blogenlust
9.11.2004

Assault Weapon Ban Expires Monday


This Monday, the 10 year old ban on assault weapons will expire. This means that come Tuesday, it will be legal to buy/import/sell Uzi's, AK-47s, and other superfluous weapons in the United States. Of course, this being the political season, there are political repurcussions for both candidate. Bush, under pressure from the NRA, will allow the ban to expire in order to secure their valuable endorsement and not piss off his increasingly valuable base. Kerry, sensing a political opening, is arguing that allowing the ban to expire will aid al Qaeda. That might be a little extreme, but the gist of the point is relevant. I do not think that banning assault weapons are a threat to the 2nd Amendment. There have to be limitations on what is considered "arms." Surely, it is not logical to allow any American the right to own a nuclear weapon or another type of WMD. Aren't these "arms", too? Yes, and it makes no sense to legalize them because there isn't a need for American citizens to own them. And not only is there not a need to own them, but also, they exceedingly threaten the lives of those who don't own them. In much the same way, there are no reasons why an American citizen should own an AK-47 or an Uzi when there are plenty of legal guns readily available. I think most Americans will agree that it is entirely reasonable to place limits on the types of weapons people may legally own. Compare this issue to the debate about whether to legalize drugs. Marijuana, cocaine, heroin, and many other drugs are not legal because of the alleged threat they pose to society and to individuals who use them. Yet assault weapons, even though they pose the same types of threats as illegal drugs, are legal under the 2nd Amendment. To me, there is a great hypocrisy in allowing one type of threat, but not the other. I wonder how many pro-assault weapon advocates are also advocates for the legalization of drugs? My guess is probably not many, but I'd like to hear someone ask them this question. I'd also like someone to ask Bush and Kerry, too.