You might have heard from the talking heads that the gun rights movement is in a hole. You probably purchased a gun (or maybe two) in the past week, bought a few 30 round magazines for your rifle, and paid too much for ammunition. Maybe you decided to build that AR you never got around to finishing. More power to you. I’ll be watching for all this stuff on the OFCC for sale/trade/wanted forum in the spring (and I’m gonna low-ball you on the price). But that’s not the point. We are not staring another Clinton gun ban in the face. In fact, we are in a position to push for the repeal of the Gun Free School Zone Act, which is just another moronic, feel-good law that accomplishes nothing. I am optimistic about what we can accomplish in the coming year. These are the reasons why I believe that we have a real opportunity to continue our progress in this state and on the federal level:
- We have accomplished more to expand gun rights in the last several years than in the several decades preceding. We’re not tricky; we didn’t pull the wool over anyone’s eyes. We changed minds. We convinced politicians from all over the state and all over the political spectrum that we’re right about this stuff. Many of these politicians are not born and bred gun nuts, they have been converted (exhibit A: Governor John Kasich, Exhibit B: Attorney General Mike DeWine). They have the courage to listen to reason, examine facts, and make decisions that are in the best interest of their constituents. They represent millions of gun owners and non gun owners who believe in abiding by the state and national constitutions in their entirety. These politicians understand that their chances of winning election and re-election are measurably improved by being on the winning side of the gun argument. And boy, have we been winning.
- We have an incredible opportunity to educate the non gun owning public and help expand the base of voters who support firearm freedoms. It is clear that many people don’t know what an ‘assault weapon’ is (nor do I, I thought that ‘assault’ was a verb), or that an ammunition feeding device is called a magazine, because all that they know about guns comes from popular media. These are not opponents; rather, they are potential allies. The recent attention to guns increases their curiosity, and just a few words from a knowledgeable gun owner can make the difference. The Ar-15 is the most popular rifle in America. In fact, it might be the most popular rifle in the world among those who have a choice. They are not evil, and reasonable people are capable of understanding that.
- The people who write opinion pieces and come on talk shows to bash guns and gun owners are the same people who have always hated us and what we stand for. They are appearing more frequently because, unlike the NRA, unlike us, they didn’t see a tragedy in Connecticut, they saw an opportunity. They were so anxious to capitalize on that horrific event they didn’t even wait for the facts to be known. Did you know that Toby Hoover and the few stragglers she still manages to attract staged a demonstration at the White House THE SAME DAY as the shooting? Within hours. These folks have no shame, and they have no honor. They are shouting louder than before, and the media is looking for the next fight to boost their ratings. Piers Morgan, Bloomberg and all the rest of them can kiss my ass. People who support the right to keep and bear arms are a growing majority and I do not see that changing.
- Speaking of numbers, we have them, and they don’t. Go to the Ohio Coalition Against Gun Violence Web Site. Go to the Brady Bunch web site. Then look at all the people on OFCC’s discussion boards, and if you think that’s active, look at AR15.com’s forum and the 14,000 people actively reading and posting yesterday alone. I’ll bet the same is true for all the manufacturer-specific forums like GlockTalk (I’m pretty sure that’s a forum focused on either guns or Tupperware). There are at least 8 MILLION concealed carry licensees in this country, and four states don’t even require them. On top of that that I know at least five people that share my views on gun issues, but have not yet pursued a concealed carry license. If each licensee can say the same, that’s 40 Million strong supporters. Maybe they should start calling some Members of Congress. Those phone lines might be more jammed than the NICS lines.
Remember Heller. Remember McDonald. Go back and read them, I did. It helps to remember why we do what we do. The purpose of the second amendment is to codify a right that people have had since creation: the right to defend ourselves and our families. These anti-gun jack wagons are willing to pursue their agenda at the cost of innocent lives, and I’m not standing for it. If they want a fight, they’ve got one. Unlike them, we don’t pop up at opportune times and go back into hiding just as quickly; we’ve been at this a long time. We are not in damage control mode. To the contrary, we are in a position to essentially destroy what little credibility the gun-banners have remaining.