Should We Care About the Gun Debate?

Never have so many fallen for so few. Or something like that. Winston Churchill said it better. Whatever.

Gun rights is a boring topic in the Orthodox community, I grant you that. Very few of us own guns. The only time we hear of guns are when we read about Chicago or the Bronx, or the kids schmoozing with the policeman during the break in Yom Tov davening.

But as we cling to G-d, a majority of Americans cling fiercely to guns, millions of guns, hundreds of millions of them. And Obama, they feel, wants to take guns away from them.

So what’s wrong with that? I hear all over. “I agree with the Republicans on most issues, but why do they need guns?”

I have written in the past that all liberal issues should be taken with a grain of salt. Well, gun control is the granddaddy of having the wool pulled over our eyes.

Disregard that Obama can’t deal with 12 million illegal people in the country, forget about 300 million weapons. What are the principal reasons to deny the majority of law-abiding Americans their rights?

The best arguments mustered are that “all mass murders are committed with assault weapons.” (To paraphrase one wag, “All mass murders are committed by young men living  at home.”) Or, as Gov. Cuomo said, “No one hunts with an assault rifle. No one needs 10 bullets to kill a deer.” Or better yet, “why do you need a gun?”

I like that last answer because it’s the closest liberals will go to admitting why they want to ban guns.

But Obama said it better, if you can trust Jeffrey Goldberg of Bloomberg News. “Israel doesn’t know what its own best interests are,” he says Obama said, not even bothering to get angry after Prime Minister Netanyahu announced plans for new housing in Yerushalayim last month.

Israel doesn’t know what’s best for them, so Harvard law professor Obama needs to step in and inform them that “building settlements” is no good for Johnny. Americans obviously don’t know what’s best for them, so they voted for Obama. That same ignorance is now leading them to cling to their guns, so for their benefit, Obama set out a 23-step plan to overcome their addiction, mostly by executive order.

But what about the kids? The shootings? The mass murders? Don’t you care about them?

Sure I do. Like one New York state legislator told me after voting for the gun-control bill this week, “it won’t make a difference, but that’s not a reason not to vote yes.”

The United States has the second-amendment right that the average citizen may bear arms. Messing with that right is unconstitutional, as much as forcing religious people to go against their beliefs — oops, not a good metaphor with this president. Granted, very few countries have this right. Granted, the founding fathers, living the Musket Age, did not mean assault weapons. So change the Constitution.

If Obama believes, as he said yesterday, that the American public is with him on this, go introduce a bill in 34 state legislatures — he would even get to appoint a gun czar for this — get the necessary majorities in both houses of Congress, and there you go. The kids will be protected and no more mass murders. We’ll be as safe as New Zealand.

But I’m not worried at all about the guns in America. I worry more about the Chicago street fighter with a single WWII-era rifle than a Vanderbilt living in the Hamptons with a collection of dozens of modern weaponry that would do the army proud.

In truth, Orthodox Jews should be the most up in arms against this power grab. As Gerald Ford put it, “A government big enough to give you everything you want is strong enough to take everything you have.” A government that can ban guns for alleged safety reasons can also ban bris milah and mikvaos on health grounds.

Mayor Bloomberg is Exhibit A in this lesson. All those Jewish organizations supporting Obama better be careful he does not become Exhibit B.

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