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CNN’s Jake Tapper, a man who’s ostensibly a journalist, shared the opinion Tuesday that comparing the pointlessness of banning guns to the pointlessness of banning driving is “stupid.”
During a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on gun violence earlier that morning, Louisiana Sen. John Kennedy pushed back on the left’s latest calls for gun control by pointing out the fruitlessness of trying to regulate criminal behavior.
“We have a lot of drunk drivers in America that are killing a lot of people. We ought to try to combat that too. But I think what many folks on my side of the aisle are saying is that the answer is not to get rid of all sober drivers. The answer is to concentrate on the problem,” he said.
He also compared the smearing of gun owners with the smearing of Muslims.
“We have had a problem in this world for some time with both domestic and international terrorists. Many terrorists happen to be Muslims. When a Muslim jihadist blows up a school full of school children, we’re told not to condemn all of the actions of those of the Muslim faith because of the actions of a few,” he said.
“And I agree with that. So why doesn’t the same rule apply to the 100 million plus gun owners in America who are exercising their constitutional right? I think we ought to keep that in mind, ladies and gentlemen, as we talk about this issue.”
It was a valid argument whose basis has been posited by numerous figures, including former President Ronald Reagan, but Tapper, an ostensible journalist, disagreed.
“I mean, I don’t even know what to say to that. It’s so stupid,” he said Tuesday afternoon CNN after playing a clip of Kennedy’s remarks.
Abby Phillips, also ostensibly a journalist, agreed.
“I don’t think it’s — obviously, it’s not — that is not a good analogy, but I mean to your earlier point … there is a gulf between where Republicans are and where Democrats are, even on the issue of background checks,” she said.
“Republicans are increasingly opposed to universal background checks and when you hear the argument that Senator Kennedy is making, what it is it’s a slippery slope argument, the base is telling them any sort of increase in gun control measures is going to be a step toward eradicating, you know, gun ownership in this country altogether.”
The crux of Kennedy’s argument was that you can’t stop something illegal like drunk driving or a mass shooting by banning the root activity.
The only way to attack illegal activity is to focus on the illegal activity and its perpetrators, former President Reagan argued in a 1983 speech.
“You won’t get gun control by disarming law-abiding citizens. There’s only one way to get real gun control: Disarm the thugs and the criminals, lock them up, and if you don’t actually throw away the key, at least lose it for a long time,” he said.
“You won’t get gun control by disarming law-abiding citizens. There’s only one way to get real gun control: Disarm the thugs and the criminals, lock them up, and if you don’t actually throw away the key, at least lose it for a long time.” – President Reagan pic.twitter.com/5pE1x3d42H
— The Reagan Ranch (@TheReaganRanch) June 25, 2020
Writing in the October 1994 edition of “American Rifleman” magazine, author and attorney Jeffrey R. Snyder concurred, according to Liberty Tree, a 23-year-old site dedicated to archiving quotes on liberty.
“But to ban guns because criminals use them is to tell the innocent and law-abiding that their rights and liberties depend not on their own conduct, but on the conduct of the guilty and the lawless, and that the law will permit them to have only such rights and liberties as the lawless will allow,” he wrote,
“For society does not control crime, ever, by forcing the law-abiding to accommodate themselves to the expected behavior of criminals. Society controls crime by forcing the criminals to accommodate themselves to the expected behavior of the law-abiding.”
Kennedy’s point was that the same applies to drunk driving. Instituting draconian regulations or outright bans on driving would not stop the criminally minded from driving while drunk, given as drunk drivers don’t care for the law in the first place.
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