Today's Tactical Anatomy post on Facebook cites a crucial illustration of the need for unfettered citizen access to firearms. It's a simple anecdote describing one woman's lawful use of a firearm (called a DUG, a Defensive Use of a Gun, which I'll explain in more depth shortly). There's the teaser, and the ostensible reason for my blog post today. I'll get back to you on that in a moment, so please bear with me here.
The current presidential election campaign is shaping up as a battle between diametrically opposed ideologies. It appears to me that never, never, NEVER in my lifetime has so much been at stake. On the one hand, we have a political outsider who has seized the Republican nomination from the Party bosses, and is running a ramshackle campaign that despite its lack of sophistication is competing very well against a slick and professional campaign run by its opponents. On the other hand, we have a political insider who received her Party's nomination as a quasi-coronation, and is running a very expensive and tghtly controlled campaign that should, according to the jaded political commentators of the media, be ahead by double-digits.
Both candidates are deeply flawed individuals. I don't want to vote for either of them, and most of my friends are saying the same thing. This is a national embarassment, and should trigger a wholesale overhaul of our presidential selection process, otherwise known as the Primary System. I doubt that will happen, but that's not the subject of this blog.
No, the subject of this blog is "gun control". Again.
Yet again, America is under assault by the Democratic Party's fixation on "gun control" as the single solution to violent crime in our nation. Bernie Sanders--a communist in all but name--was the first to raise the issue during the primaries, but Hillary Clinton's campaign saw that "gun control" appeared to be a great boost to Sanders' campaign, so Team Hillary usurped the issue and made it hers. She did this despite the lessons learned by Bill Clinton and the Democrats after the Clinton Assault Weapons ban of 1994, which was perceived as the primary cause of the Democrats' electoral battering in the 1996 election.
The Democrats avowed in public to stay away from "gun control" as a political platform plan, as it was considered to be electoral poison. Apparently, they have decided they were wrong, and Hillary is running strongly on that very platform today. She's gambling all her chips on her gut instinct that the national conscience has shifted far enough left since 1996 that she can risk this move.
I sincerely hope she loses. Not just because I oppose "gun control" (which I do), but because I hope this defeat will hammer a death-blow to the Democratic Party's fascination with disarmament of the public.
The post by Kelsie Lee Evans that I shared on Facebook is a striking example of the reason Hillary Clinton is wrong, and why she MUST be defeated in this election.
Dr. Gary Kleck, a criminologist in Florida, published a landmark study on Americans' use of firearms for self-defense back in 1996. It was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, of all places. JAMA is a notably gun-unfriendly journal, and the scientific voice of the AMA, which is a decidedly anti-gun organization. Kleck's article cited his research, which demonstrated that Americans use firearms in defense of person and/or property 2.5 million times annually.
Now, don't gloss over that number, because it's important. TWO POINT FIVE MILLION. That is a LOT of people who used firearms for self-defense. If you add that up over the 20 years since Kleck's study was published, that means FIFTY MILLION people need a gun to stop a crime being committed against them since 1996. That's 15% of Americans, folks.
Now, if you compare that number to the number of homicides over the same period, we're not even close. America experiences something north of 10,000 homicides annually, although that number is steadily declining. In 2013, the last year of FBI data I seriously looked at, 69% of those homicides involved use of a firearm, or about 8454 homicides. Some of those were justifiable homicides, by the way. (If you want to look at the data yourself, you can start here: https://ucr.fbi.gov/crime-in-the-u.s/2013/crime-in-the-u.s.-2013/offenses-known-to-law-enforcement/expanded-homicide ) And of those 8454 homicides, 183 were considered justifiable self-defense homicides.
Now, think about these justifiable homicide statistics in light of Gary Kleck's estimated 2.5 million defensive uses of a gun (DUG) annually. If a firearm is used to kill one's attacker in his attempt to commit a crime, at most this would amount to 0.007% of the cases where someone used a firearm to defend herself. The corollary is that in 99.993% of cases, the would-be victim stopped her attacker by brandishing her firearm or by shooting at her attacker without killing him.
But Hillary Clinton thinks this is not sufficient justification for American's to continue to arm themselves for self-defense. Hillary apparently thinks that it would be better for America if 2,500,000 people who successfully fought off an attacker in 2013 would instead become crime victims in 2017. She thinks that the 183 lives "saved" by banning our means of committing justifiable homicide are worth the 2,499,819 law-abiding citizens' lives crippled or lost in the exchange.
As Kelsie Lee Evans' story illustrates, it is the women of America who will suffer. On that fateful evening when Kelsie simply showed her firearm to a would-be attacker (that's the definition of brandishing, folks), despite having done a whole lot of things wrong leading up to that moment, she was able to prevent being assaulted, robbed, raped, or murdered.
But Hillary Clinton wants to take away Kelsie's ability to do so. She wants to take away your right, and my right, to do the same. "Not so!" Cry Hillary's supporters. "She never said that!!"
Oh, but she did. This is her comment on the Supreme Court's Heller decision:
“I was proud when my husband took [the National Rifle Association] on, and we were able to ban assault weapons, but he had to put a sunset on so 10 years later. Of course [President George W.] Bush wouldn’t agree to reinstate them,” said Clinton.
“We’ve got to go after this,” Clinton continued. “And here again, the Supreme Court is wrong on the Second Amendment. And I am going to make that case every chance I get.”
Here's where I got that quotation: http://freebeacon.com/politics/leaked-audio-clinton-says-supreme-court-is-wrong-on-second-amendment/ . Yes, I know that's a "right-wing" internet news page. But it's backed up by the Washington Post, which is a decidedly "left-wing" newspaper, here: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/volokh-conspiracy/wp/2016/06/06/hillary-clinton-on-guns-and-the-second-amendment/?utm_term=.435c2d60d0b7 .
In case you didn't get the memo on Heller, it was the landmark case in which the Supreme Court decided that the individual's right to possess and use personal firearms for purposes of self-defense was our Constitutional right. Hillary Clinton has stated unequivocally that she holds the opposite view on this crucial court case, and that if elected to the presidency, she intends to go after that decision and other rights granted under the Second Amendment "every chance [she can] get."
In the Post interview, which was written by a strongly anti-gun reporter (Jonathan Adler), Hillary's words are "nuanced" away from the stark reality of her anti-gun position. She cites "reasonable, commonsense" gun control measures, which is the Left's way of hiding their true agenda (registration and confiscation of privately-owned firearms).
Make no mistake: Hillary Clinton wants to tear the guts out of the Second Amendment of the Constitution (as well as the First and Fourth Amendments, just in case you were keeping score) to achieve political goals that we can only guess at today. If she is elected, I have no doubt she will at least partly succeed, and as her Supreme Court and other Federal court appointees take over the bench in our nation, she will eventually succeed in whole. America will be disarmed.
I am betting that Hillary Clinton and her slick campaign have misjudged Americans. I'm betting that We the People will hand her a resounding defeat in November, and the Democrat "gun-control" juggernaut will collapse in a heap of electoral rubble. Unfortunately, I'm a lousy gambler, and I lose more often than I win at games of chance. In this ultimate game, I fervently hope and pray that my bet comes in. Seven, come eleven!