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Guns and Crime

What if President Obama had recommended a bump stock ban?

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What if President Obama had recommended a bump stock ban

It’s the tale of two tribes. On one hand, you have the Obama-loving leftists and Democrats who want to curtail our 2nd Amendment right. On the other side, you have the gun-toting, Trump-loving conservatives and Republicans who understand any limits placed on the 2nd Amendment will lead us down the road towards confiscations.

But this tale has a weird twist happening right now. After consulting the tea leaves and invoking his past when he supported every form of gun control legislation under the sun, President Trump is endorsing a ban on bump stocks, the attachment used in the Mandalay Bay massacre in Las Vegas just over a year ago. The attachments allow for single trigger-pull extended fire, giving a semi-automatic rifle some of the attributes of an automatic rifle. It doesn’t “convert” a semi-automatic rifle as many proponents of the legislation suggest. It mimics the effects by allowing the shooter to hold the bump stock trigger down while the gun’s trigger is depressed and released by the bump stock itself.

The attachment, used properly, allows for faster firing while reducing trigger finger fatigue. It also reduces accuracy.

This “common sense gun safety” ban is politically expedient for anyone not running on a pro-2nd Amendment platform. The leftward lurch of Democrats has allowed many Republicans, including the President and some on Capitol Hill, to buy into the “common sense” argument and still retain their 2nd Amendment edge on the competition.

Nevertheless, it’s a dangerous first domino to start tipping in these precarious times. It sets the precedent that if a firearm or accessory can be deemed too dangerous to the general public, it can be banned. Supporting a bump stock ban opens the door for further regulations against “dangerous” accessories like thumbhole stocks, suppressors, certain types of scopes, and forward grips. It also lends itself to the fodder that “assault weapons” should be banned and include a wider range of firearms.

Give them an inch and they’ll take a mile.

The debate over bump stocks has highlighted a bigger problem in our political system. Extreme tribalism has infected both sides of the aisle, causing people to adamantly embrace or oppose a person, in this case President Trump, to the point that their own ideologies shift to match the party-line narrative.

You don’t see many Republicans speaking out against the proposed ban for one reason only: President Trump supports it. You don’t see many Democrats praising the ban that they’ve been hoping to get for one reason only: President Trump supports it. Americans are so fiercely supportive of or opposed to the President that they’re willing to bend their own ideologies and remain silent on such a controversial issue.

If President Obama had pushed for the exact same bump stock ban, every Republican west of the Atlantic Ocean would be up in arms, many of them literally. Every Democrat would be hailing it as the first step to a safer America. Instead, we have crickets.

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Entertainment and Sports

As Jussie Smollett story evolves, let’s not give it the Covington Catholic School treatment

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As Jussie Smollett story evolves lets not give it the Covington Catholic School treatment

When a juicy story hits social media, the instant reaction is to run with it and all the implications. That’s the nature of our on-demand, always-on, real-time media world. The only thing faster than hot takes from the first hint of a story are the assumptions made by both sides regardless of the details.

Such is the case with Jussie Smollett, the actor who was allegedly attacked by MAGA-loving bigots. Smollett, a gay man of color, was allegedly targeted on the streets of Chicago, but now reports are coming in that it may have been an elaborate hoax designed to help him save his job on the cast of Empire.

But so far, police have only confirmed that Smollett is still being treated as a victim. Yes, there were two persons of interest questioned by police. Yes, Smollett skipped a voluntary interview with police this morning. Yes, the story was strange from the start and this new narrative seems to match much better regardless of which side of the political or cultural aisle you’re on.

And yet, nothing has been confirmed.


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It’s incumbent on us, whether journalists or simply social media users, to wait for the facts before jumping to conclusions. It works in both directions.

Was it all a hoax? Possibly. Some who are looking at he evidence today and the report released by local Chicago news may come to the conclusion that a hoax was likely. But let’s not assume until the truth is revealed by officials.

 


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Democrats

Democrats push background check bill in the House

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Democrats push background check bill in the House

As social media buzzes about the one-year anniversary of the Parkland shooting, Democrats hope to put their latest iteration of gun control on the floor and onto the Senate. Called a “bipartisan” attempt to initiate more background checks on firearm purchases and sales, many conservatives on Capitol Hill are speaking out against it.

The House Judiciary Committee advanced the bill yesterday.

My Take

Gun control bills, of which this is merely the first to be pushed by the current iteration of Democrats, usually have two things in common. First, they don’t address the problem they’re allegedly trying to solve; neither the Parkland shooting nor any mass shooting in the 21st century would have been prevented had this bill been in place. Second, they are a stepping stone through which leftists will attempt to initiate more draconian laws that eat away at our 2nd Amendment right to bear arms.

As with the abortion issue, the gun control issue is one in which “common sense” is used to push harsher laws down the line.

It should be strange to cognizant Americans that Democrats continue to push laws that make it easier to kill preborn babies while making it harder for innocent people to defend themselves with firearms. Are you seeing a trend in their mentality?

 


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Guns and Crime

Freedom-lovers, keep an eye on AG William Barr

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Freedom-lovers keep an eye on AG William Barr

Today, William Barr is likely to be confirmed to be the next Attorney General. While he’s a qualified leader to take the reins over the Justice Department and a strong patriot, there are concerns that we must remember as he joins the Trump administration.

First and foremost, Barr’s record on the 4th Amendment is abysmal.

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

One would hope the top law enforcer in the nation would be an ardent defender of the 4th Amendment, but Barr has demonstrated not only a willingness to circumvent it at times but has also expressed annoyance that it prevents law enforcement from doing its job, particularly as it pertains to stopping terrorism. He’s also a fan of the Patriot Act, though if anything it didn’t go far enough.

Sadly, only a tiny handful of Republicans in DC seem to be concerned.

The tribalism that has infected the country and plagued groups on both sides of the political aisle has struck once again. There would be plenty of objections from conservatives if Barr had been nominated by President Obama or another Democrat, but since he’s a Trump nominee it appears he’s going to fly through with no GOP Senators objecting other than Rand Paul.

It’s a shame that the President decided to go with Barr. It’s likely he did so based on Barr’s objections to Robert Mueller’s probe into Russian hacking of the election, but otherwise Barr’s record is one that doesn’t seem very conducive to freedom. We’ll be keeping a close eye on him.

 


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