Loading...
Bless the heart of the county commissioners, I think we all will come knocking on your doors when we receive our new...

Calls to abolish Second Amendment a distraction

Gun Rights Rallies-2
1 of 2

People participate in a gun-rights rally as a second amendment flag is carried at the state capitol in Atlanta in April.

Stevens Guns
Loading…

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

The ongoing debate over guns in America has led some to vociferously call for abolishing the Second Amendment.

That’s just not wise thinking.

There are common-sense restrictions on guns that fall within the scope of the Second Amendment.

So there’s no need to even consider abolishing it.

Nevertheless, calls for abolishing the Second Amendment are coming from such respected figures like retired Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens.

And a new poll shows that about 20 percent of Americans favor repealing the Second Amendment.

In reality, that probably shouldn’t be a surprising statistic.

There are actually Americans, after all, who regularly support restrictions on speech that would not be allowed under the First Amendment.

So, of course, there will always be a fringe minority out there yapping for scrapping the Second Amendment.

Or the Third Amendment.

Or the Fourth Amendment.

Or the ...

You get the point.

Fortunately, the anti-Second Amendment extremists have little support in Washington; even blue-state Democrats like Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California have made clear they support gun ownership for self-defense and hunting.

What’s even more striking is that noted, liberal-leaning Harvard law professor Laurence Tribe has also dismissed the campaign to abolish the Second Amendment.

In a piece for The Washington Post, Tribe wrote that the Second Amendment isn’t the problem; in fact, Tribe declared, repealing the Second Amendment would not limit a single gun or enact a single regulation.

The fact is abolishing the Second Amendment isn’t necessary because the Supreme Court has already set some reasonable parameters.

In the Supreme Court’s historic 2008 Heller decision that underlined an individual’s right to bear arms, the court also noted that right wasn’t unlimited — and that certain classes of “dangerous and unusual” weapons could be limited.

The court has also allowed limits on assault weapons, large magazines and the number of weapons that can be stockpiled.

That’s why instead of abolishing the Second Amendment, the focus should be on reducing the ability of Americans to use military-style weapons to kill innocent fellow citizens.

The focus should also be on restricting the ability of mentally ill people — and those with histories of domestic violence — to have easy access to firearms; clearly more safeguards must be built in to immediately “red-flag” such Americans whenever they try to purchase weapons.

There is certainly widespread support for that kind of proactive approach.

In a recent poll, 85 percent even voiced support for letting the police take guns away from people deemed dangerous — and at least five states have such laws in place.

Gun advocates like to criticize the 1994 ban on assault weapons for its emphasis on cosmetic features; they deride it as a naive and unrealistic law designed by people who know nothing about guns.

For example, the 1994 law defined assault weapons based on such features as pistol grips.

In an opinion piece, Palm Beach County criminologist Thomas Gabor said such poor standards of definition have undermined attempts to strictly regulate assault weapons because “the gun industry can easily make cosmetic modifications to skirt the regulation.”

Gabor has proposed a more realistic definition of assault weapons that takes an objective, scientific approach based on lethality — as well as relevant factors like caliber, muzzle velocity, rate of fire, capacity and design flexibility.

That’s a reasonable idea.

And it’s a far more palatable idea than the harebrained suggestion that it’s time for America to abolish the Second Amendment.

The Florida Times-Union of Jacksonville

Loading…

Humans of Greenville

@HumansofGville

Local photographer Joe Pellegrino explores Greenville to create a photographic census of its people.

Editorials

June 10, 2019

As the election results became clear in 2016, financial markets rose amid a surge of economic optimism. That surge continued for two years as Donald Trump and Republicans pursued a pro-growth agenda of tax reform, deregulation and encouraging domestic energy production. But with Democrats now…

June 08, 2019

Keith Cox served the residents of Virginia Beach in the public utilities department for 12 years.

Well-liked by co-workers, he spent his final moments on Friday working to protect them from a gunman in the municipal center — sacrificing his life in the process.

The remembrance of Cox,…

APTOPIX Virginia Beach Shooting-6

June 04, 2019

Give Harry Smith credit for being willing to do his homework and change his mind.

Smith, the usually outspoken and politically conservative chairman of the University of North Carolina Board of Governors, emerged from a recent board meeting and told reporters that his thinking about what to do…

Confederate Monuments-5

June 03, 2019

Vice President Mike Pence came to Charlotte this week for a 2020 Republican National Convention kickoff event. The visit was a reminder of the discomfort many feel in this progressive city about the 2020 RNC — an uneasiness so deep that Mayor Vi Lyles said last summer that she wouldn’t…

RNC Charlotte 2020-4

June 01, 2019

A state budget is a spending plan, but the proposal the state Senate’s Republican majority presented Tuesday is better described as an anti-spending plan. It is an unalloyed version of Senate leader Phil Berger’s iron-rule of government: Cut taxes and spend the absolute minimum. If…

State Of The State North Carolina-3

May 28, 2019

Around the turn of the last century, the steel magnate Andrew Carnegie paid to build 1,689 libraries across the United States. Many are still in use, celebrated as monumental works of philanthropy.

They should be seen as monuments to the failure of public policy. The United States could have built…

May 27, 2019

If you’re a member of the LGBTQ community — or perhaps anyone who has lived in North Carolina the past decade — you were probably surprised to learn that Thom Tillis is a “pro-LGBTQ Republican.”

It’s true, according to the American Unity Fund, a conservative gay…

Border Security Tillis-2

May 25, 2019

Want to understand how the tariffs on China work? Don’t take President Donald Trump’s word for it.

Here’s what he’s had to say. We’ll follow with why he’s wrong, who really pays and who really suffers (hint, it’s not China or Trump).

First, from…

China Trade-2

May 21, 2019

Our planet is on life support.

That’s the dire message from a landmark United Nations report that found one million species of plants and animals — out of a total of eight million — are at risk of extinction as the result of human actions.

It’s a message the world dare not…

Trump Giraffes Endangered

May 20, 2019

Kim Strach, the executive director of the state Board of Elections, was doing a good job before she got fired Monday. She’d helped guide the board through the minefield of the 9th Congressional District election fraud scandal. She’d offered strong suggestions to lawmakers about…

Election 2018 North Carolina-6
49 stories in Editorials. Viewing 1 through 10.
«First Page   «Previous Page        
Page 1 of 5
        Next Page»   Last Page»