The history of gun control, part 3

By Sandy Froman

Sadly, modern history is full of instances where the anti-gun left tries to capitalize on tragedy and fear to push their agenda. Sometimes the push is immediate, while at other times they lay in wait gathering strength until an opportune time, like the evil Lord Voldemort in the Harry Potter novels.

Those who support the Bill of Rights need to be aware of these tactics so we can fight to protect our civil liberties when terrible events unfold.

One such event happened on March 30, 1981.

The anti-gun left had hit a brick wall in the 1970s. Ever since Harlon Carter had taken the reins as CEO of the NRA in 1977, re-establishing the NRA's political lobbying arm and mobilizing a national grass-roots opposition campaign to anti-gun legislation, gun control efforts had virtually stopped dead in their tracks. It took the anti-gun left several years to retool their political machine to try to combat the organized efforts of the NRA to protect the right to keep and bear arms.

In fact, the only significant defeat for pro-Second Amendment forces in the 1970s was the confirmation of Abner Mikva as a federal appeals judge to the D.C. Circuit. Rep. Mikva was a congressman from Illinois and one of the leading gun control advocates in America. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit is regarded as the second-most important court in the nation. President Jimmy Carter nominated Mikva to the D.C. Circuit. Though the NRA and gun rights community strongly opposed the nomination, it had no experience with judicial appointments, and a Democrat-controlled Senate confirmed Mikva to the court, where he served until 1994. Aside from that, there had been no major victories for the anti-gun crowd.

That changed just two months into the Reagan presidency.

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Related Stories:
The history of gun control, part 1

The history of gun control, part 2

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