The following FAQs are taken from the University of Colorado at Boulder’s Weapons on Campus page maintained by CU Boulder’s Police Department. They are very well organization and exceptionally well-written. I am preserving them here as a prime example of How It’s Done.
Yesterday I received yet another telemarketing call. My main phone line is unlisted, on the Do Not Call Registry, and I NEVER give it out for any reason whatsoever. Unlike postal service, where someone else buys the stamp, I pay for my own phone line. It’s my line, no one else’s. Period.
Yet the spammers and scammers continue to violate my privacy, even with both community and personal black lists. Heck, I turn off the ringers before I go to bed just so I can sleep!
The rising tide of red flag laws does not bode well for the United States of America. Not only are they fraught with many potential avenues of failure and abuse, they’re also highly ineffectual, stopping less than 1/10th of 1% of their intended targets — a statistically and absurdly tiny fraction of the problem.
For the first time in many years, I’m at a loss for world. These proposals and the laws that have made the books are so ridiculously, unbelievably mind-bogglingly STUPID that I don’t know where to begin.
So, let’s begin at the beginning, with our United States Constitution. Here’s a couple of key points:
– The States were already in power at the time they agreed to join the Union. They already had powers. They still do.
– The Constitution specifically delineated a few key powers to the federal government and normalized relations between the States, primarily in the areas of commerce and common defense.
– Just in case anyone forgot that the people and the States retain the lion’s share of authority, our Founding Fathers included Amendments IX and X in our Bill of Rights:
Amendment IX: The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.
Amendment X: The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.
– Amendments to the Constitution become integral parts of the Constitution itself. As the Constitution itself declares in Article. V., “shall be valid to all Intents and Purposes, as Part of this Constitution.”
– Between December 7, 1787, and May 29, 1790, all thirteen states ratified the Constitution.
-Subsequently, whenever a territory has applied to become a State, they do so with the full knowledge of and consent to the U.S. Constitution.
– One of the rights enumerated in the Bill of Rights, proposed in 1789 and duly ratified by the states on December 15, 1791, is “the right of the people to keep and bear arms.” Our Founding Fathers were so adamant about protecting this right they added an absolute: “shall not be infringed.” Moreover, this isn’t merely about restricting Congress from passing laws, as stated in the First Amendment. Rather, it applies to the states, as well, and on December 15, 1791, all United States at the time become party to it, whereas all subsequent States became party to it when they applied for statehood.
WHERE WE ARE NOW
Sadly, instead of focusing on legitimate, science-based policing, these red flag laws throw that science out the window, criminalizing gun ownership itself, in a flagrant and very dangerous violation of the “shall not be infringed” clause of the Second Amendment i.e. the U.S. Constitution.
Despite the fact that an article entitled, “Antidepressants Are A Prescription for Mass Shootings” first appeared in November of 2012, five years ago, as part of CCHR* Florida’s efforts, now we have a shooter, Nikolas Cruz, with a 7-year history of calls to 911, FBI involvement, and repeated evaluations by licensed therapists, all of whom deemed him not to be a threat. Here’s another salient article.
The fact they were all wrong is undeniable.
I’m a data/systems analyst. In 2012, shortly after the Newton shooting, I located, downloaded, and began analyzing a very detailed set of data on mass shootings between 1981 and 2011. That’s 30 years of mass shootings.
There are only two substantial conclusions one can draw from the data:
1. Even the best psychological practitioners cannot successfully identify everyone who might prove harmful to themselves and others. Many mass shooters had been evaluated by psychologists or trained/licensed therapists who failed to identify them as a threat. Deeming everyone who passes through their doors as a threat, however, is not the answer. Less than 1 out of 10,000 subjects evaluated for potential harm, yet dismissed as non-harmful, ever go on to engage in a mass shooting. You cannot deprive the other 9,999 (actually, a lot more) of their own rights.
2. So-called “gun-free” zones occupy less than 10% of the physical space frequented by the general public, yet are where more than 80% of all mass shootings occur. In fact, more than one mass shooter has confessed they targeted a gun-free zone precisely because it was a gun-free zone so as to minimize the likelihood anyone would be armed and could shoot back.
Based upon the indisputable facts communicated by the objective data itself, along with 27 years of military and civilian education and experience in the use of firearms, here are my recommendations:
1. Stop designating areas as “gun-free” zones. Not only is that a wide open invitation to mass shooters, but it also denies the lawful general public their Constitutional right to defend themselves. Given the undeniably clear data and findings, the so-called “gun-free” zones are pathetically stupid. Stop designating zones as “gun-free.”
2. For areas where you really do not want firearms, such as K-12 schools, courtrooms and prisons, authorities bear the responsibility of protecting those who must be there. Secure the physical facility from unauthorized entry. Employ well-trained armed guards to stop unlawful armed intruders. Single point of access. Controlled entry. We do a very good job of this with courtrooms and prisons. Some municipalities do a very good job of this with schools. Take heed. Learn. Do. Protect our kids.
3. For more adult areas like malls and movie theaters, stop preventing law-abiding adults from defending themselves. Law-abiding citizens use firearms somewhere between 650,000 to 800,000 times each and every year to defend themselves against violent crime, usually without having to fire a shot. I’ve been involved in three such incidents. No shots fired, but the attack was stopped. In fact, because armed, law-abiding citizens are not cops, they invariably hold their fire until it becomes absolutely necessary to stop the attack. Error rates are only 2% for armed citizens, but 11% for law enforcement officers. Thus, disarming law abiding citizens is pathetically stupid.
4. Don’t touch the current psychological evaluation programs in place. Although it’s not an exact science, they do a very good job, with a very low error rate, in terms of identifying those who are a threat to themselves and others. Trying to monkey with that from a legislative perspective would be a pathetically foolish thing to do.
5. Stop politicizing the issue. It’s not Trump’s fault. It’s not Hillary’s or Obama’s fault. It’s not the fault of Democrats or Republicans. In fact, most of the “solutions” proposed by politicians would greatly exacerbate the issue. Stop it. Knock it off. Do the research and find out what really works. Limits on magazines? Caliber? Number of guns one can buy during any given time period? Absolutely none of these foolhardy measures has ever stopped a single mass shooting. What HAS stopped mass shootings is when either a law-abiding citizen or law enforcement officer at the scene SHOT the mass shooter before they could continue. Securing places where people who must attend are disarmed, like students in schools, is the best way to deter such shootings in the first place.
6. Stop the blitheringly idiotic headlines. Mainstream media bears a huge responsibility to print the truth, instead of sensationalism like, “No other country has these types of…” Phooey. I can name thirty countries off the top of my head where such shootings are far worse than they are here in the United States of America. Fact-checking is a basic yet critical responsibility of all journalists. Those who fail to check their facts make the problem much worse.
7. Investigate the relation between mass shootings and psychoactive drugs. When a mother of four on psychoactive drugs drowns all four kids in a bathtub as her very first indication she has any violent tendencies, it’s a statistical anomaly. When similar events, including mass shootings, are repeated thousands of times over thirty years, you’ve got a real problem, and the drugs are highly suspect.
Yes, mass shootings are a tragedy. Let’s not create further tragedy by resorting to knee-jerk gun control that has not nor will ever stop mass shootings and is likely to make them much worse by progressively disarming law-abiding citizens who can and do protect themselves and others. Instead, let’s secure certain facilities and respect the rights of all citizens to defend themselves in accordance with our Constitution.
*Citizens Commission on Human Rights
Furthermore, each justice or judge of the United States takes an additional oath commensurate with their special authority, specifically, the following oath or affirmation before performing the duties of his office:
“I, ___ ___, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will administer justice without respect to persons, and do equal right to the poor and to the rich, and that I will faithfully and impartially discharge and perform all the duties incumbent upon me as ___ under the Constitution and laws of the United States. So help me God.” – 28 U.S. Code § 453 – Oaths of justices and judges
Finally, the President of the United States of America:
“Before he enter on the Execution of his Office, he shall take the following Oath or Affirmation:—”I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.” – Article II, Section 1, Constitution for the United States of America
As to what all this means, how and why one’s adherence to one’s oath of office is the glue of loyalty which holds our nation together, merely type “oath of office” into the Search window on this website. 🙂
The short version, however, is that when everyone in a position of authority who takes an oath of office actually follows their oath of office, including taking the steps to ensure they know the U.S. Constitution through and through, as well as all application local, county, state, federal, and military law germain to their duty and position of responsibility, then you have a country that is united behind a single, common, purpose, standing firm on a 200+ year old foundation of law respected around the world.
There is no firmer nor finer place to be.