Sunday, August 14, 2022

Don’t Let Tech Guru Elon Musk Grab Your Guns.

June 12, 2022 by  
Filed under Opinion, Politics, Tech/Internet, Weekly Columns

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( Some conservatives have overestimated SpaceX and Tesla CEO Elon Musk’s value for promising to bring free speech back to Twitter. He’s far from their friend or ally.

First, he took billions worth of government subsidies, supported disastrous climate change policies, and began funding out-of-state abortion funding through Tesla.. Now, in light of the horrific shootings in Philadelphia, Buffalo, and Texas, Mr. Musk wants the government to, “at a minimum,” require a special permit for assault rifle ownership or “any semi-automatic gun with supersonic ammo and a large magazine.”

Yes, Elon’s advocating that Big Brother violate every Americans’ Second Amendment right, which the Constitution says “shall not be infringed” upon. But in the modern age, when constitutional arguments always seem to amount to losing ones, that’s not a big deal. Elon knows this, hence why he used caricature-like imagery — “supersonic ammo” and “large magazines” — to try and win the gun debate by stroking fear. In the decades I’ve worked at Gun Owners of America, I’ve seen far too many liberal politicians and woke corporations pull this same pseudo- “rationalist” approach to gun control. “We don’t want to take everyone’s guns,” they say, “just the bad guys’!”


Don’t be fooled, though. What big government proponents like Elon are advocating for won’t make us safer, and their proposals will affect the gun rights of you and me just as much as they would anyone else.

What does gun control advocates’ definition of an assault rifle even consist of, though? A gun that has an upper and lower receiver? A gun that has a certain magazine capacity threshold?

It doesn’t seem anyone in the gun control camp, Elon included, is willing to specifically define what they think an assault rifle is — and when they are, they seldom stick to said definition. That’s because they know ambiguity is their best friend. Should Congress impose a new assault rifle measure — one with far less fixed parameters than the one passed in 1994 — they would be able to use it to regulate or ban any gun they don’t like. Today it might describe an AR-15, and for all we know, tomorrow, it can mean a pistol.

The more politically astute gun grabbers (like Elon) say they’re not for outright bans of assault rifles; they’re merely looking for more vigorous background checks. Vetting by whom? President Joseph R. Biden? Rep. Nancy Pelosi and Sen. Chuck Schumer’s U.S. Congress? ATF Acting Director Aaron Richardson? All these influencers have hidden (or not so hidden) agendas and ulterior motives. I don’t want them vetting my gun purchases, and you shouldn’t either.

Even if Congress aptly defined what it believes an assault weapon is, and even if the federal government didn’t abuse any new vetting powers that future legislation may provide it, a new gun control bill in this vein wouldn’t make the United States any safer.

While AR-15 use has crept up in recent years, handguns are still used far more in massacres than rifles. In fact, handguns — not “assault weapons” — were the weapons of choice in the 2007 Virginia Tech massacre, the worst college mass shooting in U.S. history. Should the government be in the business of banning handguns too? The Columbine High School attack also occurred when the federal government had an effective ban on assault weapons. Add it all up, and it’s clear that should Congress enact new “assault rifle” legislation, it would just lead to bad people using different weapons or finding new ways to evade said new restrictions.

Perhaps Mr. Musk should start following the government’s rocket-permitting process before he begins telling lawmakers that everyday Americans should follow a new permitting process for gun ownership. His doing so would cause far fewer explosions and public safety concerns than the outright assault on the Second Amendment he has proposed that will create no benefit whatsoever to America’s streets.

Written by Michael Hammond

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