Democrats have been waging a war on guns for decades.
Like other wars that feckless American “elites” have waged against inanimate objects (such as drugs) or military tactics (like terrorism), the war on guns will completely miss the mark.
The goal is supposedly about public safety.
Yet, of the roughly 81 million registered gun owners in the United States, hardly any of them—around 12 percent—have used their firearms to commit crimes. The vast majority of gun crime in America is done with illicit firearms, usually perpetrated by criminals.
So why is the Biden Administration intent on trying to make lawful gun ownership so hard? It isn’t about public safety at all.
In fact, it is clearly about control.
Did the 1994 Crime Bill Work?
Speaking at an anti-gun summit in Connecticut, President Biden stunned cynical audiences when he offered his most vociferous opposition to guns yet.
Using the 1,600 mass shootings that occurred since he was sworn in a mere 877 days ago, Biden made an impassioned plea to increase restrictions on gun ownership in the United States (this, as his own son, Hunter, was revealed to have illegally been in possession of a firearm).
I must first note that Biden and the anti-gun crew are making a specious argument outright. Consider that most gun violence researchers cannot even agree what constitutes mass shootings. The FBI, which Biden and others rely upon to support their calls for gun control, uses differing definitions and methods of data collection to define gun violence.
Although, it should be noted that even the FBI’s definition of mass shootings shows an astonishing low number—just 28—perpetrated in the United States in 2019.
Other researchers insist that mass shootings have not increased at all. These skeptics believe that any indication of increases in mass shootings are the result not of increased incidents, instead, they believe that differences in research methods are responsible for the apparent spike in mass shootings.
The forty-sixth president says he merely wants to return America to the days when his infamous “crime bill”(circa 1994) was enacted. The way that Biden and his supporters see things, gun crime went down in the United States when the Crime Bill was enacted (Congress allowed it to lapse in 2004).
In the president’s defense, in 2019, a group of trauma surgeons and injury epidemiologists conducted a long-range study in which they compared the decade before 1994-2004 and the decade thereafter to see if the so-called Crime Bill reduced gun violence in America.
The research shows that, in fact, overall gun violence was reduced in the decade that Biden’s infamous Crime Bill was in place. As one of the trauma surgeons involved in the 2019 study admitted, though, there is no way to prove that the Crime Bill—which included stringent restrictions on “assault style” weapons—was the cause of the reduction in violence during that period or if it was simply a correlation.
Nevertheless, gun control advocates must come to terms with some simple facts.
First, gun ownership is enshrined in our Constitution. Second, most gun owners in America are law-abiding citizens. Third, as you will see below, the purported scourge of mass shootings in America is not an epidemic at all. And fourth, most violent gun crime is perpetrated by criminals with illegally obtained firearms.
What’s the Obsession with Mass Shootings?
President Biden is coyly fixating on the tragedy of mass shootings as a pretext for cracking down on all gun ownership in the United States. While most gun crimes in the United States are done with illegally obtained firearms, around 77 percent of all mass shootings are conducted with legally purchased guns.
But this is a specific problem that requires a specific set of policy solutions that transcend the unconstitutional, ham-fisted Biden (non) solution of simply banning guns for everyone.
After all, according to a 2021 report from researchers from the University of California-Davis, of all the gun violence in the United States, only 0.2 percent were caused by mass shootings. Despite this fact, the media transfixes its coverage of gun violence not on the daily—far greater in number—gang-related gun crimes that occur in the major cities of America and are far more devastating to communities there (with firearms usually obtained illegally).
Why is the forty-sixth president spending so much of his time hectoring Americans about the supposed epidemic of mass shootings that occur in America, when it accounts for such a small amount of gun violence today?
Lacey Wallace, a criminal justice researcher who spends much time assessing gun violence in modern America, claims that suicides account for the bulk of gun deaths in the country. There is no serious movement in the political realm to rein this crisis in, though.
Suicides by guns can either be accidental or intentional. If they are accidental, the only thing one can do is increase better gun training for those who in possession of firearms. Intentional suicides with firearms, which are far greater in number than accidental suicides, usually stem from mental instability.
Sadly, whenever Republicans bring up the issue of mental illness related to gun violence, Democrats guffaw.
The reaction from Democrats to gun violence is strange. Their solution is akin to banning forks to better combat the obesity epidemic afflicting this country. The issue, as with so many problems afflicting our nation today, is a problem with the human soul, the fallen nature of Man.
The Democrats are making a political crisis out of mass shootings that amounts for 0.2 percent of gun-related deaths in this country. This is beyond disingenuous. Which, naturally, brings us back to the matter of control.
The Right Kind of Gun Violence
Suicides, as tragic as they are, simply aren’t sexy enough to get the media’s attention. Gang violence is sexier than suicides from a media perspective. But focusing on that kind of gun-related violence places more onus on law enforcement—as in, empowering law enforcement to get more proactive in policing at-risk communities (and no Democrat wants that).
Mass shootings, despite their statistical irregularity, give the media and their Democratic Party allies exactly what they need: jarring images of hateful shooters, carrying “assault-style” weapons, terrorizing their innocent victims (who, in many cases, are beautiful children).
It’s a made-to-order media frenzy of the kind that galvanizes grief-stricken normies into ceding over more of their God-given rights to an increasingly corrupt and power-hungry elite in Washington, D.C. This is the kind of grave-dancing that only the most craven political minds could engage in.
The political elite in this country are asking 81 million Americans to hand over their guns to the government to mitigate mass shootings, which account for less than a percent of all gun-related deaths!
There’s something more going on here than meets the eye.
And what about the far greater number of gun-related crimes committed with illegally obtained firearms?
Nothing—and I mean nothing—is being done by the Democrats to address that problem. Because, again, that’d require Democrats who control most of the major cities where that kind of crime occurs to give their police departments greater authority to enforce the laws and police at-risk communities.
They cannot have that because of racism…or something. So, better to deflect from that real problem and punish all the other, law-abiding gun owners in the country!
As a point of reference, those countries that have banned or seriously curtailed private gun ownership still have gun crimes. It’s just that these crimes are committed with illegally obtained firearms. Even in a country that supposedly “quelled” gun violence with a personal firearm ban, like the United Kingdom did in 1994, the same kind of gun violence with illegal firearms plaguing American cities today terrorizes British cities.
Clearly, there’s little efficacy to imposing a sweeping gun ban for law-abiding gun owners in the United States if the goal is to end gun-related violence. What the Democrats really want is to take away yet another constitutional freedom that about 45 percent of the American population enjoy.
The reason is simple (and I must repeat here): control.
A Matter of Control
I would argue Democrats have long wanted to rewrite the US Constitution to enhance the power of the central government. Because the Democrats believe that central government is a cure-all for America’s social and economic woes, they must remove any barriers to the growth of that central government.
A well-armed citizenry is potentially a grave threat to those ambitious social engineering plans. Therefore, the Second Amendment must be eradicated, and private gun ownership abolished—even if private gun owners have not been the cause of any major crime or public health threat.
This is not about protecting people. It’s about power—enhancing the bureaucrats and disempowering yours.
In a society, the people with the guns make the rules. The Framers of the Constitution understood that guns in the hands of private citizens was the ultimate check on tyranny. They were not concerned about public safety. Or even about symbols. The men who wrote our Constitution, who liberated us from the brutal yoke of a world-spanning empire, wanted to ensure that the same kind of tyranny they escaped from in 1776 could not be replicated by bureaucrats here in the United States.
The Democrats and their allies clearly desire to impose a statist tyranny upon the American people (just look at how quickly they forced COVID-19 lockdowns and mandates upon us). Removing gun ownership is a major step in achieving these totalitarian goals.
Joe Biden is just the most recent vessel seeking to impose this new, harsh order upon the once-free American citizenry.
The real question is: will the American people today accept this new form of brutal control? Or will they resist as their forefathers did?
I fear to know the answer, based on how readily we embraced COVID-19 lockdowns and vaccine mandates.
A 19FortyFive Senior Editor, Brandon J. Weichert is a former Congressional staffer and geopolitical analyst who is a contributor at The Washington Times, as well as at American Greatness and the Asia Times. He is the author of Winning Space: How America Remains a Superpower (Republic Book Publishers), Biohacked: China’s Race to Control Life (Encounter Books), and The Shadow War: Iran’s Quest for Supremacy (July 23). Weichert can be followed via Twitter @WeTheBrandon.