task force held over the last month with more than 200 different groups – from parents and teachers; to law enforcement and sportsmen; to religious leaders and mental health professionals.

And in the weeks ahead, I will do everything in my power to make them a reality. Because while we may not be able to prevent every senseless act of violence in this country, if there is even one thing we can do to reduce it – if even one life can be saved – we’ve got an obligation to try.

My administration is taking a series of actions right away – from strengthening our background check system, to helping schools hire more resource officers if they want them, to directing the Centers for Disease Control to study the best ways to reduce gun violence.

But the truth is, making a real and lasting difference also requires Congress to act – and act soon.

First, it’s time for Congress to require a universal background check for anyone trying to buy a gun. The law already requires licensed gun dealers to perform these checks, but as many as 40% of all gun purchases are conducted without one. That’s not safe, it’s not smart, and it’s not fair to responsible gun buyers or sellers. An overwhelming majority of Americans agree that anyone trying to buy a gun should at least have to prove they’re not a felon, or someone legally prohibited from owning one. That’s just common sense.

Second, Congress should restore a ban on military-style assault weapons, and a 10-round limit for magazines. Many assault rifles, when combined with high-capacity magazines, have one purpose and one purpose only: to fire as many bullets as possible as quickly as possible. These weapons have no place in our communities.  And a majority of the American people agree with me.

Finally, Congress needs to make it easier, rather than harder, for law enforcement to do its job. We should get tougher on people who buy guns only to turn around and sell them to criminals. And at a time when many communities have been forced to make cuts to their police force, we should put more cops back on the job and back on the street.

Like most Americans, I believe the Second Amendment guarantees an individual right to bear arms. We have a strong tradition of gun ownership in this country, and the vast majority of gun owners act responsibly.

But I also believe most gun owners agree that we can respect the Second Amendment while keeping an irresponsible, law-breaking few from causing harm on a massive scale. That’s what these reforms are designed to do.

None of this will be easy. Already, we’re seeing pundits, politicians, and special-interest lobbyists calling any attempt at commonsense reform an all-out assault on liberty – not because that’s true, but because that’s how they get higher ratings and make more money. And behind the scenes, they’re doing everything they can to protect the status quo.

But this time, it can’t be up to them. It’s got to be up to you. If, like me, you want this time to be different, then I need your help to make it different. Ask your Member of Congress if they support universal background checks and renewing a ban on military-style assault weapons and high-capacity magazines. And if the answer is no, ask them why not. Ask them why an A-grade from the gun lobby is more important than keeping kids safe in a first grade classroom.

Since the tragedy in Newtown, I’ve gotten letters from all over the country – including many from our young people. One of them was from 8-year-old Rachel, who lives in Brooklyn, New York. She wrote: “Please do something so that bad people cannot get guns to kill other people. Children should be safe, especially in school.”

Rachel is counting on us. Let’s get this done for her, and let’s make this country a safer place for all our children to learn and grow.

Thanks, and have a great weekend.
 

###

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 07:00 AM PST.

Also republished by Repeal or Amend the Second Amendment (RASA) and Shut Down the NRA.

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Comment Preferences

  •  I think he's going to get it done. (20+ / 0-)

    We're in a time of shifting public opinion.  For example, the majority now accepts that marriage equality doesn't affect the lives of straight people in any way.  That's a huge shift.  Hopefully, we're reaching the moment when the majority recognizes that sensible regulation of guns doesn't affect the lives of ordinary gun owners either.

    Except in the bastions of conservatism, it should get harder and harder for politicians to explain away their positions, especially when President Obama has called them out as favoring the NRA's money over their constituents' safety.

    If he tackles climate change in a similarly passionate way, and also takes on immigration and electoral reform, he'll have an extraordinary legacy.

    "Why reasonable people go stark raving mad when anything involving a Negro comes up, is something I don’t pretend to understand." ~ Atticus Finch, "To Kill a Mockingbird"

    by SottoVoce on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 07:11:54 AM PST

  •  Excellent---Love it--campaign style effort to get (12+ / 0-)

    the people behind him.

    "Call your congressman"  
    Pressure these bastards.....no he didn't say that, but that's what he means.

    Good for him.

    Let's help him out....

  •  If each of us gets active in gun control (17+ / 0-)

    Congress will get over its fear of the NRA
    and start to be afraid of us.  

    How does "A million mom march" sound?

    If cats could blog, they wouldn't

    by crystal eyes on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 07:16:46 AM PST

    •  Time & Location... (7+ / 0-)

      I'm in...

      I do benefits for all religions. I'd hate to blow the hereafter on a technicality. Bob Hope

      by bluebuckeyewmn on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 07:24:58 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Ok, let's start the negotiations: (4+ / 0-)

      For example, I'll get a bit more enthused about gun control when the Patriot Act gets repealed.

      Even more so when we return to habeus corpus.

      Include severe reductions of funds to that octopus of agencies birthed in the name of holy "National Security" that ineffectively spies on citizens.  You know the ones I'm talking about - the ones that can't find a crazy buying 84000 rounds of ammo on-line but prosecutes whistleblowers relentlessly.

      I'm all in when we have a full press expose' of the federal response to the Occupy movement and reconciliation for those outrages against citizens with a grievance.

      Ok, the last two will help me get on board.  But the first two would provide a bit of reassurance to the paranoids out there who see gun control as one method by which citizens lose their right to disagree with the government.

      Government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth - Abraham Lincoln

      by Gustogirl on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 08:22:33 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I just want to know where OWS was when (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Gustogirl, Naranjadia

        I couldn't get a job that supported me because I have a uterus.  Where was the outrage about police states during the decades when driving while black could get you killed.  OWS appeared when white guys who were always safe on top of the ladder got booted down to the level the rest of us have endured for our lifetimes.  

        As for privacy, I'm pretty sure that's a nonstarter since Amazon knows my bra size, how many birds I own, what I read, where I blog, exactly how feminist-leftist-annoyed I am, where I live and how much I knit.  Homeland security can't be more efficient than serious marketers.

        I'm not looking for a love that will lift me up and carry me away. A love that will stroll alongside and make a few amusing comments will suffice.

        by I love OCD on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 08:53:34 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  more cops (10+ / 0-)

    is the last !@#$%& thing we need.

    end the drug war:  massive reduction in gun deaths and cops would be free to pursue real criminals instead of potheads.

    Please don't dominate the rap, Jack, if you got nothin' new to say - Grateful Dead

    by Cedwyn on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 07:16:56 AM PST

  •  One less gun in the hands (6+ / 0-)

    of one less crazy person

    One less Bullet in one less gun.

    Remember the NY City Police Department some  the best trained police officers in the country onlyhit what that they shoot at 18% of the time.

    I want 1 less Tiny Coffin, Why Don't You? Support The President's Gun Violence Plan.

    by JML9999 on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 07:18:40 AM PST

    •  so you're against (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JML9999

      more police?

      the purpose of the second amendment is to promote a well-regulated militia, in the same sense that the purpose of the first amendment is to promote a well-informed electorate.

      by happymisanthropy on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 09:11:33 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  If they can't hit the broad side of a barn (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        blueness

        http://www.google.com/...

        being as well trained as they what's a school staffer with a crash course going to do. Other than the Physical Police presence being a psychological deterrent collateral damage seems to be most likely outcome especially around small children.

        The added danger is that if there is agreement on police in schools how long before austerity fetishists downgrade this to "private security" in the lowest common denominator.

        I want 1 less Tiny Coffin, Why Don't You? Support The President's Gun Violence Plan.

        by JML9999 on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 09:38:28 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Not a pundit, politician, or lobbyist.... (4+ / 0-)

    .....and I'm calling it an all out assault on our liberty.  No more gun bans, no registry, no magazine bans.  While I'm sad I have to fight the President, I won't back down.  It is wrong to let fear drive an illogical and irrational drive to assault our civil liberties.

    There is no real difference from this and the assault on our 4th & 8th amendment rights in the aftermath of 9/11, except that now it is from the left whereas then it was from the right.

    •  If it were really "common sense" (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      noway2, Samulayo

      they wouldn't be concentrating on the one gun type that kills the fewest people in this country each year by many orders of magnitude - assault-style rifles.

      Let's ban cars first - drunk driving =10,000 deaths per year.  Assault rifles? less than 50.

    •  Meanwhile, empirical evidence, aka (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Naranjadia, nominalize, blueness

      actual reality--not emotionally driven, irrational, or illogical lashing out--indicates quite clearly that countries with very strict gun controls have fewer gun related deaths than America while at the same time having a population that can own firearms if they really want to. So the 2nd Amendment wouldn't be violated, in other words, even with very strict controls.

      •  great (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        noway2

        but empirical evidence also shows that their murder rates were already below ours to a similar or greater degree before they passed strict gun control.

        so, the evidence does not suggest causation.

        the purpose of the second amendment is to promote a well-regulated militia, in the same sense that the purpose of the first amendment is to promote a well-informed electorate.

        by happymisanthropy on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 09:15:34 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Notice the shift from "gun related deaths" to the (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          blueness

          more general "murder rates."

          It's like they can't help themselves. Shift goalposts, make a bunch of irrelevant analogies to alcohol or cars as if either of those had as their sole purpose to slay living things, and just equivocate or obfuscate their way through an argument.

          In their natural setting these addicts, dear reader, can't help themselves but to reach out to any irrelevancy or fallacious syllogism to justify their strong emotional, irrational need to possess instruments of death.

          •  If you think there is a difference (0+ / 0-)

            between someone murdered with a gun and so done murdered with a car and vodka, please be tactful enough not to share your opinion with the families of the victims.

            Studies also show that countries with more car ownership have more car-related deaths......

            I think I read that in the pages of 'Duh' magazine.

            •  Your comparison is intellectually (0+ / 0-)

              bankrupt and dishonest. There isn't any valid connection between drunk driving and shooting people. None. It's literally that simple.

              What's more, even if there were a connection, it's a ridiculous argument for gun "enthusiasts" to make because we heavily regulate ownership of cars and use of alcohol. So, by all means, continue to make the completely bogus connection if you like, but understand that it doesn't change the core point: that gun ownership ought to be heavily regulated.

              •  Sorry the facts disturb you. (0+ / 0-)

                Drinking and driving is a choice, no less than pulling a trigger is.  They can both cause murder.  The difference is that there is never a good reason to drink and drive, literally never.

                In that sense you are correct, there is no comparison that is not bogus.

                As for regulation of automobiles vs. firearms, both are heavily regulated, but only one is a civil right guaranteed by our Constitution.....care to guess which one it is?

                Hint: it isn't the one that kills vastly more people than the other.

                •  You haven't presented any facts. You have (0+ / 0-)

                  presented a piece of statistics trivia coupled with a bogus analogy that makes your condescension hilariously ironic, considering you haven't actually advanced an argument.

                  •  Is this the full substance of your retort? (0+ / 0-)

                    Or do you actually have an argument to make?

                    My argument is clear: those murdered by automobile are no less dead, nor were their lives less worth saving, than those murdered with firearms.  There are vastly more people murdered by automobile than by rifles of all sorts (including those not likely to be targeted by Sen Feinstein's imminent bill).  I will go further: since, on average, 27 Americans are murdered by drunk drivers every day, yet gun banners have not led the charge calling for mandatory breathalyzer lockouts or a ban on standard capacity transportation (or indeed expressed any degree of discomfort with this massive loss of life), their motives in this ill-starred assault on our civil liberties are at least suspect.

                    As for your argument, is there more to it than mere hoplophobia?  Will you conflate murder with suicide or justifiable homicide?  Will you recognize that rifles of all sorts are less likely to be used to ruder anger human being than hammers and clubs?

                    I hope to find out presently.

  •  Any gun control measure w/o a buy-back (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    litho

    provision is meaningless.

    Form follows function -- Louis Sullivan

    by Spud1 on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 07:37:04 AM PST

  •  Good work sir! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cotterperson, 88kathy

    Now lets get this thing done!

  •  Excellent, excellent! (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    88kathy, litho, blueness

    He's got lots of support! A online poll published today from our small-town paper in the Arkansas Ozarks:

    Readers were asked: “Do you support the proposed gun-control initiatives?” There were 1,180 responses:

    » 1,069 said “All”

    » 93 said “None”

    » 23 said “Some”

    http://www.baxterbulletin.com/...

    "Let each unique song be sung and the spell of differentiation be broken" - Winter Rabbit

    by cotterperson on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 07:38:06 AM PST

  •  "You need a background check to get a puppy" (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    88kathy, cotterperson, Naranjadia

    just heard on MSNBC, Melissa Harris Perry... not sure who said it...

  •  America is making a foundational (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cotterperson, Samulayo

    Decision , Right Now.  We are deciding that allowing 20children and their teachers to be massacred is unacceptable.  But allowing 10 to be murdered is.

  •  Please, y'all, tell me if I am way out (0+ / 0-)

    in left field.  While I think many of the proposed measures could do some good, the one thing I think would save the lives of most kids in accidental deaths would be to make it so every gun had to be registered and secured in a locked gun cabinet; not laying in your bedside table or on the closet shelf.  once registered, if any crime or accident is the result of what comes out of the pointy end of your gun, you are held as an accomplice or accessory to that manslaughter.  All gun transfers must be registered and background checked or you still are considered responsible.  
    So many of the child deaths are not some crazy guy on a rampage, but some kid being curious about Daddy' legal gun found lying around and loaded.  Even Adam Lanza would have had a harder time with his rampage if mommy had a locked gun cabinet and didn't give him the combination.  
    If you have a gun, lock it the fuck up!

    I was wise enough to never grow up while fooling most people into believing I had. - Margaret Mead

    by fayea on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 07:42:43 AM PST

    •  I have a petition up. It has 30 signatures. (0+ / 0-)

      Why?  Because gun control advocates are so critical of any gun control.  Just saying that because of all the criticism I have gotten from the dkos keep and bear nuts.  

      I think gun owners should keep their guns.  I mean keep them.  Not saying where or how, just saying when they don't what ever comes out of the pointy end, is their fault.

      Sign my White House Petition Enforce the KEEP in the Second Amendment We don't have a problem with gun control, we have a problem with gun owners controlling their guns.

      by 88kathy on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 07:47:39 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Unintential gun deaths for children 15 and under (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      noway2

      is negligible compared to other risks. In other words, the chance is basically 0% in this country that any given child will die from an unintentional shooting. Zero percent.

      There may be room for additional gun regulation that can significantly improve safety, but for some reason people are being willingly distracted by emotional knee-jerk responses/reactions rather than examining options that actually make people, including children, safer.

    •  There are carrots to go with the sticks, too. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      fayea

      For instance, my (blue) county offers free gun locks, if you ask.  

      Conservatives need to realize that their Silent Moral Majority is neither silent, nor moral, nor a majority.

      by nominalize on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 08:42:41 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  NRA's New Theme Song... (0+ / 0-)

    I believe this is the NRA's new theme song (apologies to Phineas and Pherb)

    FREEDOM ISN'T FREE: That's why we pay taxes. I Had A Thought

    by mole333 on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 07:43:53 AM PST

  •  Gotta start somewhere (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    litho

    The critics of Obama's proposals claim that they won't end the shootings when it's obvious the only way to do that is to confiscate all guns! Give some sensible measures a chance to work then try something else once you have some facts.

    They know there is no reasonable magic fix but by doing nothing but put more guns in civilian hands are encouraging the next gun massacre and the one after that....

    •  My complaint is that his proposals (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      happymisanthropy, noway2

      impinge on civil rights while not doing anything substantive towards the purported goals he is seeking.

      It is Kabuki theater/window dressing bullshit.

      But this latest "gun-control" push is clearly inflammatory so it provides a lot of distraction so more important issues can be safely ignored. Thus, I can see why the President is taking up the issue.

      For example, he should be pressing immigration reform -- that would split the GOP rather than galvanize them. And, it would possibly provide some substantial benefits for millions of people most of them poor.

      •  Pardon my French (5+ / 0-)

        but that is just fucking garbage.

        How in the bloody holy hell does it infringe on your rights to allow federal agencies to conduct scientific research on gun safety?

        How in the bloody holy hell does it infringe on your rights to conduct effectively the background checks that are already in the law, and that have passed constitutional muster?

        We could go down the entire list of 32 executive actions the president took last Tuesday and not find a single fucking one that infringed on a single constitutional right.  They are all goddamn common sense, they are all eminently reasonable, and they are all supported by a majority of the American people.

        You're just making shit up.  Take your garbage to Red State.  Get out your goddamn khakis and play militia with the racists on the weekends.  But don't pretend to be a progressive when you're not.

        When the union's inspiration /Through the workers' blood shall run /There can be no power greater /Anywhere beneath the sun /Solidarity Forever!

        by litho on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 08:28:28 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  He is not making hay out of improving (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          noway2

          the quality/accuracy for background checks (supported by most gun-rights groups) and enabling funding for research.

          Main areas where President Obama is asking Congress to pass legislation. They include: requiring background checks for all gun sales; reinstating a ban on high-capacity magazines; re-authorizing and beefing up the expired 1994 assault weapons ban; strengthening penalties for those who sell guns to criminals; and confirming his nominee for ATF director.
          abc

          The President, is primarily making hay by pushing the ban of "assault/military style" weapons; banning high-capacity magazines; universal background checks (e.g., gun registration and no private transfer.)

          Effective enforcement to limit private gun transfer will require civil rights to be infringed. See, Drug War.

          Also, it seems like the are many more effective ways to increase safety so maybe we should ask the President his own question:

          Ask [him] why an A-grade from the [anti-]gun lobby is more important than keeping kids safe in a first grade classroom.
          •  Take a hike (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Naranjadia, blueness

            your "right" to own assault weapons does not trump my right to live in a free society.

            Move to Somalia.  There are no effective limits on gun ownership there.

            When the union's inspiration /Through the workers' blood shall run /There can be no power greater /Anywhere beneath the sun /Solidarity Forever!

            by litho on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 09:06:18 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Did you ever consider that it is because of the (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Boris49

              fact that people have a right to own what you call "assault" rifles that you are able to live in a free society?

              •  Nope (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                blueness

                I hire an army to protect me from foreign enemies, because I know that marauding fellow citizens displaying their guns willy-nilly would be basically useless in a real military fight.

                It's the laws and the courts that keep me free.  That and a divided government, with three branches at the federal level, and a clearly delineated separation between state and federal powers.

                Here, try reading this book.  It explains it all.

                Get back to me when you understood the American system of government.

                When the union's inspiration /Through the workers' blood shall run /There can be no power greater /Anywhere beneath the sun /Solidarity Forever!

                by litho on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 10:37:08 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  I understand it. Apparently better than you. (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Boris49

                  If you understood how the govt works half as well as you claimed you would understand:
                  1) that the bans some states have started imposing using late night sessions and bypassed procedures are probably illegal
                  2) you would understand that actions being proposed by the President are causing states and other municipalities to threaten rebellion against the union.
                  3) you would understand that congress makes and passes the laws and congress hasn't even had a chance to do anything.
                  4) you would appreciate that the courts need to weigh in on the matters
                  5) and most importantly you would understand that just because you don't like something doesn't give you the right to dictate terms to someone else by fiat.  You have every right to petition your legislators and representatives.  Perhaps you may even convince enough of them to support your cause and even repeal the 2nd Amendment (I highly doubt it).  

                  •  No you don't get it (2+ / 1-)
                    Recommended by:
                    blueness, Sharon Wraight
                    Hidden by:
                    Boris49

                    The Founders specifically wrote the Constitution in such a way that the threat of military force by an armed citizenry would not be necessary in order to guarantee freedom.  Rather, the structure of the government itself would, by balancing power among the different institutions and interests in society, ensure that no single group would be able to accumulate enough power to threaten the freedoms of the others.

                    The Second Amendment was written specifically to ensure that the states would be able to defend themselves in the absence of a federal standing army.  It was not written, despite the beliefs of idiots like you, to guarantee an individual right to keep and bear arms.  In fact, no court ever prior to the twenty-first century held that the Second Amendment ensures such a right.

                    What has happened in this country over the past thirty years is a quiet coup, in which extremist rightwingers like yourself, who barely understand the concept of the separation of powers, and certainly do not share a belief in it, have coopted the federal judiciary to such a point that the very meaning of the Constitution has been distorted by rightwing activist judges.

                    The president has declared war on the extremists like you.  And he will win.  Because Americans of good conscience, who do understand the Constitution as it was actually written, stand behind him full force.

                    It took twenty dead babies in Connecticut, but we will not back down to the likes of you ever again.  You are an abomination on democracy.

                    When the union's inspiration /Through the workers' blood shall run /There can be no power greater /Anywhere beneath the sun /Solidarity Forever!

                    by litho on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 11:25:12 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Abomination on democracy? Too ad hominem. (0+ / 0-)

                      You have a point of view that is only partially supported by SCOTUS decisions.  

                      •  No shit. (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:
                        blueness

                        I reject Heller and McDonald, because in my view they undermine the very foundation of the balance of powers.

                        Introducing a unregulated and disorganized militia into the body politic upsets the balance between factions and institutions Madison theorized was necessary for the protection of the rights and freedoms of the minorities.  A minority with guns can simply impose themselves on minorities without guns, setting off an arms race among all factions within society and destroying the very fabric of democratic sociability.

                        So, yeah, Heller and McDonald are wrongly decided.  They violate the very spirit of the Constitution itself.  They are the result of an extremist rightwing coup at the heart of American democracy.

                        They are an abomination.  And anyone who agrees with them is an abomination as well.

                        Hit me again.

                        When the union's inspiration /Through the workers' blood shall run /There can be no power greater /Anywhere beneath the sun /Solidarity Forever!

                        by litho on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 11:34:44 AM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  It is the law, darling. (0+ / 0-)

                          Whether you agree with it or not, isn't the point.

                          If you don't like it, work to change it.

                          Until then, quit being an asshole.

                          •  That's exactly what I'm doing (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            blueness

                            working to change it.

                            By attacking the extremist forces that brought it into being in the first place.

                            The NRA is anti-democratic.  It is extremist.  It is dangerous.

                            And it needs to be smashed until it is no longer a danger.

                            Sugar-coating it doesn't cut it.

                            When the union's inspiration /Through the workers' blood shall run /There can be no power greater /Anywhere beneath the sun /Solidarity Forever!

                            by litho on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 11:38:51 AM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Massachusetts has a very low homicide rate. (0+ / 0-)

                            In the most recent statistics NO homicides were accomplished with a rifle of any kind.

                            I've heard today that Mass is proposing to reduce magazine size from 10 to 7 rounds.

                            Looks like your state is working the process.

                            I'm not a member of the NRA, but what you "and your ilk", as you refer to people in a pejorative manner, are doing is pushing moderates and independents to the right.

                            You are betting the progressive agenda on gun control and will put other things you'd like to see implemented on hold.

                            Take away a moderate's firearm and you expect them to vote with you on other issues?  NFW.

                            I hope you think it's worth it...in a state with a low homicide rate, it doesn't appear to be a worthy tradeoff.  But that's just my view.

                        •  Folks, we have a winner (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          Boris49
                          I reject Heller and McDonald, because in my view they undermine the very foundation of the balance of powers.
                          Under the rule of law that you claim to value, you don't have that option.
                    •  No, the founders wrote the consitition hoping that (0+ / 0-)

                      the people would never need to defend themselves in the absence of a standing federal army.  They also were wise enough to empower the people to be able to do so should that need ever arise.  

                      There is also the fact that the 2nd amendment includes the rights of self defense and this in turn is part of the right of self determination under the pursuit of happiness.  Don't believe me?  Then read some of the rulings from the Supreme Court and other circuit courts.

                      I find the shooting in Newtown as abhorrent as you.  The difference is I am not screaming to impinge upon everyone else in the victim's names.  That is not a proper way to honor or respect their memory.

                      •  The president has it exactly right (0+ / 0-)

                        Reasonable common sense measures to restrict access to guns is absolutely necessary.

                        People who object to the president's approach, like you, simply misunderstand the danger our society is under.

                        I'll go a step further and say people like you are actually responsible for the danger our society is under.

                        When the union's inspiration /Through the workers' blood shall run /There can be no power greater /Anywhere beneath the sun /Solidarity Forever!

                        by litho on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 11:42:17 AM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  I would suggest that the president either doesn't (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          noway2

                          understand small arms lethality or he's using Newtown to back away from promises he made in his campaign.

                          The most dangerous small arm out there is a shotgun.  It has always been the most dangerous firearm in the hands of a civilian.

                          Even Germany in WWI complained about the use of a shotgun by American forces.

                          I like the president, but what he knows about guns comes from limited experience.  Very limited.

                          •  Seeing as Obama comes from Illinois, Chicago (0+ / 0-)

                            in particular with both the most draconian gun laws in the nation and about the highest gun violence rate of any part of the nation, I think he is about the last person I would want to talk to about either gun rights or preventing gun violence.

                            A serious discussion is required.  Of that he is correct.  So far, there has been little to no discussion.  Just screaming, knee jerk reactions, and committee facades to create a smoke screen to pull a 20 year old policy proved to be failure.

                    •  Tks! Join us? (0+ / 0-)

                      Join us at RASA: Repeal or Amend the Second Amendment. (Repeal will not ban guns, just help regulate them.)

                      by Sharon Wraight on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 03:17:31 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

  •  I wish Pres Obama was spending political capital (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    happymisanthropy, noway2

    on comprehensive immigration reform - you know something that actually could pass.  

    He's getting bad information on this from somebody in pushing this.  I guess it's to be expected given his Chicago roots, given how they're facing so much gun violence there.  But these folks don't have a clue about rural America and this will not go anywhere in the House or Senate - so it's a pointless venture that is piddling away his post-election afterglow political capital.  

    "The world is made for people who aren't cursed with self awareness" -Annie Savoy (Bull Durham)

    by Jacoby Jonze on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 07:57:53 AM PST

    •  I for one am glad that he is taking on the NRA (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      slapshoe, blueness

      head on, because when he wins he will remove a blight from the body politic, one that has contributed tremendously to the mainstreaming of far-right wing extremist politics.

      He is in fact taking our country back.  We need to get behind him on this.

      When the union's inspiration /Through the workers' blood shall run /There can be no power greater /Anywhere beneath the sun /Solidarity Forever!

      by litho on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 08:29:41 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  The NRA will win. They already have (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        noway2, Boris49

        membership is surging since gun control has been back in the news. And am I sure their donations are up as well.

        The NRA will remain after the President is long gone and guns will remain as well.

        It is a fools game.

        How about working on getting more funding to improve enforcement of current laws. Tweak the existing laws that need tweaking. Heck the NRA would probably work with the President if he took that kind of approach.

        But, you see the President is not really interested in substantive solutions, he is interested in politically inflammatory action. And, based on your reactions to my comments he has picked the right subject matter to get the results he wants.

        •  The NRA (that is you) (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          blueness

          will lose.  The tide has shifted.  We are sick of the violence you and your ilk are foisting on our society.

          We will defeat you.  You are on notice.

          When the union's inspiration /Through the workers' blood shall run /There can be no power greater /Anywhere beneath the sun /Solidarity Forever!

          by litho on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 09:07:18 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  NRA would never work with the President... (0+ / 0-)

          nor are they interested in anything other than peddling more guns.  They will win because they're the gun manufacturer lobby disguised as a 2nd amendment lobby - but their greatest marketing tool is crime rates and they certainly don't want to actually do something that could stem the flow of guns to the streets because they they lose the great marketing tool that is the nightly news reporting on the latest gun crime of the day in communities across America.  

          "The world is made for people who aren't cursed with self awareness" -Annie Savoy (Bull Durham)

          by Jacoby Jonze on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 03:28:45 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  One person's common sense is anothers tomfoolery (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    happymisanthropy

    I own guns and have a permit to carry them in public.  I take my 2A rights as serious as anyone else.  I am fine with and actually support many of the proposals by the Obama administration.  I am all for background checks on sales, though I think the 40% claim is bogus, I am all for better mental health system, an improved NICS, better funding for the BATFE, going after trafficking.  I support having a permit system to buy including ammunition, but I don't believe in registering guns.  

    What is an absolute, hands down, unequivocal show stopper for me are the gun and magazine bans.  As far as the bans go, I see a tricky words referring to them as "military style."  What exactly does "military style" mean?  To most who understand guns, this means fully automatic which is already prohibited without very special licensing.  The AR15 and other civilian rifles don't meet this criterion yet I have no illusions that this is what is being targeted.

    Magazine capacity limits are also a non starter.  The simple fact of the matter is that they will only limit the good guys not the criminal.  Why in the hell would I ever want to support that.  No, I don't believe it would have made one damn bit of difference in the Newtown case, nor do I think it will ever stop someone who wants to kill a bunch of people if for no other reason than one doesn't need guns to do that.

    As long as these fucking bans are part of the package, I will not support it.  Instead, I will continue to actively campaign against it.  Those who want additional laws and think they will do any good, you have a choice.  Keep pushing bans and you will probably get nothing, or focus on things that might actually make a difference and maybe you will find allies in unexpected places.

    •  Still here, huh? LOL! You're gonna lose. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      DefendOurConstitution, blueness

      Maybe you should go to the range and practice up with that .357 or .38.

    •  Yeah, I got no respect for you (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      DefendOurConstitution, blueness

      because there is no way a sane and reasonable person needs high capacity clips, and there is no way a sane and reasonable person needs an assault rifle.

      We write the bans so they're effective and they protect our cities and our families.  If we get the language wrong the first time, we fix it.

      But first, we get those weapons and their capacity for high rates of fire off the streets.

      Now.

      Twenty dead babies in Connecticut demand it.

      When the union's inspiration /Through the workers' blood shall run /There can be no power greater /Anywhere beneath the sun /Solidarity Forever!

      by litho on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 08:31:44 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  What exactly does "military style" mean? (0+ / 0-)

      It means what we decide it means, of course.  Like with any other law.  

      This term might be defined so as to include a lot of types of instruments of death, or maybe not so many (for instance, semi-automatic handguns began as military weapons).  My guess is, the more that pro-gun advocates try to stop the political action rather than avoid participating in it, the broader the definition is going to wind up being.  

      Conservatives need to realize that their Silent Moral Majority is neither silent, nor moral, nor a majority.

      by nominalize on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 08:46:41 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  what about the ATF (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    noway2

    and empowering them to go after illegal guns and gun sales? I know adding a head of the ATF was mentioned. But what about removing all the barriers Congress put in their way? Getting illegal guns off the streets would be a meaningful way to prevent daily gun-related crime. I am not clear if this is part of the proposal.

  •  Make this statement would be more powerful (3+ / 0-)

    Many assault rifles, when combined with high-capacity magazines, have one purpose and one purpose only: to fire as many bullets as possible as quickly as possible AT HUMAN BEINGS.

    "Now watch what you say or they'll be calling you a radical, a liberal, a fanatical criminal" -- Logical Song -- Rick Davies & Roger Hodgson

    by Over50Lib on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 08:13:17 AM PST

    •  To fire as many bullets as possible as quickly as (0+ / 0-)

      possible AT HUMAN BEINGS.  The times when a civilian would have to do this are admittedly very rare.  Yet they do exist.  I suppose the rioters in LA had every right to take everything from thestore owners including their lives.  I suppose that home invader had every right to do as he wanted with the 15 year old kid after breaking into his home.

      In all the race for common sense reform, it would appear that common sense got thrown out the window.

      •  Regaedless of how well armed you are (0+ / 0-)

        unless you carry your assault rifle on your person 24/7 while you are at home or at your store, the home invader and/or angry riotous mob will will  get the drop on you before you could off a single shot.  The word assault is not a defensive adjective it is offensive (in any context)

        "Now watch what you say or they'll be calling you a radical, a liberal, a fanatical criminal" -- Logical Song -- Rick Davies & Roger Hodgson

        by Over50Lib on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 12:49:07 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Da-a-amn! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kaminpdx, blueness

    A president taking gun control seriously, and taking on the NRA directly!

    Makes me glad I voted for him...

    When the union's inspiration /Through the workers' blood shall run /There can be no power greater /Anywhere beneath the sun /Solidarity Forever!

    by litho on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 08:19:38 AM PST

  •  the Kenyan Muslim Socialist is going to take (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DefendOurConstitution, blueness

    my guns and my freedom.

    FEMA camps are just around the corner !

    How can anyone possibly defend themselves with a 10 round clip ?

    big badda boom : GRB 090423

    by squarewheel on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 08:30:34 AM PST

  •  Remember folks we've got to have his back (2+ / 0-)

    Not just on guns, but all the tiers of his second term: immigration reform, energy, High ed, withdrawing from Afghanistan, etc. He's sticking his neck out, moving away from his conciliatory approach, we've got to be ready to fight.

  •  How many more Americans must we sacrifice at (0+ / 0-)

    the altar of the gun Cult (created by the NRA and the gun manufacturers) before we take back our Government and pass some sensible national regulations like FULL background checks on EVERY firearm sale/transfer, licensing and registration?

    It's going to be a very tough fight, but the fact that our President is standing on the side of the people gives me hope.  (No, defending an unregulated firearm policy is not equal to defending anyone's rights, just cultists doing the NRA bidding; "tontos útiles" as my late father called them.)

    Then they came for me - and by that time there was nobody left to speak up.

    by DefendOurConstitution on Sat Jan 19, 2013 at 11:01:02 AM PST

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