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Consistency matters: Why we shouldn’t create a second class

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Many Republicans are caving into leftist pressure in regards to the Second Amendment. Among the popular grounds from which Republicans are caving is raising the gun buying age to 21. Both Trump and Rick Scott are among the cavers. The belief behind raising the minimum age to 21 is centered on the premise that 18 years-olds cannot think clearly. The biggest fact cited to support this is the whole thing about the brain not being fully developed until 25.

Inconsistencies Rampant

The age of consent varies state to state as does a drivers license. The age to vote is 18. The age to buy cigarettes is also 18 except for a few states that raised the age to 19, and California is 21. Nonetheless one can enter into a contract at 18, watch porn at 18 (a meaningless age barrier with the internet), and get married at 18. Getting married is probably the most adult thing an 18 year old can do. A person can enlist in the military at 18 and men must register for the draft at said age. At 21 you can purchase alcohol, marijuana, and handguns. There is no consistency in our country when it comes to the rights of young adults. The government legislates them as they see fit.

Brain Development

If the premise for alcohol and firearms is the development of the human brain, then the age should be mid-twenties. If brain development is what qualifies a person to make responsible cognitive decisions, why are the most meaningful decisions a person can make, the earliest rights a person receives? Voting, marriage, and military service are three of the most meaningful choices a person can make. I agree that voting isn’t as meaningful, but in our political system, voting is a trusted right to citizens. Alcohol and marijuana are the most trivial of these and are restricted to 21. Handguns are restricted to 21.

Perhaps the person with this argument would specify a level of danger as a premise for denying the “underdeveloped” human rights. Again we see a problem here. Alcoholism is dangerous but not inherent. Small amounts can be beneficial, but alcohol is far safer than cigarettes which you can purchase three years earlier in life. Marijuana, by every metric, is safer than cigarettes and alcohol by most. Military service has the risk of death. Are eighteen-year-olds developed enough for the military? Because how can they be if they aren’t developed enough for the rifles they will be assigned? This argument falls apart at the inconsistencies. Perhaps one would argue that the inconsistencies are flaws in the system that were not implemented using “brain development”, which isn’t true in many of these.

Young adults aren’t developed enough to purchase a firearm but we’ll let them, and push them to, go into debt to attend glorified summer camps to maybe achieve a certificate that says you are somewhat qualified for a job.

Brain Deterioration

If we gain rights due to brain development, the logical flow follows that we should then lose rights as our brains deteriorate. The premise of using brain development follows that cognitive optimization is essential to being trusted and endowed, by the state, certain inalienable rights. As we humans age, our brains shrink. Our memory and quickness become fade. And these are mild compared to degenerative diseases out there. If brain development is the standard than many old people should lose their “majority” status and accompanying rights. The old politician seeing this argument would then respond that “brain development is tied to mature decision making.” But do our young people act irrationally due to biology or culture? I counter with two examples:

Example 1: Chicago

Chicago’s crime should come as a shock to no one. It’s an overused talking point. Chicago not only reaps an atrocious body count but much of the of crime committed is by young offenders. 2011 data shows that 53% of homicide offenders were between the ages of 17-25. The “fully developed 26-35 year olds were 26% of the convicted. What’s unique is that Chicago is above average when it comes to young people committing murder. But it’s not just offenders, it’s also the victims who are young. Compared to other cities, Chicago is an outlier for youth violence. Not being able to trust youth with a gun would reasonably have far more to do with underlying cultural issues instead of brain development. But I’m sure blaming Indiana will solve all of Chicago’s problems… Point being, unless we are to assume that minorities are inferior, which I don’t, I remain steadfast in contending that the poor decision making of America’s troubled youth is far more correlated to cultural issues (fatherless homes, political corruption, big government etc.) than an underdeveloped brain.

Example 2: Alcohol

I raise the argument that denying rights to young adults is bad for the general welfare of our population. Restrictions upon young adults have only worsened our culture and the health of young adults. Pushing the age off alcohol to 21 has rendered, decades later, rampant alcoholism among young people. According to Addiction Resource Approximately 20% of college students meet the medical criteria for having an Alcohol Use Disorder, which includes alcohol abuse and alcohol dependence. Not all college students who binge drink end up becoming alcoholics, but they are only a step or two away from developing alcoholism, also known as alcohol dependence. Since like to do comparisons with Australia and Switzerland with guns, how are all these other countries with alcohol? Turns out the countries with the most alcoholics are former communist states, uncorrelated with the legal age, of which the US is among the highest. It’s not a faulty analogy to point out that the alcohol at 21 age discrimination has yielded no empirical benefits (reduced drunk driving deaths have many other factors) while enabling a youth worship of the bottle. Good job politicians…

Prolonged Adolescence

Prolonged adolescence is one of the biggest threats to our culture and perhaps our economy. Adolescence was largely a 20th-century invention, whereby society created a period between childhood and adulthood. Teenagers always existed but at what point should adults be treated as, and act like adults? They graduate high school, go to college while not working except when on break. This is a general state of many college students, with the addition of underage drinking. What enables our youth to be so lackadaisical? Young people aren’t treated like adults, therefore do not act like them. We don’t hold young people to higher standards because we can’t trust them. So they carry on adolescence. The partial blame goes to the politicians who regulated the ages between 18-21, the notorious years for prolonged adolescence.

Age of Majority

When rights are protected at the age of majority, those at the arbitrary age selected are entitled to equal protection as those well above the arbitrary protections. This is a consistent platform for all rights to be protected. This is the most logically defensible solution. The age of majority is not only fair, it is beneficial to our culture as a whole.

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2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. Don McCullen

    March 1, 2018 at 11:14 pm

    Awesome piece Ray!!! Well said.

  2. ed

    March 2, 2018 at 1:22 am

    Well said Ray !

    Though I’m against Trump’s “National Military Parade” idea for a number of issues, if he DOES succeed in squandering the time & money of the military in such a useless exercise, I hope we get to see the soldiers marching down the street carrying broomsticks instead of rifles and frequent explanations by the press narrators is that the broomsticks are the Military replacement for the rifles that the soldiers are too young and not trusted by their Commander-in-Chief to carry because those carrying broomsticks are under 21 and will therefore be shouting “bang bang” at their foes.

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Culture and Religion

Snatching Defeat from the jaws of Victory: ‘Writing out’ Most Guns with the Bump-Stock ban.

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Bump Stock

The latest Liberty grabber wave has crested, but Trump is about to give them a tremendous victory over the 2nd amendment.

Now that the Sturm und Drang of the March for gun confiscation has ‘died down’ it has become evident that, much like previous movements of the past, it came to nought aside from some localised suppressions of Liberty. The problem is there a vestige of this assault of freedom that is still rearing it’s ugly head, that of the infamous ban on so-called “Bump-Stocks”.

Those who are rightly concerned about this assault on Liberty can still inscribe their opposition with the Moonshine, Cigarettes and Fire-sticks bureaucracy [Better known as the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms – BATF]  pushing through a new ‘law’ that all by himself, Trump has taken to “Writing Out”.  The deadline is June 27, 2018 11:59 PM ET for everyone to post their opposition to this ‘Law’.

First they came for the Bump-Stocks.

For those who may not care about someone else’s concerns over freedom, just be mindful of a reprise of Martin Niemöller Poem starting with the line: “First they came for the Bump-Stocks, and I didn’t object – For I didn’t care about Bump-Stocks…. Soon enough, they get around to coming after the firearms everyone else cares about, and eventually that will be hunting rifles or shotguns. If you chose to remain silent those guns will be “written out” as well.

But don’t just take our word for it, listen to what the Liberty grabbers have stated in bragging about the subject:

Delaney Tarr [March for Our Lives]

When they give us that inch, that bump stock ban, we will take a mile.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D., Calif.):

Upon being asked if the bill was a slippery slope toward further gun restrictions, she said, “So what? … I certainly hope so.”

Apparently we’re not supposed to notice when the Liberty grabber Left broadcasts their intentions to the world. We’re supposed to let them get a foot in the door of a pretext for further bans before objecting.

Giving up the question.

David Deming over on the American thinker, Made the very important point that sacrificing one more time to the Liberty grabbers of what seems to be nothing is in essence:

If we agree to ban bump stocks because they facilitate rapid firing, we have given up the question. We have agreed in principle that any dangerous gun can be banned and confiscated by an arbitrary executive order. All guns are capable of rapid fire, and all guns are inherently dangerous. Pump-action shotguns can be rapidly fired and reloaded. Jerry Miculek can fire five shots from a double-action revolver in 0.57 seconds. High-capacity magazines most certainly facilitate rapid fire, so they also will have to go. A writer who wants to ban all “private individual ownership of firearms” recently argued that “even bolt-action rifles can still fire surprisingly fast in skilled hands.” He’s right. All magazine-fed guns will be outlawed.

Automatic redefinition.

In point of fact, the ATF previously ruled that Bump-Stocks [and presumably other ways of ‘bump-firing a gun – Fast fingers, Rubber bands and Belt-loops] don’t actually convert ordinary semi-automatic firearms to a “Machine gun” because the trigger has to be pulled for every shot. Now with the President’s authorising this linguistic legerdemain, this definition codified in the law has been blurred to the point that any gun that can be ‘Bump-fired’ could also be banned. However, they can’t very well ban fingers, belt-loops or rubber bands, so they will just ban each and every gun that can fire too fast.

Just ‘Write-out’ this legal requirement and Voila! Any gun that can be fired too fast for the sensibilities of the Liberty grabbers can be thought of as a “Machine Gun” and banned instantly – converting most of the 120 Million gun owners into instant felons. With a bit of training,  most guns can be fired faster, so in essence, letting them change this legal definition could have them ban just about every gun in existence.

The Takeaway.

One might not care about the fate of thousands of inert pieces of plastic or what happens to those who have them. One might not care if someone won’t be able to bump-fire a weapon in this particular way. But we on the Pro-Liberty Right will rue the day that we let this go through in exchange for nothing.

If we let the powers that be arbitrarily proclaim that some guns with these pieces of inert plastic are “Machine Guns’, the day will soon dawn when ALL guns are dishonestly ‘written out’ as the same. It will then just be a slippery slope to everyone having to undergo a background check, registration and of course – TAXES – on guns that we already own. Followed by the inevitable confiscation of those guns.

Those who remain silent now will only have themselves to blame when this happens – so now is the time to stop this dead in it’s tracks. The comment window is only open for a few more days [Jun 27, 2018 11:59 PM ET], make the best of it.

 

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Foreign Affairs

Trump’s trade war faces resistance from GOP, but it probably won’t matter

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While the government-contrived immigration “crisis” at the border involving forced family separations has captured the headlines—effectively giving Trump and the GOP the cover they need to save DACA and create a pathway to citizenship for millions of illegal aliens—Trump’s trade war was the topic of the day during hearings with the Senate Finance Committee yesterday.

Following recent announcements of retaliatory tariffs being leveled against the US by Canada, China, Mexico, and the EU, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross appeared before the committee to defend what the committee referred to as Trump’s “knee-jerk impulses” with his trade policies.

Senators from both parties blasted Ross over Trump’s steel and aluminum tariffs—which Ross once defended as “no big deal” because any impact they might have on consumer prices would be “trivial”—following recent economic data indicating that tariffs were indeed having a negative impact on the US economy.

After pointing out that tariffs were responsible for raising prices by 20 percent or more for certain US manufacturers, Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch questioned the administration’s claim that Trump’s trade war was a matter of national security.

“These tariffs do not support US national security; instead, they harm American manufacturers, damage our economy, hurt American consumers, and disrupt our relationship with our long-term allies, while giving China a free pass.”

As regular readers of the Strident Conservative already know, Trump has been particularly soft on China after receiving favorable treatment for his and Ivanka’s business interests in China from the Chinese government.

Sen. Pat Toomey (R-PA), who attempted to get a law passed that would return the power to levy tariffs back to Congress as the Constitution requires—it was shot down by Mitch McConnell—also pointed out that Trump’s trade war has nothing to do with national security.

“I wish we would stop invoking national security because that’s not what this is about. This is about economic nationalism.”

“We’re picking winners and losers.”

Hmm… picking winners and losers. Isn’t that something Obama did?

Despite Trump’s misguided optimism, it’s important to remember that there are always casualties in war—even in a trade war—and he is personally responsible for them because he will have caused them.

While news that there are Republicans willing to take a stand against Trump’s disastrous trade policies should be something to cheer, the GOP has become the party of Trump where loyalty and undying devotion to the NY liberal has replaced conservative values. It was just yesterday that I wrote about Sen. Dean Heller’s conversion to Trump conservatism and how as a Trump loyalist, he would be giving Trump “a wide berth” concerning tariffs.

With the GOP adopting a Trump loyalty test when it comes to enacting policy and running elections, it’s likely that we’ll see more Republicans giving Trump a wide berth on tariffs and pretty much everything else Trump wants.

Originally posted on The Strident Conservative.

 


David Leach is the owner of The Strident Conservative. His daily radio commentary is distributed by the Salem Radio Network and is heard on stations across America.

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Opinions

Conservative Picks for the Colorado Primary

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There isn’t too much action in the Colorado Primary, but the race to watch seems to be out of District 5. Colorado is a state that can embrace the grassroots. Doug Lamborn seems to have lost touch with the grassroots due to his struggle at getting on the ballot. As a result of temporarily not being on the ballot, he finds himself in a contested field and is a more vulnerable incumbent. If Lamborn’s reputation can’t recover, Darryl Glenn is poised to capitalize.

Best Pick: Darryl Glenn
Worst Pick: Doug Lamborn
Best Race: District 4
Worst Race: District 3, District 6

District 1

Casper Stockham is the only Republican in this race.

District 2

Peter Yu is the only Republican in this race.

District 3

Scott Tipton is an incumbent RINO. He is unchallenged.

District 4

Ken Buck is Colorado’s most Conservative Congressman. He is unchallenged.

District 5

The first impression from this race is that incumbent Doug Lamborn badmouthed Trump. But rather, Lamborn is in a fight because he had some ballot issues because he was using nonresident signatures or something like that. He survived that court battle but that is only the first battle for in this swamp creature’s quest to stay on top. Looking at his record, he was more Conservative under Obama.

His most serious challenger is Darryl Glenn. Glenn is a candidate with a strong grasp on federalism and separation of powers. He is also running as a fiscal hawk who seems as though he would align with the Freedom Caucus on spending issues. It’ll be interesting to see if Glenn’s Youtube campaign is matched by his ground game. If so, he just might have this.

Conservative Pick: Darryl Glenn

District 6

Mike Coffman is an unchallenged RINO.

District 7

Mark Barrington is the only Republican in this race.

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