Congressional Democrats Peddle Gun Control As “public health crisis”

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Congressional Democrats are making another frenzied attempt at gun control, this time by officially framing it as a “public health crisis”. On Tuesday, November 28, the Senate Judiciary Committee, lead by Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin, held a hearing labeling gun violence as a public health epidemic.

Predictably, topics covered included:

  • “Red Flag” Gun Confiscation laws
  • Universal Gun Registration
  • Mandatory Storage Laws
  • Bans on “Assault Weapons”

The hearing was an attempt by Democrats to build upon the so-called “Bipartisan Safer Communities Act,” a broad set of gun control laws signed into law on June 25, 2022, many of which are being challenged in court today (such as the attempt by the ATF to redefine what constitutes someone in the business of selling firearms).

Durbin, who has long held an F rating on guns from the NRA, opened the hearing with a false statement that Democrats have been peddling to the public for quite some time:

Guns are now the number one cause of death for American kids and teens.

This statement has been refuted numerous times with factual evidence, including hundreds, if not thousands, of community notes on Twitter/X.

Durbin then took the hearing in a very interesting direction: Chicago. The windy city is home to some of the worst violence of any Democrat-controlled city in the nation, with any given Monday morning news report often citing dozens of shootings, and numerous homicides. Democrats have been virtually silent on Chicago’s unchecked violence, while calling out isolated incidents in other, rural parts of the country.

But, as is often the case, Democrats focused solutions on punishing law-abiding gun owners and treating the symptoms, rather than the cause.

“In Chicago, I heard from doctors who were sick of treating gunshot victims on the operating table—they wanted to prevent the gruesome injuries from happening in the first place. So, in 2018, I brought together the CEOs of the 10 largest hospitals serving Chicago to understand what they were doing in the neighborhoods surrounding their hospitals and how we could do more,” Durbin said, adding, “Most importantly, these hospitals aren’t just stitching up physical injuries, they are addressing the emotional scars of their patients.”

Notably missing from the discussion: any reference to gang violence or the incredibly weak law enforcement policies, and the soft-on-crime approach used by district attorneys in nearly all Democrat-run cities.

Dudley Brown, President of the The National Association for Gun Rights, the nation’s largest “no compromise” pro-gun organization, with 4.5 million members nationwide, observed the following:

Senate Democrats continue to try to blame the violent crime epidemic in Democrat controlled cities on law-abiding gun owners, instead of taking responsibility for ‘soft on crime’ DAs releasing dangerous criminals and making stealing legal.

To support their position, Democrats cited statistics from the left-leaning Gun Violence Archive and New England Journal of Medicine, both of which have been guilty of misrepresenting numbers by re-categorizing legal adults as children, and including suicides in their pumped-up “gun death” counts.

As evidence of just how remarkably tone deaf Democrats are, Democrat witness, Franklin Cosey-Gay, director of the Violence Recovery Program at UChicago Medicine, made the following word salad statement:

Violence recovery specialists use intensive case management partnering with community violence intervention to ensure comprehensive recovery and reduce re-injury after discharge.

It’s hard to decipher exactly what that means, but it doesn’t sound like there is any law enforcement component to it, and the optimistically-worded “community violence intervention,” or CVI program pushed by Democrats seems to have had zero effect on Chicago based upon a reading of Monday morning news reports.

Some of the most interesting and powerful testimony came from Amy Swearer, a leading conservative voice on the Second Amendment and a Senior Legal Fellow in the Edwin Meese III Center for Legal and Judicial Studies. Swearer runs The Heritage Foundation’s Defensive Gun Use Database and was a primary author of the recently published Heritage Foundation ebook, “The Essential Second Amendment.” Swearer opened with the following statement:

…we are, for all intents and purposes, having what is basically the same hearing on gun violence over and over and over again. Yes, to be fair, you have styled it in a number of new and creative ways. You have couched gun violence as an economic problem, as a domestic violence problem, and as a Supreme Court problem. You have narrowed the scope down to the impact of gun violence on the nation’s children and to its manifestation as mass public violence. You have limited the discussion of potential solutions to gun violence to specific proposals like universal background checks and banning certain cosmetic features. You have even taken a field trip to Chicago to look very specifically at gun crime in the Windy City. And in all of these hearings, my testimony has consistently addressed the same underlying realities of gun violence, rebutted the same arguments in favor of gun control, and called Congress’ attention to [the] same potential avenues for meaningfully saving lives without running afoul of the Constitution or risking serious unintended consequences. The reason for this consistency is that, for all of the reframing of the issue of gun violence, we are still just having the same conversation about the same problems, which have not changed.

Were it not for Swearer’s testimony, there would have been no mention of the Constitutional Rights of law-abiding citizens during the entire hearing. Democrats certainly weren’t concerned with the subject – far from it, they are looking for every extra-constitutional means to ban, limit, and chill gun ownership.

While it’s unclear what the fallout from the hearing will look like, what is clear is that the left is on an all-out, highly orchestrated campaign against the Second Amendment and law-abiding Americans that is attempting nothing less than complete disarmament of the American people, as we wrote about last month.

We encourage you to continue to support gun-rights organizations that track these agendas and fight them in court (you can find their links on our home page), and to exercise your Second Amendment rights by purchasing firearms, getting training and learning how to defend yourself and your loved ones.

We will continue to cover this story.

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