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Monday, Jan. 23, 2017

Candidates take aim at gun owners

Posted Sunday, September 23, 2007, at 10:44 PM

The war of words comes around during every presidential election.

Candidates arm themselves with rhetoric and aim straight at America's gun owners.

At one point in the campaign season I'm sure we'll see at least one inept gun user/candidate trying to go hunting in an attempt to woo hunters' votes. Keep Dick Cheney far away, please.

Rudy Guiliani, a member of the party which you'd expect to be pro-gun, has referred to the National Rifle Association as "extremists." And as New York mayor he filed suit against gun makers and distributors over violent crimes, as though they were responsible for what criminals do with their trigger fingers.

Meanwhile, Democrats Barack Obama and John Edwards both have indicated they may be against individuals owning assault weapons.

"I'm a strong believer in the rights of hunters and sportsmen to have firearms. I'm a believer in homeowners having a firearm to protect their home and their family…It's hard for me to find a rationale for having a 17-clip semiautomatic," Obama has said.

"I believe in the Second Amendment and I think it's important for hunters' rights to be protected," Edwards says. "But I don't think you need an AK-47 to hunt...There's some weapons that are not necessary for sportsmen and hunters."

I couldn't find any direct comments about the issue by Hillary Rodham Clinton in a quick Google search .

I've got mixed emotions about assault weapon ownership. Does a private citizen really need an AK-47? But, should a true, law-abiding gun collector be limited from ownership?

"My friends, gun owners are not extremists; you are the core of modern America," John McCain said, referring to the Second Amendment's guarantee of the right to keep and bear arms.

I wouldn't exactly call gun owners "the core" of America (and I don't mean that negatively), but I'd say they represent America's mainstream.

The United States would be best served by a federal database of all guns, their owners and sales. That's no more intrusive to privacy than databases of vehicles and their owners.

And anyone who has been found guilty of even pointing a weapon, not just shooting it, at someone in anger -- and I'm not including legitimate self-defense -- should be banned from ever again legally owning a gun. Since those angry persons are often criminals who operate outside the realm of legality, I doubt such a law would make that much difference.

Gun owners who are law-abiding hunters and/or collectors will be the only ones really hurt by attempts at gun control beyond reason. I suspect it's impossible to keep guns and criminals apart, so any additional laws shouldn't penalize the innocent in order to hurt the unreachable.

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Very well stated...

Guns will always be around, and I think we should not over rule the 2nd amendment... But I do agree, that each and every gun and its owner should be registered in a database, just like people and their automobiles are.

We will never take the guns away, regardless if we make it illegal to have them, because pot, cocaine, crack, and meth or all illegal and their sales and users are still at all time highs. In other words, if selling guns becomes illegal, then there in lies a new black market, this time for deadly weapons.

But, just like with illegal drugs, you can arrest a person for using or having them in their posession, but that doesn't prevent them from obtaining it again.

-- Posted by darrick_04 on Mon, Sep 24, 2007, at 7:48 AM

agreed. There are lots of guns that aren't good for much but target practice, collecting and killing a man with one shot to the right area. Although, I do not own any AK-47's I wouldn't mind popping off a few rounds just to say that I have. =) Criminals get most of their guns by means of stealing them, which as ironic as it may seem is why most law abiding citizens buy them, to keep people from stealing our stuff. If you own any "serious kill a bunch of people in a few seconds, military grade weapons" they should be stored in a LOCKED gun safe. I assure you that you won't need much more than a 38 to stop a robber/home intruder in his/her tracks, so that gun safe with trigger locks should be no inconvience to you.

-- Posted by LauraSFT on Mon, Sep 24, 2007, at 8:02 AM

I believe the original intent of the 2nd amendment was to allow for a "citizen army". It was also a right that the forefathers put in place so that the people of this country would have the means to hold off an enemy attack. This being the case, I believe that RESPONSIBLE citizens should be allowed to own and maintain assault rifles in their homes as long as they are secured. It's not that I think that Bedford county is going to be invaded (at least not any more than it already is), but with the second amendment intact, we have the means to defend ourselves if it is.

-- Posted by Thom on Mon, Sep 24, 2007, at 12:27 PM

I think some of the paranoia about gun control these days is based on the fear that we might have to defend ourselves against our own government. I agree that most of the radical groups hoarding arms and going undergroud are nuts, but not all paranoids are crazy.

-- Posted by devan on Mon, Sep 24, 2007, at 1:34 PM

Actually, the reason they want the citizens to have guns is to overthrow a possible dictator if they ever gained control....hey wait a minute....

-- Posted by Evil Monkey on Mon, Sep 24, 2007, at 3:55 PM

Evil Monkey, I was going to mention that part, but I knew where it would head. I'm much more concerned with the politicians that are trying to limit our right to bear arms, and everyone else should be as well. As far as the people being paranoid, it's not paranoia if everyone's really out to get you.

-- Posted by Thom on Mon, Sep 24, 2007, at 5:06 PM

I agree with the majority of the aticle, but a national registry would ultimately be used for confiscation as soon as the winds of political change shifted direction. Indeed, there is already a rather underhanded registry kept through forms used in background checks. However, those papers are thrown out after 20 years. I really don't want people knowing what I have when they decide it's time to take it. It's happened in much of Europe and Austraila, at the urging of "concerned gun safety" activists. Ironically but predictably, the confiscations have done anything by reduce gun crime.

Even if a registry were created, I would not comply. Such a thing could never be used in order to stop crimes or anything of that nature- the "ballistic fingerprinting" of CSI is a bunch of Hollywood myth, and "microstamped pistol parts" are another crock. It would only be used to harass law abiding gun owners- say that someone is killed with a .45 caliber handgun. They have no way of knowing what gun it came from- even after all of that ballistic analysis (Ask Maryland what they think about it). At most, police could tell the type of bullet and caliber. That leaves them with only millions and millions of .45 caliber handguns and rifles out there. They would have to check everyone with a .45 ACP, .45 Colt, .45 GAP and every other caliber sharing a common diameter. Then they would have to harass every person who owns a weapon in those cartridges to be even remotely objective in many shootings.

The registry is just another means of encroachment on the rights of gun owners. While it may sound nice and pretty on the surface, it will do no good, and it will be used by the gun control gang as soon as they get the chance.

-- Posted by Cstrad on Mon, Sep 24, 2007, at 7:44 PM

When guns are outlawed only outlaws will have guns. Count me in as an outlaw.

-- Posted by rebel4ever37 on Thu, Sep 27, 2007, at 1:23 PM

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David Melson is a copy editor and staff writer for the Times-Gazette.