Scaring Our Fellow Americans Will Cost Us Our Rights
Article first appeared at Ammoland.com
United States – -(AmmoLand.com)- When it comes to using our First Amendment rights to protect our Second Amendment rights, there is one particular mistake that far too many Second Amendment supporters are making. This mistake could very well cost us our Second Amendment rights – and the hardest part is that those who are making the mistake can even be defiant about said mistake, even as it unintentionally harms the cause they are trying to defend.
At the start of the year, when I asked Second Amendment supporters whether they had accidentally helped Bloomberg, it touched nerves. But there is a reason this question had to be asked then, and a big part of that comes from understanding Bloomberg’s anti-Second Amendment group.
While Bloomberg’s willingness to drop lots of money – as much as $183 a vote for his third term as mayor of New York City according to the New York Times – is what he is well known for, all too often Second Amendment supporters don’t look deeper. That’s a mistake – it confuses the tactics he pursues with the overall strategy – and his objective. Bloomberg’s group relies on fear in order to get Americans to support massive infringements on our Second Amendment rights. It not only capitalizing on the fear that already exists among millions of our fellow Americans, it tries to stir up even more fear.
Now, Bloomberg was not the first to stir up fear – for that, we can look to the Violence Policy Center. What he did was provide the funding to enable anti-Second Amendment extremists to mass-market the fear. It was a brilliant move. When Americans can calmly and rationally look at the facts, they reject restrictions on Second Amendment rights.
However, all the facts and the historical background about Second Amendment issues are of little good when you are dealing with a mother who is freaked out about the possibility of a mass shooting at her child’s school. They want something done – immediately. Bloomberg, of course, has his anti-Second Amendment snake oil ready to go… and the freaked-out soccer mom has been conned into becoming a fierce opponent of our rights.
Of course, to close the sale, Bloomberg needs to have someone scary for the freaked-out soccer moms to oppose. This is where far too many Second Amendment supporters walk into the trap, sometimes with belligerently declaring their refusal to comply. The reasons why are simple: They don’t consider – or don’t care – about how their Second Amendment support comes across. They do not have solutions to present to a freaked-out soccer mom who wants some sort of concrete action to protect their kids. They use techniques that turn off potential supporters. Then, in an era of media double standards, they wonder why we are losing ground.
Worse, self-appointed Second Amendment commissars compound the problem by assuring them that it’s not their fault that new anti-Second Amendment legislation passed, or that anti-Second Amendment extremists are now in office – the real fault lies with the NRA or with “Fudds” or “compromisers” – and the answer is to be even more uncompromising and to even act as if armed conflict is around the corner. They seem to think that making that argument to a soccer mom already freaked out about her kids’ school being shot up is going to really help our cause. It doesn’t, and it is well past time to say that.
It’s a version of Second Amendment snake oil, and too many Second Amendment supporters buy it. Second Amendment supporters need to be able to reach a point where they can use reason and logic to present our case. Sometimes that means limiting the short-term damage, or using smart tactics.
Bloomberg’s anti-Second Amendment extremism relies on fear to move forward. The smart move is to ensure that we prove his fear-mongering to be nothing more than a lie.
About Harold Hutchison
Writer Harold Hutchison has more than a dozen years of experience covering military affairs, international events, U.S. politics and Second Amendment issues. Harold was consulting senior editor at Soldier of Fortune magazine and is the author of the novel Strike Group Reagan. He has also written for the Daily Caller, National Review, Patriot Post, Strategypage.com, and other national websites.