Why The Democrats’ Sit-In On Guns Is Hypocritical


Shamelessly exploiting emotions without regard
to the dangerous consequences.

Written by Frank Miniter

The Democrats’ “sit in” on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives is built on a narrative that casts them as heroes for the people who want to pass “gun safety” laws, and the Republican leadership as so uncaring they won’t move to stop domestic terrorists from buying guns legally for fear this might anger the National Rifle Association.

This is a false narrative.

The deception begins with polls. A CNN/ORC poll conducted June 16-19, is a good example. Its asked participants if they “generally favor or oppose … preventing people who are on the U.S. government’s Terrorist Watchlist or no-fly list from owning guns”?

Given how this question is worded, it should be no surprise that 85% of respondents said they are in “favor” stopping terrorists from legally owning guns. Who can blame them? Any reasonable person must want law enforcement to investigate, watch and, when necessary, prevent possible terrorists from getting guns.

Notice it uses the word “prevent” not “ban” or “stop.” “Prevent” implies a more nuanced approach than the U.S. Government using secret (as they must be) black lists, like the “no-fly list,” to not just take away a person’s Second Amendment right to bear arms away, but also their Fifth Amendment right to due process under the law.

Actually, the 15% of the respondents who said they “oppose” … “preventing people who are on the U.S. government’s Terrorist Watchlist or no-fly list from owning guns,” likely knew this was a loaded question and then stubbornly refused to go along with the premise that the government should be able to take the U.S. Bill of Rights away from U.S. citizens without even having its power checked by the judicial branch.

CNN, and others, have since run with the narrative that 85% of the American public wants to give the U.S. government this power over them. Meanwhile, the media isn’t even reporting that giving the FBI this power is hardly necessary.

The FBI could simply watch to see if or when a person on its watch lists attempts to buy a gun. This should be easy, as the FBI also runs the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS). Actually, saying the FBI needs to be informed when someone who is (or has been) on one of its watch lists attempts to purchase a gun, is saying the FBI needs to tell itself when this happens. All they need is to require one part of the FBI to talk to another part of the FBI. The FBI can then legally delay the sale for the three business days. Certainly, three business days should be enough for FBI agents to find out what’s going on. If charges need to be brought or search warrants issued, then they should quickly go to the courts and make that happen. Time here, of course, is important, as a terrorist doesn’t have to wait a mandatory three business days to act.

This would keep our constitutional rights intact. It would also prevent possible terrorists from being informed by a failed background check that they are being watched.

Instead of reporting this side of the story, CNN and many other news outlets, are running with the false narrative that the NRA doesn’t care if terrorists can buy guns and that the American people is on the side of those who want to take away their constitutional rights.

The real shame here is that, without this media cover, the congressmen doing the sit in might just be forced to work across the aisle with Republicans (and the Democrats who stand behind the Second and Fifth Amendments), to pass bills that would strengthen NICS without trampling on our constitutional rights.

This article was originally posted at the Forbes.com blog.