The Second Amendment Stands: Now What for Chicago?
Whatever you might think of the Supreme Court striking down Chicago’s handgun ban, it’s hard to argue that you don’t have a right to defend yourself in your own home.
If you agree, but think that government can forbid you from defending yourself with a handgun, then you have to say what weapon you can have. Sounds simple enough, but let’s try it as an exercise:
Landmines (or improvised explosive devices). Okay, a little extreme, but it meets the objections of anti-gun activists. Landmines are not portable. You can’t carry concealed landmines and they’re unlikely to be stolen and fall into the hands of criminals. Unless they know the landmines are there and how to dig them up without blowing themselves up.
Bats. The kind that flies around at night and smothers an unsuspecting intruder with a mound of guano is a satisfying thought, but unworkable. A baseball bat, what I had in mind, is useful for crushing an intruder’s head. A bat can’t be accidentally discharged, so no chance of taking out a relative in a moment of panic. Bats can be safely stored under your bed, and require no child safety locks. Bats are readily available and require no license. At least not yet. Of course, your bat isn’t worth much if the intruder has a gun. Bang, you’re dead.
Tazers. Wait, sorry. I think that the same rules apply to Tazers as to handguns.
Lance, samurai sword, catapult, dagger and other Medieval weapons. Once word gets out that you’ve got a pole axe sequestered in your bedroom, a city inspector will show up and demand a pay-off for keeping it quiet.
Seriously, the Chicago gun ban didn’t leave you with much of a choice for a legal and effective way protect yourself in your home. Putting aside legalisms, common sense and whatever philosophical model you subscribe to, the right to protect yourself in home in reasonable manner is fundamental. Unless you’re so blinded by your ideology that you believe that you have no right to protect yourself in your home. As “progressives” like to say, “Just don’t force your beliefs on me.”
For decent folks who feel (and are in fact) unprotected in their own homes from the gangs and thugs, this is no ideological debate. In fact, the Chicago gun ban has not prevented the murder and violence that afflicts so many innocent people.
It’s no accident that support for a gun ban repeal is so strong in impoverished neighborhoods. The gun ban is another example of liberals love to impose their ideology, even in matters of life and death, on the very people they claim to represent.
Remember, this is not about whether you can carry a gun in your glove compartment, or in a concealed or even visible holster. It’s about having a weapon in your home that is commensurate in power and intimidation to what an intruder might be carrying.
Reason, however, will not deter Mayor Richard M. Daley from drawing up so many restrictions on having a handgun in your house that the very people who most need to protect themselves will be unable to comply. Just who does Daley think he is protecting with this nonsense?
Dennis Byrne is a regular columnist for the Chicago Daily Observer