Surrendering the Constitutional high ground

I was planning to write about something else today (will probably get to it later), but I’ve decided that a couple comments left in response to an earlier post merit a more thorough response than is practical in comments. In that post, I castigated the NRA for criticizing Holder for his opposition to “Project Exile.”

In other words, the NRA is opposed (quietly and politely) to Holder not only for his zeal for so-called “gun control,” but for his opposition to their brand of “gun control”–and who cares about the utter lack of any Constitutional justification for any federal gun laws, even without the Second Amendment?

I actually haven’t seen anyone try to argue with my claim that federal gun laws are unconstitutional not only because of the Second Amendment, but also because “gun control” is nowhere listed as one of the federal government’s enumerated powers (in other words, I can make my argument without yelling “SNBI!” at anyone). For example:

In principle, I agree with you the federal government doesn’t have any constitutional power to regulate possession of firearms by anybody. But if you go onto Capitol Hill and suggest that as a serious policy position you’ll get laughed out of every Congressional and Senate office you’re invited into.

Project Exile is one of those things I don’t really like either, because I don’t believe the federal government ought to be exercising police powers. But the Supreme Court disagrees with us on this, and so do both other branches of government. You have to approach things from that reality.

There’s more, but most of the gist of it is summed up in those two paragraphs. As I read it, Sebastian acknowledges that all federal gun control laws are unconstitutional, but that’s (apparently) a losing argument, hence the NRA’s approach of trying to preempt additional gun laws by calling for enforcement of the (unconstitutional) ones already in place.

Here’s another example.

You were, perhaps, expecting the NRA to PRAISE Holder for opposing the program that they support?

I can understand your opposition to “project exile” and I agree with it to a certain extent; but your post here seems to be making the rather silly contention that the NRA shouldn’t have mentioned it because YOU don’t support it.

Believe it or not, I don’t have such a high opinion of myself that I think what I support (or not) should matter to the NRA. Whether I like “Project Exile,” or not, is irrelevant. What matters is that the Constitution doesn’t like it.

Every time the NRA advocates “enforcing existing gun laws,” they surrender the Constitutional high ground. How can they, with a straight face, argue that the Constitution prohibits all federal gun laws, except the ones that they endorse? How does that differ from rank hypocrisy? Finally, how dare they demand that the citizen disarmament advocates have any more respect for the Constitution than they do themselves?

If that’s an example of the (dare I say it?) pragmatic approach, I’ll stick to tilting at windmills.

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One Response to “Surrendering the Constitutional high ground”

  1. Snowflakes in Hell » Blog Archive » The High Ground Says:

    […] Regarding NRA’s letter to Congress opposing the nomination, which mentioned Project Exile, he had this to say: Every time the NRA advocates “enforcing existing gun laws,” they surrender the Constitutional […]

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