Everyday Americans who have never thought seriously about buying firearms to protect themselves and their families are now mulling the prospect in the wake of the terrorist shootings in San Bernardino, Calif., Paris and elsewhere.
“I’m a veteran. I know how to use a gun. I’m considering buying a gun to protect my family,” a Vietnam veteran, baby boomer and father of four in New York told LifeZette over the weekend. “Acts of terror are happening anywhere — concerts, cafes, workplaces, even at a Christmas party. Why should I or my family be sitting ducks? It’s ridiculous. If someone opens fire, I want to be able to fend them off no matter what the probability is.”
Massachusetts small business owner Christy Roberts — a Democrat who voted for Obama — told LifeZette the same. “I never would have imagined this, but I’m planning on taking a class and getting my gun license just in case. In today’s world, I just believe it’s the smart thing to do.”
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Americans are worried, now more than ever, that guns may soon be far more difficult to obtain under the Obama administration, as well as under any future Democratic administration, should that occur in 2017.
“I’m doing it now because there may be a time soon when I won’t be allowed to get a gun as the laws tighten up,” Roberts said. “It’s my right as a citizen to have a gun for safety.”
An FBI report last week said more Americans than ever are buying guns, or are thinking about it. The agency said it processed more than 185,000 background checks — about two per second — on Black Friday alone. That’s a 5 percent increase over Black Friday sales last year, and that doesn’t include sales through dealers not controlled by the federal government.
Hardworking, law-abiding Americans who want to protect their families from violent acts, however, are facing nonsensical rhetoric from rigid gun law supporters, such as Coppin State University writing professor D. Watkins, who posited in Salon: “I believe that being shot should be a requirement for gun ownership in America. It’s very simple. You need to have guns, like taking selfies with pistols, can’t live without it? Then take a bullet and you will be granted the right to purchase the firearm of your choice.”
Watkins, a liberal media darling, also compared gun-rights supporters to slave owners: “Gun praisers are just like the people who were in favor of slavery back in the day — the elite, lazy and ignorant.”
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What nonsense, given this reality: “We are now investigating these horrific acts (in San Bernardino) as an act of terror,” the FBI said on Friday. ISIS said its group “inspired” the attacks. Even President Obama in a White House address on Sunday said as much, uttering for the first time the word “terror” in connection with the California shootings.
The San Bernardino massacre last week killed 14 innocent Americans and injured 21. A pair of heavily armed radical Islamics, husband and wife Syed Farook and Tashfeen Malik, stormed the Inland Regional Center on an ordinary workday and shot as many people as possible until police took them out. The couple had extensively plotted their act of terror and built weapons inside their apartment, where they were also raising a young daughter.
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The murderous Malik, born in Pakistan, had traveled here from Saudi Arabia, married Farook in August 2014 and had a baby with her spouse. She came to the U.S. on a K-1 visa, known as the fiancé visa.
“The danger of Islamic supremacists grows every year,” Newt Gingrich, a former speaker of the House, said on Fox News over the weekend. “What happened in California was an act of war, an attack on America by people who want to destroy our way of life.”
Is it any wonder Americans across the country are citing defense of life and liberty as granted them under the Constitution and turning thought to action?
“Terrorists can strike anywhere and at any time, giving them a huge strategic advantage,” John R. Lott, president of the Crime Prevention Research Center, told LifeZette on Sunday. “Unfortunately, too many politicians around the world refuse to admit this.”
“It’s handguns and long guns,” Mike Reber of Arizona Arms in Chandler, Ariz., said about the “noticeable and steady” increase in gun purchases at his store and online. “It’s a lot of women buying guns. It’s husbands bringing their wives to buy guns. They don’t want to be sitting ducks in a pond,” he told the New York Times.
The bitter disagreement between Second Amendment supporters and the Left is escalating, as liberals point to the number of guns on the streets as the over-arching reason for the rise in violence. Gun-rights advocates believe that multiple factors including radicalized homegrown terrorists, an increase in illegal immigrants, and the need for better mental health care and screening are far more to the point.
Obama, in part, blames lawmakers supportive of Second Amendment rights for the rise in violence. After last week’s act of terror, Obama said in his weekly radio address on Saturday, “We know that the killers in San Bernardino used military-style assault weapons — weapons of war — to kill as many people as they could. It’s another tragic reminder that here in America it’s way too easy for dangerous people to get their hands on a gun.”
He added, “So I’m calling on Congress to close this loophole, now. We may not be able to prevent every tragedy, but — at a bare minimum — we shouldn’t be making it so easy for potential terrorists or criminals to get their hands on a gun that they could use against Americans.”
When Obama gave a speech in Paris last month, near the site of the Nov. 13 terrorist attacks in the French capital, he called for urgent action against a challenge he suggested was greater than the fight against terrorism: “The growing threat of climate change could define the contours of this century more dramatically than any other.”
But increasingly, Americans are ignoring such empty rhetoric and taking a stand, by asserting their constitutional rights and protecting themselves. They’re completing the necessary paperwork and training and putting a gun in their hands for protection, for defense, and for peace of mind — something the U.S. government is not providing.
“Police and soldiers in uniform have an extremely difficult job, and should be thanked for being willing to risk their own safety and stand out in public in uniform to guard Americans,” Lott said. “But more needs to be done. Over 5 percent of adult Americans have a concealed handgun permit. We can only hope that many more Americans take responsibility for the safety of themselves and their families.”