When it comes to a rational discussion of our rights as Americans, the left readily relies upon scare tactics. Nowhere is this pattern more readily-identifiable than with the Second Amendment. In this discussion, the left routinely offers a rigged choice. Examples include:
“Are you for the continued legalization of ‘assault weapons?’ Or do you hate children and want to see them mowed-down?” (As if one must be for one or the other.)
“Why do you need an ‘assault weapon’ to hunt deer?” (As if the Second Amendment is a constitutional protection of hunting instruments.)
“What gives you the right to endanger our lives by carrying a gun in public?” (As if guns, themselves, are the instruments of carnage and not the shooters.)
Though Texas is largely thought to be conservative, many were shocked to discover that the entirety of the Second Amendment’s applications just recently came to the Lone Star State. After years of work on the part of open-carry activists, the open carrying of pistols became legal in the state in January.
Naturally, this prompted the usual outcry by liberal hysterics.
El Paso Diocese Chancellor Patricia Fierro came out strong against the legislation, claiming,
“We’ve always talked about having a safe environment [in church],” Fierro told ThinkProgress. “We just thought that most of our parishioners would want to go to mass without fear that the person next to them is carrying a gun.”
Shannon Watts, the “frontman” for Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, the Michael Bloomberg- funded astroturf group dedicated to promoting the eradication of the Second Amendment as a “common sense” measure, came-out against the entire concept of open-carrying, declaring that “extremists” (ie: patriots) are endangering the lives of countless citizens by parading around with guns.
In an op-ed for the Huffington Post, Watts raved,
Thanks to the gun lobby’s insidious and formerly unchecked influence in our state legislatures, open carry is legal in more than 40 states. And in a majority of those states, it’s perfectly legal to open carry a long gun with absolutely no training, permitting, or even a minimum age requirement.
Add to that cocktail of crazy the fact that our lax federal gun laws allow criminals and other dangerous people to easily access firearms. Given that millions of guns each year are sold without a criminal background check, there is no way to know if a person who is openly carrying a semiautomatic rifle is a responsible gun owner, or if that person is a threat to moms and our children…
This extremism is dangerous and, not surprisingly, encouraged by NRA leaders given their support and continued push for open carry expansion. For decades, the NRA has attempted to normalize behaviors that are unsafe, and expanding open carry is simply an attempt by the gun lobby to make it acceptable for anyone to openly carry guns anywhere.
Nowhere in Watts’ hysterical and fear-based diatribe did she even attempt to address a harrowing truth: criminals do not care what the law states. While she may be alarmed to see a man in the grocery store with a Glock, the fact is that she is no more vulnerable to the whims of a pistol-wielding criminal who has come to rob the place. And, if we’re being honest, she is actually in less danger as any halfway-competent criminal would refrain from robbing a store where law-abiding customers are roaming the aisles with guns strapped to their hips.
This kind of rhetoric is nothing new; in 1993, as Congress considered a federal ban on weapons deemed to be arbitrarily considered to be “assault weapons,” the “think of the children” crowd emerged to insist that without the ban, the streets would run red with the blood of the innocent.
After ten years without any measurable difference in crime, the ban was allowed to expire as the same hysterics proclaimed that letting the ban expire is akin to letting loose the dam of crazed maniacs itching to kill us all.
Unsurprisingly, the ban was lifted and the wave of violence the hysterics promised never came. That was 12 years ago.
Now, over a month after open-carry became legal in Texas, how has the fear-mongerers’ predictions fared?
“We do not have anything interesting to report,” Cpl. Tracey Knight of the Fort Worth Police Department said to a local newspaper, the Star-Telegram. “Two calls so far, no issues. We have no concerns and we have had no problems.”
A Fox News report details the complete lack of negative consequences from this new law.
Critics believed a public unaccustomed to seeing guns carried openly would call police out of fear. But no such complaints were filed in January in Tarrant County, where Fort Worth is the county seat.
“I said before this became law that I thought it was going to be much ado about nothing but I didn’t know it was going to be this much nothing,” Tarrant Sheriff Dee Anderson told the Star-Telegram.
Other counties in the Lone Star State have reported few, if any, complaints related to the law in the first month of 2016.
In Bastrop County, despite anticipation that there would be a flood of 911 calls, none were logged the first weekend that the law went into effect.
Contrary to widespread perception, Texas’ gun laws have long been among the strictest in the nation. Carrying handguns was first restricted by local legislature in 1871. In 1995, the law was changed to allow for concealed carry permits. The new, open-carry law was passed last year.
According to figures from the Texas Department of Public Safety, only 3.4 percent of the state’s 27 million residents have any sort of license to carry a firearm. While the new law allows licensed owners to openly display their weapons, it also allows private businesses to implement their own bans.
Granted, it has not been very long since the law came into effect, but all around the Lone Star State, the predictions have fallen short. The left pretended that police would be called for every shopper with a gun and that resources would be strained. They pretended that maniacs with guns would be shooting-it-out at the local Kroger’s.
Heck, the radical anti-Second Amendment group Coalition to stop Gun Violence even encouraged followers to “SWAT” legal gun owners by calling 911 to report a gunman.
What happened when Texas embraced the enlightenment thinking of the Second Amendment was what always happens when the anti-gun crowd claims that the sky is falling: nothing.