Withdrawing Support for Connecticut Citizens Defense League—Repeal The Second Amendment

I am removing my link to Connecticut Citizens Defense League (CCDL) from OGNDY.

I joined the National Rifle Association (NRA) after the mass shooting at Sandy Hook elementary school right here in Newtown where I live almost 3 years ago. That might sound like a counter-intuitive move from a guy that by no means is a die-hard gun enthusiast. Although I am a gun owner, I don’t identify as such; it’s not who I am. Politically most people who know me would say I’m a (far) Left-leaning, liberal/progressive with a dash of Libertarianism. I wouldn’t be offended if you added some kind of Socialist to the mix.

The reason I joined the NRA was in response to the dishonest politicking that took place in the wake of Sandy Hook, nationally in general, and more specifically here in CT where governor Dannel Malloy used downright unconstitutional bully tactics to force through meaningless, feel-good legislation.

I hadn’t paid much attention to the NRA prior to becoming a member, but I quickly discovered that they were a bunch that held values so far removed from my own that I didn’t want to be associated with them.

Then I tried Gun Owners of America and dropped them quickly for the same reason.

Finally I discovered CCDL, who, on the surface seemed like a less rabid organization, a local group of people who promoted safe gun-ownership, sensible gun laws and a polite way of conveying their ideas. I made a small contribution, put their sticker on my car and linked to them on my blog

I later found out, through various interactions with other members, that the same vitriol, the same hatred, the same fanaticism that is the trademark of the NRA, also permeates CCDL, but I didn’t disown them formally and kept the sticker on my car.

After Thursday’s shooting in Oregon at he Umpqua Community College I had to ask myself why it was important for me to belong to an (any) organization that promotes gun-ownership. I couldn’t come up with a reason. There are more important things for me to do than spend time and money to support the cause of private gun ownership in America.

I’m not strong pro-gun. I’m not strong anti-gun. I’m not getting rid of my guns (even though I haven’ fired any of them in almost two years), but I could live a happy, fulfilling life if I got rid of them all this minute. However, I do see quite clearly that America has a problem with guns. There are a lot of guns out there—I’m not going to say too many, but I am saying too many in the wrong hands. I will also say that the level to which some people fetishize their guns borders on a mental disorder.

To deny that America has a gun problem is to be delusional in the extreme.

Let me be clear: I don’t know what the solution is. The reason we have evolved this gun culture peculiar to America is historical. There is no easy fix. I do know (by my own reasoning; I’m not going to link to polls and academic studies) that limiting magazine capacities, expanding background checks and imposing registration (all of which I have no objection to) will make a very small dent at best in the number of gun killings. I also know that there is an obstacle that will hinder any legislation that will significantly and within reasonable time reduce the level of gun violence. That obstacle is called The Second Amendment To The Constitution Of The United States.

A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.

This is one of the most shoddily written pieces of legal text we have and practically begs for a wide range of interpretations, all the way from regulated militias, and only regulated militias (conveniently leaving out what constitutes a militia, much less a well regulated one) has the right to own guns, all the way to a free-for-all to own and carry whatever they want, wherever they want, whenever they want. The current interpretation (by SCOTUS, the only one that counts) is that gun-ownership is a personal, individual right. My right (and yours) to own and carry firearms, is protected by the Constitution Of The United States. Do you begin to see why gun-control reform is an uphill battle?

I cringe when I hear fellow Liberals argue against guns, argue for stricter gun control laws, cry about dead babies, and in the same breath say they’re not for bans or abolishing 2A. This is cowardly, distasteful dishonesty at best, or downright stupidity at worst.

As long as The 2nd Amendment stands, there is zero chance of any meaningful change to our gun laws. So let me be the first Left-leaning gun owner to say: I support a repeal of the 2nd amendment.

I understand that it is a next-to-impossible task, but just like the obscene amount and importance of money in politics will always stand in the way of a functioning government, so will 2A always stand in the way of meaningful reform of our gun laws.

  • Get rid of money in politics or accept that our democratic institutions are bought and paid for by corporate interests.
  • Get rid of the second amendment or accept that mass shootings is the new normal.
Spot the difference.

Spot the difference.

For clarity: I am not advocating banning guns. I am simply pointing out that our problem with guns can’t be solved as long as the nation’s founding document specifically lists gun ownership as something akin to a natural right imbued in us by our Creator (don’t get me started). Personally, I see no good reason for a modern, advanced society in 2015 to have such a statute on the books. In 1791, yes. 2015, no. But that’s just me.

The Bill Of Rights – 1st Amendment To The US Constitution

“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

This is the 1st Amendment to the US Constitution, most noted for guaranteeing us the right of free expression and freedom of religion (separation of church and state). It also gives you the right to petition the government with any grievances you might have.

police pepper spraying students

An example of law enforcement respecting your right to peaceful assembly according to the 1st Amendment to the US Constitution. The name of the cocksucker with the spray can is John Pike. Picture credit: Public domain, bitch!

You can do this in person (actually travel physically to Washington D.C. and knock on your congressman’s door), via snail mail, or, these days, most commonly electronically via email or the representative’s/senator’s website. The most effective way to catch the president’s attention is by starting a petition on whitehouse.gov.

Rest assured that your message will never reach the president’s desk and no matter how many co-signers you can gather it will never change policy. It’s all pretend! Your petition, in a best case scenario, will be filed away on a server and maybe in a distant future studied by presidential historians. Your email address will be saved for future spam campaigns begging for money. Worst case scenario, men in black with dark shades and bulges under their coats driving black SUVs with tinted glass will show up at your house wanting to “ask a few questions”. Be polite.

There is one exception to this rule: if your petition is accompanied by a huge wad of cash you might get through. But it has to be a lot of money. More than you have or will ever earn in your lifetime. It needs to be big corporation-sized contributions (aka “bribes”). Because after SCOTUS’ ruling that corporations are people and money is speech the playing field has been knocked even more out of kilter than it used to be. Mr Smith no longer goes to Washington. Just doesn’t happen. The only time high ranking elected representatives, including the president, are interested in you and your opinion, is in the lead-up to an election when they will lie through their teeth, contradict themselves in the same sentence, and make any kind of bogus promise to court you and your vote in order to keep their jobs. It’s never too late to make statements that are not meant to be taken factually (meaning it’s OK to lie if the intent is to get your support on election day).

corruption

A business man petitioning his elected representative (or former US Senator from Idaho Larry Craig seconds before he got busted in the men’s rest room at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, I forget which). Picture credit: Really?

I know I’m beating a dead horse here, and that I’ve said this many times before, but it bears repeating: the United States is a two-party dictatorship where we elect (not by the “one-man-one-vote” model as you are lead to believe) a mostly reasonably benevolent, but crooked to the bone, pseudo-dictator and congressional lieutenants (that’s mobster hierarchy terminology), with term limits.

And the only way to win is with money. Lots of it. Billions of dollars per election cycle. You, and I mean this quite seriously, don’t play any significant part in this process. Half of eligible voters are so disillusioned with the process that they don’t even bother to vote. If more of us did, we might be able to change shit. American exceptionalism.

I’ve quoted this a few times before, and I will keep on doing so until it’s fixed, or I die, the latter being the most likely scenario. I just hope it won’t be in prison.

“It must be fun to watch a president run, just ask the man who owns one.”
~ Steppenwolf, from the album/song Monster

john kay steppenwolf

Please note that the front man of Steppenwolf, John Kay, was born in, and fled East Germany with his mother as a child. Not saying it carries any significance that a man who escaped a truly, bonafide, brutal and deadly dictatorship later became a rock star who wrote the greatest protest song ever written against the corrupt regime in his new, adopted country. Just think about it, is all I’m asking.

God bless y’all and these United States of America!

Disclaimer: This posting is for entertainment purposes only and in no way should be taken as a a call to overthrow the legally elected government, for which I have only the deepest respect.