There was a heated conversation this evening about politics and at one point it turned to gun control and how Barack Obama was going to take away an American’s right to bear arms. This isn’t the first time I have heard this, in fact I have heard it about John Kerry, a gun owner.
So I did a little bit of research on my own.
Responding to District of Columbia v. Heller, Mr Obama pointed out that Justice Scalia (Appointed by Ronald Reagan) had, while ruling that the DC ban went too far, acknowledged that the right to bear arms is “not absolute and subject to reasonable regulations”.
He then says, “I think it’s important for us to recognize that we’ve got a tradition of handgun ownership and gun ownership generally. And a lot of law-abiding citizens use it for hunting, for sportsmanship, and for protecting their families. We also have a violence on the streets that is the result of illegal handgun usage. And so I think there is nothing wrong with a community saying we are going to take those illegal handguns off the streets. And cracking down on the various loopholes that exist in terms of background checks for children, the mentally ill. We can have reasonable, thoughtful gun control measure that I think respect the Second Amendment and people’s traditions.”
Basically he leaves it up to municipalities to decide what to do.
I personally don’t own a gun, nor have I ever fired one. Even though I don’t trust the majority of Americans to do so, I respect and somewhat understand one’s right to own and carry a gun. But with this comes great responsibility. If you can’t go through a background check and wait a couple days or respect a law that requires a safety lock on all firearms then perhaps you aren’t responsible enough to own a weapon.
From my research all Barack Obama wants is reasonable control that will perhaps prevent another incident like the one that occurred at Virginia Tech.
I think that’s both reasonable and fair.