Anyone alive when President John F. Kennedy was killed knows that “terrible” doesn’t even come close to describing the soul wrenching nature of such an event. Trump was alive then, however, but maybe he wasn’t like everyone else in America.
Trump’s statement reveals a deep disdain for gun owners. To suggest that they would exercise “self-help” to prevent appointment of what can only be construed as “liberal judges” is a slander and libel.
I got to know my late Father-in-Law, Paul, in duck blinds on the salt marshes behind Moffatt Field in the Bay Area. He taught me how to use a duck call, care for a gun, and aim at birds flying overhead. Though the latter exercise was, largely, a failure, we bonded and I married one of his beautiful daughters.
Paul, a combat veteran who fought in the Pacific, was a patriot. He was, also, a staunch Republican who wrung his hands over more than one Supreme Court decision. Despite this, even the faintest intimation that he would use a gun against his own government to change the course of law is so repugnant that, if he could, he’d hasten the Resurrection, himself, to dispel any such thoughts in person. Yet, Donald Trump has suggested that he, and millions like him, are capable of committing the greatest of all sins against democracy because they support the 2nd Amendment.
Statistics show that there are enough guns, already, in circulation to arm every man, woman, and child in America. The 2nd Amendment isn’t even remotely threatened and statements that it’s in danger are balderdash. The issue is being politically exploited by both sides but is, really, a red herring. Whether military grade weapons should be available at the corner gun shop is a no-brainer, yet, that’s what’s driving the emotions.
The government can’t come door-to-door and demand that citizens surrender their weapons. It’s about as realistic as catching every illegal alien, visa violator, or anchor baby and sending him or her back home. Trump insulted everyone with his reckless speech. The Constitution isn’t like a cafeteria where you get to pick the dishes you like and disregard the rest. You must abide by all of its parts.
Those who should be the most aggrieved by Trump’s latest inflammatory statements, however, are responsible gun owners, those men and women who would never think, even in joking way, that bloodshed is a way to influence government policy.
To even suggest that bullets are a possible remedy to loss of an election requires a reminder that in places where citizens bear arms against the government, that government, generally, shoots back and calls its opponents terrorists.
Paul would never vote for Mr. Trump.
Mike Malak is an attorney, writer and photographer. He lives in California.