Welcome to Common Gunsense

I hope this blog will provoke some thoughtful reflection about the issue of guns and gun violence. I am passionate about the issue and would love to change some misperceptions and the culture of gun violence in America by sharing with readers words, photos, videos and clips from articles to promote common sense about gun issues. Many of you will agree with me- some will not. I am only one person but one among many who think it's time to do something about this national problem. The views expressed by me in this blog do not represent any group with which I am associated but are rather my own personal opinions and thoughts.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

The Second Amendment/ Black or White?

It's about time. Even Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has discovered that sometimes people go too far in defending the Second Amendment. Here is an article in the Huffington Post about a new political ad up against Republican candidate Sharron Angle. Harry Reid, himself a long time NRA member appeared with Wayne LaPierre recently at a new gun range in Nevada to prove his second amendment "creds". It's amazing and actually ridiculous to watch candidates twist themselves into pretzels to convince the NRA that they support the Second Amendment. A colleague of mine recently wrote a letter to the editor in her local paper which inspired me to think about this issue again from her perspective. So someone supports the Second Amendment. What does that mean? Does it mean that you support people getting shot or does it mean that you support the idea that people can have guns for self defense, hunting and shooting sports but not for criminals, mentally ill folks and domestic abusers? Does anyone ever say it that way? No. They only use the same lame rhetoric to get on the good side of the extremist leaders of the NRA. Never mind the victims and the plain fact that the majority of Americans may say they support guns for self defense and hunting, but really- not for bad people to kill others.

This is the extreme to which we have come in this country. Sharron Angle, candidate for the U.S. Senate, suggesting that "Second Amendment remedies" may be necessary to take care of those in office who disagree with her and the tea party folks who support her. What does that mean really? Does she actually think that it's O.K. for armed insurrection against the government? Does she actually believe it might be O.K. for someone who supports the second amendment to act on a "remedy" that includes shooting an elected leader? Dangerous talk. Even Harry Reid has discovered that these folks go too far. The narrator of his ad, Bill Ames, is a Republican and NRA member who recognizes that the Second Amendment talk can go too far: " "Sharron Angle goes way over the line," the narrator says. "It's crazy. But what she is actually talking about is armed resistance. Look I'm a member of the NRA and a Republican. But that kind of talk is dangerous and way too extreme."" 

I wonder if he realizes that the leaders of the NRA are not representing most of their members and they encourage this kind of rhetoric. Over and over they have ramped up the fear of gun confiscation and rights taken away by President Obama. It is not only irresponsible but potentially dangerous. I am heartened to see that Harry Reid himself has discovered that it is O.K. to challenge this hateful nonsense. And kudos to Bill Ames for coming forward to narrate this T.V. ad.  I hope others follow suit.

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