Evidently ignorant – or dismissive – of the meaning of “shall not be infringed” the government of Oregon Saturday put into effect a new rights-snatching statute that compels gun-owners to store firearms in safes or “safe rooms,” place trigger locks on them, and NOT take them to certain public places.
And the statute will, of course, be enforced by armed cops – paid by the taxpayers whose rights are being crushed.
The new statute was sponsored entirely by Democrats, and as Mike Benner reports for Oregon TV KGW8:
Senate Bill 554 requires Oregonians to keep guns secured with a trigger or cable lock, in locked container or in a gun room except in specific circumstances. It also allows places like the state capitol, airports, schools and universities to prohibit firearms in buildings.
Because, again, the explicit prohibition of the Second Amendment – “the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed” doesn’t mean anything to these Oregon politicians.
They either believe they can flout that prohibition, or they delude and debase themselves into the fantasy that compelling people to lock up their arms – to impede or block access to their self-defense devices – is NOT an infringement on their right to keep and BEAR arms.
Of course, KGW8’s Benner does not offer any magical information on how a state infringement on the right to keep and bear arms is not an infringement. Instead, he discusses crime rates, and recent Portland shootings – all of which already are prohibited by statutes that didn’t stop the criminally minded – and avoids the concrete fact that when more peacefully-minded people in a region own firearms, criminally minded people change their behavior and leave them alone, reducing rates of violent crime.
How curious, that in a glowing piece on the infringement of a natural right, a reporter should avoid any discussion of that right, avoid the fact that prohibition doesn’t work (why can’t these people look at the US prohibition of alcohol, or the current state of gun-grabbing Chicago, which just saw eight killed and 54 wounded in a single weekend?), or the fact that these kinds of statutes commanding how people will live in their own homes end up facilitating murder?
Gun Owners of America’s Erich Pratt offers one such tragic and enraging story, from Merced, California:
On the morning of August 23, 2000, Jonathon David Bruce was high on drugs. He slipped inside a home when the parents were away and began attacking the children inside.
Please be prepared; this is a terrible crime.
Armed only with a pitchfork, and without a stitch of clothing on his body, Bruce proceeded to chase the children through the house — stabbing them repeatedly.
The oldest of the children, Jessica Carpenter (14), was babysitting at the time. Having been trained by her father, Jessica knew how to use a firearm. There was just one problem: the household gun was locked up in compliance with California state law.
Because of California’s “lock up your safety” law, Jessica had few options. She could not call 911 because the intruder had cut the phone lines to the house. She could not protect herself, for state officials had effectively removed that possibility. Her only option was to flee the house and leave her siblings behind.
Thankfully, Mr. Bruce’s murderous rampage was finally cut short when police officers arrived at the house. They shot and killed Bruce, but not before two children had already been murdered.
Unbelievable. But true. And it reminds us to remember the important adage that, when seconds count, police are just minutes away.
Here is a thought experiment the politicians behind Oregon Senate Bill 554 can try.
As I have for students and adults alike, I suggest each politician imagine being in a paint-ball game. The politician can win $1,000 if he or she hits ten people in a house, but will lose $10,000 if hit by anyone inside using a paintball gun. The politician faces three houses, each with twenty people hiding inside. In House One, no one has a paintball gun. In House Two, some people have them. In House Three, everyone has a paintball gun.
Which house would you choose, eh, politician?
Of course, these practical considerations are beside the deeper moral point, which is that human beings are granted inherent rights by God. Politicians who write statutes telling people they MUST lock-up their guns and that people can’t bring firearms onto the grounds of places that get their tax cash? Those politicians are engaging in indirect threats of violence, period. They are saying to the underlings that armed agents of the state will threaten them for non-compliance, and that those armed agents of the state can engage in gun violence if the innocent, peaceful people do not comply with the edicts.
We’ve seen this kind of thing before in very dark places, during the rule of very dark regimes.
Perhaps the politicians who applaud this kind of threat might want to think twice before they make claims that they want to “reduce gun violence,” by threatening state-sponsored gun violence against innocents.