Sunday, June 26, 2016

A Wake Up Call for Second Amendment Activists

This post is a wake up call for the second amendment activists in the state of New Jersey. You are doing it wrong. All your indignation at your rights being denied. Nobody cares. All your examples of successful self defense in other states - after all, if there were no guns, both criminal and victim would be fine.

All your rants about corrupt government not listening to "the voice of the people." You have it all wrong.

I discovered that when I visited my mother and was glancing through the local newsletter of her senior community. I came across this:

Think about it. This group, not associated with guns in any way, manages to get 387 signatures on a petition to expand background checks, ban assault weapons, and limit magazines. How many signatures can you get to fix background checks, remove the assault weapons ban and allow standard capacity magazines? How many people don't even want to talk to you because you are "those gun people?"

Your liberal representatives aren't ignoring "the voice of the people" - they are listening. When you have the same 50 names over and over protesting each new gun law, there are thousands coming in to preserve or tighten NJ gun laws. You can show up at hearings all you want, but nobody cares when there are piles of people happy with the laws they are enacting.

You've lost every legislative battle head to head. You fizzled out on the Sweeney campaign. You are getting nowhere with the public on right to carry. Maybe it's time to look at what works instead of beating your head against the same wall. Here's a modest proposal.

1) No gun groups - you have no credibility trying to get Joe and Jane NJ to sign any petition that says NRA, NJ2AS, NJ2AR, ANJRPC, You-name-it-RPC, CNJFO or anything associated with "gun". Stick with things like "Citizens for a safer New Jersey" or the mysterious "Justifiable Need."

2) No guns - almost everyone knows at least one person who should not have access to a firearm. Most people know someone who has committed or attempted suicide. Suggesting that we need more guns or more access to guns or better guns, etc. does not work for these people.

3) No violence - don't make the issue "my rights" or even "self defense." Make the issue "justice" and "safety - things people can all agree they want.

4) Lie - look at the notice above. "This survey was conducted because of the markedly increased gun violence occurring in the United States." That's a bald-faced lie, with gun violence at an all time low in the United States. And yet, it was what people wanted to hear, and what they believe. Pick something that's subjective, and not easily quantifiable or verifiable and run with it.

5) Get sympathy. The only gun issues that the public has supported you on were the case of Shaneen Allen and Brian Fletcher. Why? Not because they cared about them having gun rights, but because they were "unjustly" imprisoned. Nobody wants to see children go without a parent, even if they don't like that the parent had a gun. And in each case, it seemed that the gun was needed (Allen because she had been mugged, Fletcher because he worked nights in dangerous neighborhoods).

So here's my modest proposal. If you want an issue that will actually get you traction (and signatures), how about presenting all the cases of people "wrongly persecuted" for guns, like Allen, Fletcher, Brian Aitken, Gordon Van Gilder, etc. and using them (and the thousands of cases like theirs) to push for a bill to add the words "for the commission of a violent crime" to every New Jersey gun restriction.

Think about it - nobody wants to see good people in jail for no good reason. Nobody wants to spend millions in taxpayer money arresting, prosecuting, and housing and feeding these people. Nobody want to see families and careers destroyed when no crime was ever intended or committed. Furthermore, not even the leftiest leftie can claim that this weakens laws to prosecute criminals in the slightest.

So find a legislator who will introduce the bill if you get support. Then get the support. Go hit the streets, run media campaigns, do all the things you need to do to get the signatures. This is actually something that will succeed because it is 100% non-controversial.

Or you can sit on your butts and whine about how you want to leave New Jersey because you can't have any rights. Up to you.


Post a Comment