Hillary Clinton and the Democrats want to restrict the rights of law-abiding people to own firearms. Specifically, Mrs Clinton believes that the decision in District of Columbia v Heller, which first held that the Second Amendment protects an individual right to own firearms,¹ was wrongly decided.² Yet, just what do the Democrats do when people who are legally barred from possessing firearms are caught? From The Baltimore Sun:
by Justin Fenton | October 22, 2016 | 2:23 PM EDT
Baltimore police and prosecutors race to tamp down a sustained spike in violence, many of the charges against people caught with illegal guns aren’t sticking, or defendants are only jailed for a fraction of their sentence.
About one-quarter of such gun cases are dropped before defendants go to trial, according to a Baltimore Sun analysis. Even when convicted of illegally possessing a firearm, prosecutors say, defendants are sentenced on average to 16 months in jail, with a substantial portion of their sentences suspended.
At the same time, police data show that fewer people arrested with illegal guns are ordered held without bail.
In one case, a 23-year-old man was granted bail after being arrested in the city with a fully loaded revolver and is now accused of fatally stabbing a man in Baltimore County five days after his release. The arrestee had a felony record and faced a mandatory five years in prison on the gun charge.
“There’s no certainty of a consequence,” Police Commissioner Kevin Davis said of the Baltimore justice system, adding that he believes carrying an illegal gun should be viewed as a “pre-murder” crime.
Daniel Webster, a Johns Hopkins University professor who studies gun crime and has been consulting with city leaders, says the criminal justice system has been re-examining sentencing and bails, and not everyone deserves lengthy prison time. At the same time, he said, research shows “focusing on gun offenders very consistently, when done well, correlates with fewer people getting shot.”
The city is on track for more than 300 homicides this year, and last year’s count reached a historic per-capita high. In Baltimore, one of every three people shot dies, making it one of the most lethal cities in America, a recent Sun investigation found.
There’s more at the link, but the important fact to remember is: Baltimore is, and has long been, controlled lock, stock and barrel — phrase very deliberately chosen for this context — by the Democrats, yet when the city’s police actually catch someone who is legally barred from having a weapon, very little, if anything, is actually done to them.³
Let me be blunt here: melding their words with their deeds, the Democrats are for gun control aimed at the law-abiding, and against gun control targeting actual criminals! Oh, they’d certainly never say that, never admit that, but what else can be deduced from their words and their actual deeds?
The supposedly evil National Rifle Association’s position is, and has been, that the government shouldn’t seek to further restrict the rights of law-abiding citizens, but prosecute the violations of laws that already exist:
— NRA (@NRA) January 8, 2016
Violent crimes occur most frequently in more densely populated urban areas, and our most densely populated cities are almost all under Democratic rather than Republican party control. The Obama Administration has not been doing very much to enforce existing federal gun control laws, and our cities haven’t been doing all they should about prosecuting gun crimes in their jurisdictions.
Rather, the Democrats have found it easier to politicize gun control, to claim the need for passing more laws, laws aimed at people who do not have criminal records, than it is to enforce the laws already on the books. What can we conclude other than the Democrats prefer talk about gun control to taking action against criminals?
Cross-posted on The First Street Journal.
¹ – The Heller decision applied only to federal enclaves, such as the District of Columbia. The subsequent case of McDonald v Chicago extended Second Amendment guarantees of the individual right to keep and bear arms to the states.
² – Mrs Clinton said, at a small, private fundraiser, the audio of which was obtained by the Washington Free Beacon:
“I was proud when my husband took (the National Rifle Association) on, and we were able to ban assault weapons, but he had to put a sunset on so 10 years later. Of course (President George W.) Bush wouldn’t agree to reinstate them,” said Clinton.
“We’ve got to go after this,” Clinton continued. “And here again, the Supreme Court is wrong on the Second Amendment. And I am going to make that case every chance I get.”
“I’m going to speak out, I’m going to do everything I can to rally people against this pernicious, corrupting influence of the NRA and we’re going to do whatever we can,” she said.
Clinton argued that the NRA has “so intimidated elected members of Congress and other legislative bodies that these people are passing the most absurd laws.”
³ – CNN ran a story noting the lack of federal gun prosecutions, which President Obama tried to blame on wicked Republicans cutting funds, but the Baltimore story is about the failure of state prosecutions for firearms offenses.