Arianna Baseman’s letter on gun control requires a response from someone who has personal knowledge on firearms and training. As a licensed firearm instructor, the author of the book “How to Select a Defensive Firearm,” and the founder of the Home Defense Foundation, I believe I can offer such a response.
Baseman claims it is “preposterous” that a person on “the no-fly list” can legally purchase a firearm. That list, however, is compiled in secret by government bureaucrats. They do not notify you that your name may be included nor do they offer you an opportunity to contest their decision beforehand. Their work is sloppy, incomplete and horribly inaccurate. The proof? Sen. Ted Kennedy’s name was on the list, as well as singer Cat Stevens and many others.
It is not “preposterous,” therefore, to oppose the forfeiture of a constitutional right, such as the right of free speech or the right to own a firearm, because a government bureaucrat has put your name on a list. I say that not only as a firearm instructor, but also as a retired attorney who has read the Constitution.
Baseman is correct when she says that nowadays people are “more and more likely” to be the victims of “terrorism or senseless acts of violence,” but she should have included two more crimes: intentional armed robbery and violent muggings. These happen many times every day. There is no way of knowing how often because many attacks are inaccurately reported or simply go unreported. How can these crimes be prevented? By putting the criminal’s name on a “Don’t Mug List”? By calling 911? By placing a teddy bear on the street where someone was attacked? I don’t think so. No, if a criminal is about to attack the only way to prevent that crime is to defend yourself.
That requires responsible firearm ownership and training.
Lastly, I agree wholeheartedly with Baseman when she says “enough is enough,” except that my version goes like this: “Enough passive acceptance of criminal activity. Enough revolving-door justice so that someone with a substantial criminal record is set free to shoot a medical student in the stomach, and then try to execute him. Enough attempts to restrict honest, law-abiding citizens from acquiring defensive firearms, and enough self-delusion that criminals who intentionally break the law will somehow follow a “New and Improved Gun Control Law.” Criminals do not comply with gun control laws. They never have and they never will.