“Hell yes, we’re going to take your AR-15, your AK-47,” Democratic presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke shouted at Thursday night’s Democratic debate.
As the audience cheered the emphatic assertion that a President O’Rourke would take guns away from American citizens who have not committed any crime, O’Rourke promised, “We’re not going to allow it to be used against our fellow Americans anymore.”
For years, gun-control advocates have assured Americans that it is not their intention to confiscate the weapons held lawfully by United States citizens. But now, the mask is coming off, as O’Rourke and the rest of his Democratic presidential hopefuls apparently believe gun confiscation has now become popular. Former Vice President Joe Biden said, “Over 90 percent of the American people think we have to get assault weapons off the street — period. And we have to get buy-backs and get them out of their basements.” Times have changed, Biden argued, and now public opinion favors gun control.
In other words, constitutional rights exist at the pleasure of the majority.
All the Democratic presidential candidates favor more gun control, but O’Rourke is, so far, the most open in his intention to confiscate weapons from law-abiding Americans. All the Democrats favor a ban on what they call “assault weapons,” but O’Rourke promised to “take” them, were he to become president.
O’Rourke’s promise to confiscate guns came after moderator David Muir alluded to the recent mass shooting in El Paso, Texas, which O’Rourke represented in Congress before his loss in the U.S. Senate race to Republican incumbent Ted Cruz. O’Rourke had told an audience a few days ago in Charlottesville, Virginia, “Americans who own AR-15s, AK-47s, will have to sell them to the government. We’re not going to allow them to stay on our streets, to show up in our communities, to be used against us in our synagogues, our churches, our mosques, our Walmarts, our public places.”
Muir asked O’Rourke if that meant he was proposing to take away guns, and “how would this work?”
O’Rourke’s response was quite clear --- he plans to take away guns owned by law-abiding American citizens.
If it’s a weapon that was designed to kill people on a battlefield; if the high impact, high velocity round, when it hits your body, shreds everything inside of your body, because it was designed to do that, so that you would bleed to death on a battlefield and not be able to get up and kill one of our soldiers.
When we see that being used against children — and in Odessa, I met the mother of a 15-year-old girl who was shot by an AR-15, and that mother watched her bleed to death over the course of an hour because so many other people were shot by that AR-15 in Odessa and Midland, there weren’t enough ambulances to get to them in time — hell, yes, we’re going to take your AR-15, your AK-47. We’re not going to allow it to be used against our fellow Americans anymore.
When asked on MSNBC this morning about whether Americans would actually comply with his confiscation plan, O’Rourke said that he expected most Americans would comply with the law, if they were required to give up what O’Rourke called “weapons of war.” He said he would not conduct a door-to-door confiscation of weapons, but would work with police chiefs and Congress to develop a plan to take away the guns.
Citing a recent visit to a gun show in Arkansas, O’Rourke said that even people there who were buying and selling AR-15s and AK-47s favored confiscation of such weapons. “And you might be surprised, there was some common ground there, folks who said, ‘I would willingly give that up, cut it to pieces, I don’t need this weapon to hunt, to defend myself. It is a weapon of war.”
It is beyond surprising — it is not credible — that a person buying and selling such weapons would agree with O’Rourke on the issue, which raises the question as to why they are buying and selling them to begin with. It is also incredible that those involved in such transactions at a gun show would buy into the liberal mantra so often repeated by gun-grabbers like O’Rourke — that guns are just for hunting and self-defense.
James Madison did not put the Second Amendment into the Constitution to ensure private citizens can go hunting — as important as that might be to some. Self-defense certainly gets closer to the purpose of the Second Amendment, but it is no mystery as to Madison’s main goal with the Second Amendment, which was to provide a check on an out-of-control federal government. In The Federalist, No. 46, written several months earlier than he penned the Second Amendment, Madison said that Americans have “the advantage of being armed,” noting that the rulers of other nations “are afraid to trust the people with arms.”
Red flag laws, enhanced background checks, confiscation of just some weapons will not satisfy those whose ultimate desire is to totally disarm the American public, leaving them at the mercy of government officials who have a monopoly on guns.
Photo of Rep. Beto O'Rourke: AP Images