I'm beginning to wonder if any of the current anti-gun control crowd has participated in a high school debate society... It's almost as if the same people who dream up those Orwellian names for legislative proposals are writing the script for their oral arguments. You know when you hear a bill called something like "The Clean Rivers Sustainability Enforcement Act" it's really a sop to the extraction industry funded by Merchants of Evil like the Koch Brothers, designed to remove regulations that might keep a pollution spewing factory open next to a delicate water table.
Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-of course-Utah) says we have to be careful when we demand background checks on all gun purchases, because that kind of government overreach can put us on the road to tyranny. Besides, he says, those background checks work so well we really should just enforce the ones we have.
Here's the quote from an article on Huff'n'Puff Post:
"That's the way reductions in liberty occur," Hatch told reporters outside the Senate chamber. "When you start saying people all have to sign up for something, and they have a database where they know exactly who's who, and where government can persecute people because of the database, that alarms a lot of people in our country, and it flies in the face of liberty."
Okay, fair enough. If people have to sign up for something, it puts them on a database and then the government can pester them relentlessly. Sort of like signing a voter registration card can get you called in for jury duty. That sort of torment needs to be avoided at all costs in a free society...
But Hatch can't seem to keep the utter truth from spilling out of his blowhole, even when he's trying to obfuscate. He continues with this:
"We do have a check system, and it has worked whenever they really implement it," Hatch said. "I hesitate to go beyond that. Let's implement what we already have."
In other words, if background checks were required for all gun purchases it would prevent a lot of crazy assholes from getting weapons so easily.
Obviously, keeping assault rifles away from crazy assholes is a problem for people who take lots of money from the gun manufacturers (re: the NRA and all of the politicians they support) so requiring background checks at gun shows and for sales between private owners is a non-starter.
Here's a thought: If we have to register our cars, no matter where we buy them, AND we have to provide proof of liability insurance for each and every car we own, why isn't that a threat to liberty? Isn't that just a way to keep track of who owns cars? Doesn't that put all driving Americans on a database a dictatorship could exploit in the future?
But of course, driving a car isn't a right under the Bill of Rights. There's no "amendment" guaranteeing us the right to drive.
We restrict weapons purchases now, and I don't hear anyone crying because it's tough for them to get a shoulder-fired surface to air missile system for their annual duck hunting trips. We don't allow Claymores, or landmines in our yards, or hand grenades, either. So why can't we put simple, common sense restrictions on gun ownership?
Requiring background checks and gun registration on every firearm sold in America is common sense. Saying it's the first step toward tyranny because it works so well is so convoluted it could tie up a contortionist.
Hatch needs to grab a bottle of Geritol and go home to Utah.