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Quotes from the Global Gun Control Debate

By    |   Friday, 03 Apr 2015 05:11 PM

The fight over gun control in the United States comes in cycles, surging after an incident of violence and then fading to the background again as other issues take priority. It’s interesting to take a look at some of the widely different opinions that have been expressed over the years.

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Thomas Jefferson
Contrary to some gun control advocates who insist that the protection of people should be left in the hands of the government, Jefferson thought one important reason for civilians to be armed is to protect themselves from the government:

“The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in Government.”

“The constitutions of most of our States assert that all power is inherent in the people; that ... it is their right and duty to be at all times armed.”

Walter E. Williams
Political commentator Walter E. Williams seems to share Jefferson’s views:

“The framers gave us the Second Amendment not so we could go deer or duck hunting but to give us a modicum of protection against congressional tyranny.”

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Handgun Control, Inc.
Advocacy group Handgun Control, Inc., takes a very different stance:

“The thought that average citizens will somehow be better able to successfully defend themselves more effectively than our nation's trained professionals is absurd.”

State vs. Kerner, 1921
A North Carolina court decision clearly stated the court’s belief that the Second Amendment meant just what it says:

“The maintenance of the right to bear arms is a most essential one to every free people and should not be whittled down by technical constructions.”

Justice Antonin Scalia
In the 2008 case District of Columbia vs. Heller, the United States Supreme Court ruled that Washington, D.C.’s handgun ban was unconstitutional. Scalia’s written opinion takes it a step further, noting the Second Amendment doesn’t grant a right; it simply acknowledges an existing right:

“The very text of the Second Amendment implicitly recognizes the pre-existence of the right and declares only that it 'shall not be infringed.'”

Sen. Charles Schumer
Gun control became a hot topic again in 2012 after the tragic school shooting in Sandy Hook. Many people, including Chuck Schumer, began suggesting that the constitutional right to bear arms might not be absolute:

"Those who are pro-gun control have to admit that there is a Second Amendment right to bear arms . . . once we establish that there is a constitutional right to bear arms we should have the right admit, and maybe they'll be more willing to admit, that no amendment is absolute after all."

Rahm Emanuel
Speaking to a group of police officers, Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel used the shooting to step up his support for a ban on assault weapons:

“We can't just stand behind you and say we support our men and women in the law enforcement community and then not have the laws on the books that help you do your job every day. And it's time as a city we have an assault weapon ban. And it's time as a state that we have an assault weapon ban. And it's time as a country that we have an assault weapon ban."

Rep. Louie Gohmert
Of course, not everyone responded to the Sandy Hook shooting with renewed calls for gun control. Representative Gohmert stated that, if the principal had been armed, she may have been able to stop the gunman:

"I wish to God she had had an M-4 in her office, locked up so when she heard gunfire, she pulls it out and she didn't have to lunge heroically with nothing in her hands.”

Quotes curated from quotations.com and ABC News.

This article does not constitute legal advice. Check the current gun laws before purchasing or traveling with a firearm.

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The fight over gun control in the United States comes in cycles, surging after an incident of violence and then fading to the background again as other issues take priority. It’s interesting to take a look at some of the widely different opinions that have been expressed over the years.
gun laws, gun control
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2015-11-03
Friday, 03 Apr 2015 05:11 PM
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