Compromise At What Cost?
by Jim Shepherd
With the United States Senate now moving toward the eventual passage of legislation that is more anti-gun owners than anti-crime, anti-gun legislators and the media are starting to celebrate another baby-step toward their ultimate goal: disarmament of the private citizen. That sounds fatalistic, but even as New York Governor Cuomo calls proposed compromise legislation a "sell-out to the gun lobby" he uses the same breath to say it's "better than nothing."
Better than nothing is political shorthand for: "we'll get 'em all next time." With a number of allegedly pro-2A Senators more concerned at being called mean-spirited than principled, they may be right. And once again, we find ourselves at a societal tipping point. This time it's "the gun issue". Last week it was gay rights. Next week, who knows?
Washington really isn't where the pitched "gun battles" are being fought. Money and lobbying muscle is generally enough to tone down most radical proposals. That's why Dianne Feinstein, Chuck Schumer, et al, remain so valuable. They play to the extreme edge as their "moderate" cohorts work their incremental magic, all the while carping about not "getting enough". They know that in Washington, any win, however small, goes down in the books as a "W".
Pitched battles are being fought at lower government levels. In city halls and county courthouses, social pressure is used as a velvet hammer to pound those who disagree with "reasonable restrictions" into submission.
We are rapidly being divided into two nations. The question remaining is which one is the "have" nation and which is the "have-not". That depends on your definition of what an "ideal America" would look like.
To gun supporters, "have" is defined by two essential ideas: the right to keep and bear arms and the right to work hard and enjoy (guilt-free) your accomplishments.
To anti-gun proponents, "have" means "having" gun-free zones, defenseless senior citizens and the apparent peace of mind that comes from having what your see as a moral high ground. It doesn't matter that you're being mugged, maimed or murdered by a criminal who could give a rat's patoot about any law that says guns are a no-no. You know you're right because the guns cause crime, right?
The final tipping point in this escalating ideological battle may be when pro-gun states have all the former companies who have given up on their former homes and gone to locales where they're wanted.
At that point, the gun-unfriendly areas will have the moral high ground while their elected officials pass increasingly unconstitutional, unduly restrictive laws. They might think that will bring them happiness, but it wont.
Their intransigence toward the Second Amendment may be the most demonstrative sign of a total reversal of the sociological and economic map that reflected the United States before the Civil War.
Today, young, aspiring blacks are moving back to the states their ancestors abandoned in hopes of a better life. The rust-belt states can't give them the kind of jobs and quality of their forefathers left the south to find. The south has assumed the role of independent economic engine as the north and east have become increasingly more dependent.
Today, the northeast and the far west (the Left Coast to many) are reaping the harvest of progressive social programs that discouraged excellence and rewarded mediocrity. And they're increasingly angry at anyone who might believe the engines that run this country are ingenuity, imagination and productivity, not social programs, political correctness and taxing the successful. Unfortunately, the continued reverse migration of achievers leaves behind social programs and no revenue to pay for them.
The formerly rural areas of the south and the west are setting the example of how business gets done while their "intellectually superior" neighbors to the north and east sink under collapsing infrastructures, shrinking tax bases and the ugly truth that fewer people are producing while more expect to live off the increasingly-diminishing returns.
At Browning (above), workers are preparing to rollout new lines of clothing that says "practical" before "tactical. At Barnes Bullets, (below) workers are making bullets and finished ammunition as fast as their equipment can run. Unfortunately, they tell us that it's still not fast enough to bring much relief to consumers frantically looking for ammo and components. Jim Shepherd photos.
The rumors of an accelerating exodus of firearms-related companies from Connecticut may- eventually- deliver a wakeup call. Companies that have fed and clothed that area, almost since the nation's founding, are leaving. Instead of squandering millions fighting legislation, they're going where governments welcome their businesses, people line up to apply for their jobs, and a free market exists for their products.
And who could blame them? On Tuesday, I visited Browning's corporate offices and saw an energetic company preparing new products for a growing consumer base. On Wednesday, I watched (enviously) as the people at Barnes packed pallets of bullets and finished ammunition for delivery to a consumer base that, literally, can't get enough of their products.
That's a big change from recent trips through the northeast where an increasing number of factories, office parks and storefronts are advertising available space.
If the migration from the gun-unfriendly states continues (and I'm hearing it will) there may be a question facing politicians who have rammed through legislation because they felt a need to "do something": who do I blame when my "doing something" was the wrong thing?
They'll be hard pressed to blame the pro-gun states, but you can bet they'll try.
Republished from The Outdoor Wire.