TZP readers range widely in thinking on the political process. Some don’t do electoral politics out of principle, some do. Some simply don’t see a point in voting anymore. Your personal mileage may vary. I’ve seen a great many intelligent, informed, and principled people come to diametrically opposed positions based on facts and reason.
Regardless where you stand, in America, in practice, elected officials can have a negative or positive effect on RKBA. Most often when they absolutely shouldn’t, based on the Constitution.
Currently, there are at least twelve parties worth of candidates and twenty independent individuals who are registered candidates. (I say “at least” because there are multiple “socialist” parties in America not listed on that page, who may be fielding candidates.)
The two automatic ballot access parties have fielded interesting examples. Clinton is running on a campaign plank of illegally restricting rights by executive order. Presumptive Republican candidate Trump (who changes parties more often than I change automobiles), says now that he’s in favor of the Second Amendment and RKBA, but in practice acted and claimed otherwise in the past. And present: Trump buildings are usually gun-free zones.
Socialists being socialists, it’s probably safe to assume they’re all anti-gun. The animals right “Humane Party” likely is, too; Bog knows,they’d need a disarmed populace to impose their visions on America.
The Libertarian Party was once an RKBA bastion, but they lost the confidence of myself and many others with the War-On-(Some)-Drugs Barr/Rotarian-Socialism Root ticket in 2008.
In an age when the President will nominate and appoint federal judges — especially Supreme Court Justices who’ve seized final say on what is constitutional — with lifetime tenure, and who can, by executive order, erect or eliminate bureaucratic barriers to basic human/civil rights, it matters who the next President is. I wish it didn’t. If the federal government had magically been limited to actual constitutional powers, it wouldn’t. But it does.
L. Neil Smith described the issue of guns as a litmus test. Why should you trust a politician who doesn’t trust you with defensive arms? Just what is that SOB planning to do to you that he can’t do if you can defend yourself?
As a practical matter, the most likely Prez-to-be is either most hated, anti-gun harridan in the nation; or the anti-gun, anti-property rights Democrat running as a pro-gun Republican (who actually once said he’d consider Oprah Winfrey as a running mate). If Clinton is somehow indicted for the disqualifying felonies she already publicly admitted, the socialist who is promising free stuff for everybody at your expense is waiting impatiently in the wings; I rather think he’ll need you disarmed for all that, too.
It’s safe to assume that whichever rights-violator wins, the Inauguration Day security zone is going to be horrifyingly entertaining… for those of us outside its range. Less entertaining, even more horrifying for those trapped in the District of Corruption area.
Ghu save the nation economy if the Greens win. The other third parties strike me as too small, too disorganized, too irrational, or otherwise unacceptable (or accepting of freedom) to be of any use. Some of them All of the Above.
This would be an excellent time for the LP to locate and dust off their principles, pick a relatively sane candidate, and declare a platform of “We aren’t Trump or Clinton.” Short of the Hope scenario, it’s the LP’s best chance to win a Presidential election. But then there’s the problem of the electoral college that does the real electing…
George Santayana warned, “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”
Whether you vote or not, remember. Consider not just the candidates’ words, but their intentions, and what those intentions require.
Ed. note: This commentary appeared first on TZP’s weekly email alert. If you would like to be among the first to see new commentary (as well as to get notice of new polls and recaps of recent posts), please sign up for our alert list. (See sidebar or, if you’re on a mobile device, scroll down). Be sure to respond when you receive your activation email!