Wednesday, February 3, 2021

Fighting back against the H.R.127 Gun Control bill

The bill is a nightmare.  So this is an opportunity for us.  We all know a bunch of people who aren't really hard core left or right, people who live in the vast squishy middle.  The Democrats presented Joe Biden to these people as "a return to normalcy".  OK, let's hold them to this.

I posted this two years ago, but am rolling it out for our discussion with these folks in the squishy middle.  Here are some suggested tag lines to hit them with:

Is it fair to tax someone $2000 on a $1000 rifle he bought years ago?  Why?

What will this tax do to poor people?  What will it do to poor minorities in bad neighborhoods who have watched the murder rate go up by 30% last year?

What problem do you think Congress is trying to solve with this bill, because it looks like it will disarm (especially) poor minorities?  Is it worth it?

Basically, force them to grapple with the question is it dumb or is it evil? 

Remember, we all interact with lots of people, especially on social media.  This is a perfect opportunity to make these people look at the ugliness of what the Democrats are proposing.  Make them own it.

(originally posted March 2, 2018)

A Gun Rights Mind Virus

You meet different sorts of people who advocate for gun control.  Some of them are hard core control freaks who just want to crush flyover country, but if you're like me you don't run across them very often.  Mostly you run across people who aren't shooters or gun owners, who haven't thought about the issue very much, but who are disturbed about the constant media drumbeat about shootings and who just want to "do something".

We need these people on our side, or at least standing on the sidelines.  How do we separate them from the gun control pack.

My last post was how I approach this: I'm not opposed to gun control, I'm opposed to stupid and useless gun control.  This is a mind virus that I'm trying to infect them with.  I want to sow seeds of doubt in their minds to get them out of the gun controller's camp and onto the sidelines.  Hopefully (if the virus really takes) it will begin the process where they actually start to think about things and they may even end up on our side.

It's a battle for the (very large) middle ground.  In the long run, we're not viable without it.

My experience has been pretty good with this.  Most of these folks are decent people.  They want to be fair, and they know that they don't know much about this topic.  My mind virus is a challenge to them - is what you're proposing dumb?  Will it work?  Is it fair?  Nobody wants to be dumb, or unfair.

This is especially true with the sentence that has had more impact than any other I've used with folks like this.  When they say (and they will say it) "But we have to do something", I reply:
Do you want to do something stupid and useless?  That doesn't sound right.
Quite frankly, our choice is to build bunkers or to convince the middle.  Building bunkers makes us look like the dumb (and dangerous) ones.

Yes, the people at the heart of the gun control battle are, well, evil.  No getting past that.  But we don't win without the vast middle.  We don't win by starting from "Gun controllers are evil" (they are wishy-washy gun controllers after all).  We don't win from "Molon late, bitches!" (this seems to make people nervous.

We win from a mind virus that starts to get them to ask themselves the right questions.  Truth is on our side; we can lead others to truth if we want.

UPDATE 3 February 2021 21:45: Every single comment to date has been basically "Muh Second Amendment!!11!!!eleventy!!"  These entirely miss the point of my post.

The point of this post is not to try to establish a framework for our rights (note: rights that I not only agree with but which I have supported for the entire life of this blog).  If you don't realize this, then read the literally hundreds of posts at that link.

If you do realize this, then please don't post any comments that boil down to "Muh Second Amendment!!11!!!eleventy!!"

The point of this post is this from the text of the damn post: 

Basically, force them to grapple with the question is it dumb or is it evil? 

"Them" is your neighbors, acquaintances, and family.  Challenge them - your neighbors, acquaintances, and family - with this exact question.  If you won't do this and want to post about "Muh Second Amendment!!11!!!eleventy!!" then (as Aesop likes to say) you're not tall enough for this ride.

Dang it, this has made me cross.  I normally only delete comments that are spam, but if you don't read for content here and post some more "But muh Second Amendment!!11!!!eleventy!!" I will delete your comment without mercy.  Cathreda mea, regulae meae.  And if you need help on that translation, you really aren't tall enough for this ride.

UPDATE 3 February 2021 22:27: The Queen Of The World points out to me that I should have been more explicit that this was an assignment to all y'all.  This is what you should challenge your friends, neighbors, and family with to force them to confront the evil at the heart of the Democratic proposals.

She points out (correctly) that all of us here are basically of the same belief.  She also points out (correctly) that this point is suggesting how to effectively communicate with those people who are not of this same belief but who are undecided and who believe in fairness.  This may open their eyes.


The Neon Madman said...

No. Just no. We have "compromised" too much in the past, and the time to stand up and say "No more" is here

tsquared said...

I paid taxes on my guns and ammo when I bought them. The government cannot tax them again.

The second amendment is very clear. It says "shall not be infringed". That is a limitation on government creating illegal laws about gun ownership.

Will Brown said...

Addressing only your tag lines suggestions:

1) Change to read: Is it fair to tax someone $2000 on a $1000 purchase bought years ago? Why?

By removing the specific reference to "rifle" in the initial statement, that excludes the likelihood of a visceral rejection of that word from the initial decision matrix. Only after a rejection of the initial premise (IOW it is not fair to tax someone for a past purchase) do you then include firearms to the moral equation. Depending on the respondents reaction, then ask, "Isn't one legal purchase of a legal product much like any other legal purchase of a legal product?" Repetition of the word "legal" is key to directing the respondent's decision-making process on this issue.

2) "What will this tax do to poor people?" should be separated from the crime aspect of this tag line (making them into at least two distinct questions). It remains debatable to what degree individual perceived poverty leads to making a pro-crime action decision among adult human beings of US nationality. That there is an association seems well established, but the individual's self perception is key to this being an acceptable argument to those people that would otherwise accept being categorized in this economic class.

3) Remove this question from Congress's intent, and shift it to how such a law might adversely affect a [insert citizenship modifier here] person's intent for their own welfare.

It is a near-universal belief that [politician] takes care of themselves first, and that we all "know what's best for me". Restating this question in that context makes the issue an entirely personal one for any potential voter.

Following up these questions with, "Is this just another example of Congress being dumb, or evil?" would hopefully move the moral aspect of any legislation that reduces citizen freedom(s) into a more prominent position in the ensuing debates, whether or not guns are involved. Always include gun ownership rights in the discussion, but make them seemingly secondary (or even tertiary) concerns. It's a lot easier for people to agree, "Yeah, that too!" once they already agree on the importance of some other right also being restricted/denied.

A virus functions by altering - seducing - an existing cell into a different function; if we make an effort to argue gun ownership rights as a seduction, we might have better success in attracting others to the cause.

No tongue, there are limits to all things.

Beans said...

Much better is to edumacate people on the actual wording of the 2nd Amendment, and the intent behind it.

No tax is fair. That's what our forefathers engaged in a war to death with England way back when,

Most every attack by our government upon the citizenry has been over taxes. Think about that. Even Waco and Ruby Ridge, attacks because of a $200 tax stamp.

We passed the hill to die on a while ago. We are against the Buffalo Jump to die on, and they're pushing us over the edge. We fight now, or we get pushed or we jump. There's no turning back.

This bill is a direct attack upon the 2nd Amendment, seeking to destroy the 'gun culture' that the Left so loves to talk about.

No wobblyness. No NRA back-room deals. Either this is killed outright or we are over.

No on taxes and constraints on components.
No on taxes and constraints on ammunition.
No on taxes and constraints on any arms or weapons.
Just No.

Two letters... Starts with 'N' and ends in 'O' and sounds like 'HO.'

Richard said...

too late

Aesop said...

I get the point, but anyone who doesn't know, in a kneejerk fashion, that the Democommunists are evil, by this point in history, isn't tall enough for this ride.

We have tried to win over the clueless for our entire lives. I'm pretty sure anyone listening has already figured things out, at least insofar as it matters anymore.

They are shutting down free speech, cheerfully.
They want to pack the courts, all the way to SCOTUS.
They have blatantly stolen elections to achieve a tenuous grasp on power.
And the first thing they propose is to come after guns and all ammunition, wholesale and retail, en masse.

My reasoned reply to any such attempt will be sent via airmail, at about 3200fps.

They do not have enough Stassi to attempt what they wish to undertake, and are wholly ignorant of the fact that after we run out of targets in tactical gear, we're coming after those in suits and ties who sent 'em, and then the people - all of them - that empowered both. This isn't going to be like Nuremburg in 1946, it's going to be like Paris in 1790.

We talk about what happened to the British at Lexington Common and Concord Bridge 245 years later.
What's going to happen to the modern day equivalent is going to be talked about like what Rome did to Carthage in the Third Punic War, over 2000 years later.
Nota bene that afterwards, there was no need for a Fourth Punic War, precisely because no Carthage against which to wage it.
All their men executed, women and children sold into slavery, animals slaughtered, wells poisoned and fields salted, seems to sum it up. (What's that? Slavery is illegal? Very well, kill them all. Yes, all. If smashing babies' heads against rocks was good enough for the Psalmist in Holy Scripture, it's good enough for me.)

They opened the ball, and they called the tune.
Now it's going to be time to pay the piper.

This isn't a constitutional problem.
It's an existential one.

Glen Filthie said...

Holy crap, Aesop! You are on a roll, HAR HAR HAR.

Guys...informing people and trying to get folks to actually think is a no-go now. Liberals think with their feelings. Feelings trump logic, research and critical thought every time. My family is virulently anti-gun. When we fought about it they’d just flat out refuse to think. Facts and figures...? Bah! Reasoned debate? Who needs it? The mass media told them that guns are bad. The cool kids in Hollywood think they’re bad. End of story. Every time these lefty shitheads come to power they take a run at our guns and rights.

I won’t even argue it anymore. A couple years back my mom snarked, “Why do you need an AR15???” The family fell into shocked silence when I replied, “what does a stupid old woman actually know about guns and crime? I need a gun BFYTW...”

I am not going to argue with them any more. If they want to get stupid about it... come and get them I suppose. Bring body bags. Bags, as in “plural”. I’ve had enough of this bullshit. Let’s get it over with.

JaimeInTexas said...

I would tell the ID10T, er. other person, that I will take a few steps in their direction, but in no way I will meet them any where close to half-way, and say that I will agree to, fill-in the blank. Then I would state conditions that currently already renders a person to be prohibited from owning a firearm. I might mention the Firearms Act of 1938. Depending, I might also start asking questions about their knowledge of firearms. I always argue like can change their mind but I know that cannot do that. My goal is seed their own doubt. With some people, there is no hope.

In no way, though, do I agree with giving an inch to new legislation.

The Constitution is so a dead letter.

As I every so often ask people, imagine we are back to January 1791 and there are no amendments - there is no Bill Of Rights.

Does the FedGov have the authority/power to:
1) establish a religion, or
2) prohibit the free exercise of religion, or
3) abridge the freedom of speech, or
4) abridge the freedom of the press, or
5) abridge the right of the people peaceably to assemble and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances, or
6) infringe on the right to keep and bear arms, etc.?

We are arriving at the "It's an existential one."

The Freeholder said...

HR 127 is misdirection. The real gun control push is going to come from a different direction. Not smart enough to say which one.

aczarnowski said...

Hear hear. Given enough time this track does work with the portion of the populace you're targeting -- the undecided middle.

But it doesn't address the overarching problem.

Being undecided in the first place these people don't vote based on guns. We've all become single issue voters and this isn't theirs. If the politician on their side hates guns so be it.

Everybody here is right. We can influence the undecided and that's good work. We also can't expect them to stop where we're going in this hand basket.

Peteforester said...

To me, this is pretty simple. If Congress can gut one of our constitutionally protected rights so easily, what's to keep it from gutting the rest? That's the angle I always approach these arguments from.

Funny; the cost of an ID card, usually about $15.00 for a five year ID, was the dealbreaker for requiring an ID to vote, being that it would bee too much of a financial hardship on the poor. These same people are among those who would most likely need a gun just to STAY ALIVE where they live. How can requiring a license, a "mental evaluation," and the attending of a gun safety class, replete with having to pass a test be anything LESS than economic hardship for the poor??? The psych eval; what would constitute a "NO," and who would be setting that bar? Uh-huh; the very people PUSHING the law. THERE is the ever-present "sliding scale" that's always written into these "comprehensive" "gun" control laws...

...Requiring a license relegates a RIGHT to being a PRIVILEGE, which can be revoked at any time for any reason...

...Sorry, but my rights aren't up for "compromise..."

Ken said...

I think The Freeholder is right. If you go to where the bill is posted, you'll see it has a big fat goose egg for cosponsors (it's Sheila Jackson Lee's bill).

Richard said...

As to your update, there are very few people that are persuadable. Everyone is locked into their tribe/bubble and not just on guns. I did conduct an experiment on a (former?) friend several weeks ago trying to penetrate his bubble. I wasn't as nice as you suggest but wasn't hugely hostile either. No answer yet and I am not really expecting one at this point.

Given this, the choices seem to be surrender, fight or separate. I much prefer the last.

Bear Claw Chris Lapp said...

Its so they don't have to tax the criminal since he stole the gun. Your not thinking people. c'mon man