“Paradox” is often a word that appears in this column; it’s a fancy way of saying truth embodies its own opposite—in other words, there are exceptions to our most cherished beliefs, our proudest achievements, to every law, rule and principle, to mathematical models and even divine intervention, as there is one historically reported exception to the irreversible finality of death.
But in the national debate about guns and death, the National Rifle Association (NRA) makes no exceptions. They claim truth without paradox. Their leadership believes and expresses confidence the Second Amendment doesn’t provide for any exceptions. Since no law can stop the use of guns for murder, there should be no laws. Since, in their judgment, old laws were ineffective, there is no need for new laws. Since laws will have loopholes and workarounds, what’s the point? Their logic of default hides a fatal flaw found in the paradox of their absolutes.
That paradox is found not in their faith in the gun but in the law. They think the Second Amendment is set in stone. It’s not. As with all bad law, it can be repealed. In fact, I will raise the ante and hereby call for its repeal. It wouldn’t be the first amendment to be repealed.
Whether successful or not, it opens another political front and will force the NRA to divide its energy and resources. The call for repeal mimics the successful strategy of going after policy issues by swinging for the home run—by going after the law which is the context for the policy. The Second Amendment threatens my safety. I have been a victim of robbery at gun point. The right to bear arms has resulted in 1500+ gun connected deaths since the Newtown incident. This “cherished” ideal is tarnished. I call for the Second Amendment’s repeal.
So the idea of repeal takes a page from the politics of our times and uses a power wedge to loosen up the rabid grip the NRA has on the national consciousness, where it gets to define the terms of the debate, the President’s common sense views not withstanding. Let’s bypass their command post and check points and flank the organization and boldly go after the ultimate prize: let’s target repeal of the Second Amendment. No one tinkers around the edges anymore: officeholders are willing to topple America’s integrity and credit. But they change their tune when it comes to guns. Guns are a protected, untouchable class, attributed to the Second Amendment. To the NRA and some in Congress, the Second Amendment is more important than America’s economic health and growing jobs.
So let’s trade guns for debt. Before final repeal is passed, match any cuts in safety net programs with major restrictions on guns and ammunition. If people who use earned benefits are dependent, then people who cling to guns are pathetic little bullies who can’t handle their lives and replace their reality by fantasies of artificial courage to become imaginary heroes while others bleed and die.
Repeal Obamacare? Repeal the Second Amendment that has never lived up to its promise. Would repeal make gun ownership illegal? No, but gun ownership would have no more constitutional standing than milk, which is certainly better for you than a gun. The magic in a gun is its destruction. Its enchantment is its ultimate power to kill. A gun isn’t penicillin or a panacea; honestly, its hypothesized life-saving power extracts a high real cost. That why the NRA suppresses research and never cites numbers that examine the consequences of its positions. The research numbers available fully support repeal of the Second Amendment, with the right of gun ownership being regulated by ordinary state and federal statutes. So forward this to your local media outlets and mainstream columnists. They can reach me, unarmed, on Twitter. I’m prepared for their onslaught and old nonsense. I live in the eighteenth ranked state for gun deaths.
Repeal the Second Amendment. The Constitution is being used to guarantee something it never intended. The Second Amendment opened a back door to a right to kill.