March 9, 2018

Since the tragic school shooting in Florida last month, gun control has been at the forefront of legislative discussions. Democrats are claiming that they are taking the “moral high ground” by wanting restrictive gun laws to keep our children safe. As they pull at the heartstrings of parents and students, they are leaving out a huge component: the truth.

Restricting gun laws devalues our freedoms. It is the government’s responsibility to presume that you are innocent until proven guilty. However, the current rhetoric is trying to turn that upside down. When laws are created that redefine our right to bear arms, the government is presuming that you are not fit enough to access guns until you prove that you are worthy. This goes against the basic freedoms that our country was founded upon.

Focusing on mental health is not a fix-all. Mental health is a serious issue that needs attention, but an increase in psychiatric evaluations can be very dangerous. Many of the previous school shooters have been on prescription psychiatric drugs. Some of the side-effects can invoke violence to the individual or to others. This is not a risk that we want to take with our children.

Restricting gun laws perpetuates the destruction of the family unit. School shootings have nothing to do with guns themselves. The common thread of these shooters has been fatherlessness. Fathers lead an example of how masculinity can be channeled. When that is not present, the confusion and anger results in extreme methods. There are many other legislative endeavors to encourage healthy families that we can focus on.

Currently, there are a few ways that gun control may sneak through Congress. Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) introduced the Fix NICS Act (S. 2135) which tightens up the National Instant Criminal Background Check System. However, this bill does not allow some individuals due process before being listed in this database. The same concerns loom over Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) bill, the Terrorist Firearms Prevention Act (S.2458) nicknamed “No Fly, No Buy.” This language or other gun control measures may pop up in the upcoming budget fight. With mixed signals from the President, we are unsure what he is willing to sign into law.

Other ideas in a positive light have included the allowing of teachers to arm themselves while at school. Schools are currently gun-free zones. By repealing those zones, a gun-carrier could stop an attack before many are harmed. We saw this happen during shootings in Texas and South Carolina. In addition, our children should be educated on why gun rights are important and why the alternatives will not work. Many students will head to Washington, DC this month for the “March for Our Lives.” This shows you that liberals are leading a culture war on our Constitutional rights.

Eagle Forum is working with allied organizations and Members of Congress to protect our Second Amendment rights. We will keep you informed on this issue as discussions are underway.