October 5, 2017

"Thank you, Bret Stephens, for saying what I have never seen a conservative pundit say in all my years of following the political scene."

Top-rated comment — with 517 up votes — at the NYT column "Repeal the Second Amendment."

The comment is ambiguous. Has the commenter still never seen a conservative pundit say this?

99 comments:

William said...

Work out a compromise. Repeal the 4th & 5th amendments along with the 2nd.

Gahrie said...

There are a few other Amendments that need to be repealed first..like the 16th, 17th, and 19th.

Larry J said...

Well, since BLM claims liberalism is white supremacy, we probably need to kill a lot of other amendments and rights, too. For example, freedom of speech (at least at universities) no longer seems to exist. We can do away with the first amendment. While we're at it, due process rights deny accusers their ability to destroy someone they don't like with impunity, so we need to get rid of that, too. Which other rights are they willing to eliminate?

n.n said...

How many Americans have committed elective abortion? Mass abortion?

Should all Americans be painted as a class? Class diversity? Color diversity?

Rights and responsibilities. Also, judge people by the "content of their character".

Bob Boyd said...

Does repealing an amendment require the same process as passing one in the first place? If so, it will never happen.
Basically, this is call for the gun grabbers to be honest, another thing that will never happen.

deepelemblues said...

Stephens isn't a conservative. Never was.

He's always been a proud adherent of the managerialism that's been slowly degrading this country for almost 120 years.

Francisco D said...

Brett Stephens is going after David Brooks' job.

JPS said...

I'm not for repealing the Second Amendment, but I appreciate his honesty and wish those who cite the UK and Australia's confiscation programs would be more candid. They should say, We need to change or replace the Second Amendment, because here's why "shall not be infringed" as an individual right is causing us harm. Here are the policies we could enact if we didn't have that. Here's the good they would do.

But here's the thing. They'd actually have to persuade people. Lots and lots of them. Pouring out their contempt, and wearing their ignorance of firearms as a badge of honor, strangely haven't moved a lot of people to support their sensible gun policies. Respected media outlets who apparently have no one on staff with any experience of firearms don't help, as their fact-checkers put out analyses instantly debunked by anyone who knows.

The anti-gun arguments I see aren't persuasion. They're basically "Look at those disgusting people. Don't you hate them? I sure do." [Fist bump.]

rcocean said...

He *still* hasn't seen a conservative pundit do it.

Burt Stephens voted for Hillary.

rcocean said...

BTW, bill Kristol and his wife are now donating to the Democrat party. They want the "D" to win the VA Virginia Governorship.

Kristol's another "New York times Conservative". David Gergen was always labeled as a "Reagan Conservative" on PBS. And then he went to work for Bill Clinton.

rcocean said...

See a pattern?

wildswan said...

So was Bret Stephens trying to wake up the other side? Saying "Look, just come out and say what you mean, your lame talk about closing loopholes and banning automatic weapons and background checks only shows that you don't know what you are talking about. Say openly that you want to ban guns. It won't happen (in next twenty years anyhow) but by being frank about this impossibility, we'll be freed up to talk about something else that might happen." There's stasis on the left (where Bret Stephens is), a nothing-is-happening, a datedness. It has to disturb leftys, however determined they may be to keep ungood think out of the media. Maybe Bret Stephens is trying to talk about the frozen side of US politics which is contrasting so vividly with the continents adrift, the volcanoes erupting, and the hurricanes making landfall on the other side.

AlbertAnonymous said...

Absolute Garbage !!!!!!

Bret Stephens doesn't like or appreciate the rights expressed in the 2nd Amendment. Fine. He doesn't need to exercise those rights. I, on the other hand, still like and appreciate mine.

I don't appreciate people like Bret claiming garbage like this (and either disingenuous or clearly not understanding the founders and the constitution/bill of rights). But rather than debate it, let me just say this:

What constitutional right(s) does Bret Stephens think is/are most important to him? Let's start a movement to repeal that/those rights. Then see how he feels...

...and PS how do you repeal God-given rights which the Government we consented to create has no ability to restrict/repeal/infringe upon?

Rabel said...

I think it's a great idea for the left to put all of their time and money into a second amendment repeal movement.

Gahrie said...

Does repealing an amendment require the same process as passing one in the first place?

Basically. You pass a new Amendment to invalidate the old amendment. The 21st Amendment repeals the 18th Amendment.

AlbertAnonymous said...

Wouldn't Bret also have to repeal or modify the 9th and 10th amendments as well?

Amendment IX

The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

Amendment X

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

TestTube said...

Brings up an interesting point, and I would greatly appreciate it if you, Althouse (I understand you prefer "Althouse" to "Ann") would do a little pro bono instruction on constitutional law:

The Bill of Rights outlines certain rights of the individual. But there is also the idea that these are natural rights, either granted by God, or, if you are an Atheist, an integral part of human nature. But not bestowed by the government!

So if you repeal the Second Amendment, are you claiming to remove the right? Because I can imagine that a lot of gun-owning people, currently punctiliously law-abiding, are going to get a lot less law-abiding.

So there is both the philosophical implications -- what does repeal of an amendment in the bill of rights mean -- as well as the idea of how are you really going to take all those guns away.

Your thoughts, if you please.

n.n said...

This issue is analogous to people armed with a scalpel, scissors, vacuum, etc. and are licensed to carry out medical surgery, excise a growth, or remove excess fat. The Pro-Choice Amendment (a constitutional law invention), under a layer of privacy, no less, established a constitutional law for these tools to be used for the commission of elective abortion, decapitation, extraction, etc.

Only at the twilight fringe do people advocate for suppressing dissent and disarming a population, while enthusiastically defending the operation of abortion chambers and cannibalistic clinics.

CJinPA said...

I'd argue against repealing the 2nd amendment but they'd just use my Hate Facts to repeal the 1st.

Bob Boyd said...

The right won't "cease to be" if the 2nd Amendment is repealed.
You can't take away an inalienable right. You can only decide to start oppressing people.

rcocean said...

If Hillary had been elected a SCOTUS Kagan Court would have eviscerated the 2nd Amendment and made it a dead letter - just like the 10th Amendment.

You don't need to amend the Constitution, you just need 5 liberal SCOTUS judges.

buwaya said...

Will never happen.

The public does not trust the government and the spirit of revolt has been growing since the 1990s. This is actually visible in the statistics of background checks and other proxies for gun sales, as well as the change in the nature of the weapons being sold. Much more semi-auto rifles with large magazines vs hunting arms. Back when we had gun stores in SF and the Penninsula you would see racks of polished walnut, and the odd "black rifle" was an oddity.

Now, recently in Reno, I saw racks and racks of black rifles.

If they want to make changes in the propensity for the public to arm itself then they must make massive policy changes that restores public trust. I don't see such a reform coming.

Martin said...

Bret Stephens is a conservative? Not since moving to the NYT, anyway.

Bob Boyd said...

Throwing a question out there:

Is Trump trustworthy on the 2nd Amendment or will he "make a deal"?

tim in vermont said...

Find the votes if you can. Just don't do it non-democratically. I am pretty sure that these "A machine gun is clearly different than an automatic weapon" people will help you scare up some votes!

DKWalser said...

What so many seem to ignore (or be ignorant of) is the fact that most of the weapons used in the massacre are already illegal. Fully-automatic weapons, as opposed to semi-automatic weapons, are all but impossible for most of us to legally own. To buy one requires a federal license and payment of a hefty fee for each weapon purchased. The license requires an extensive background check and is not easy to obtain.

So, again, the anti-gun crowd is advocating for a 'solution' that wouldn't have prevented the crime in question. If the 2nd Amendment had been repealed 10 years ago, the shooter could have still massacred those people. He broke a law in getting those weapons. He broke another when he used them. He broke another when he killed those people. Would another law making illegal-to-own weapons even more illegal have stopped him?

Gospace said...

I really really hope and pray Democrats nationwide will run on this in 2018.

tim in vermont said...

Althouse (I understand you prefer "Althouse" to "Ann") would do a little pro bono instruction on constitutional law:

I think the price is a thousand bucks. Maybe you could do a Kickstarter?

MadisonMan said...

I would bet the author that his Supreme Court prediction is wrong.

tim in vermont said...

But here's the thing. They'd actually have to persuade people. Lots and lots of them

Yeah, that would be interesting to see, that's why you shouldn't worry.

rcocean said...

"Is Trump trustworthy on the 2nd Amendment or will he "make a deal"?"

About as trustworthy as McCain, Romney, Bush II, Ryan, and McConnell.

TestTube said...

Bob, I am a rabid pro-Trumper, which means that after wanting almost anyone besides him in the primary, I thought he was marginally better than the alternative in the general election, and halfheartedly voted for him and also I think he is not as bad as I thought he would be, and even am occasionally pleasantly surprised by him.

And as a rabid pro-Trumper, my opinion is: Trump is not trustworthy on anything.

buwaya said...

"Find the votes if you can."

Votes don't really matter. And in the end the laws don't matter. The structure of law does not determine the public world-view. If there is a spirit of rebellion in the land, the removal of arms will merely increase it, perhaps to the point of crisis, or anarchy.

Anonymous said...

They've just seen a formerly conservative columnist say it

YoungHegelian said...

Okay, repeal the 2nd Amendment. Then what?

There are 300 million guns in the USA. How are you going to take those guns out of circulation? The same people who are telling us we can't do anything about 11 million illegal immigrants are now saying it's somehow possible to remove 300 million guns owned perfectly legally until that point by American citizens?

Kidz, can you say "Civil War"? The problem with any form of gun control in the US is that that horse left the barn a geological epoch ago.

Greg Hlatky said...

Repeal the Second Amendment? Two-thirds of each the House and Senate, then three-quarters of the state legislatures (i.e. 99 state chambers). No problem!

Larry J said...

Gahrie said...
Does repealing an amendment require the same process as passing one in the first place?

Basically. You pass a new Amendment to invalidate the old amendment. The 21st Amendment repeals the 18th Amendment.


To actually repeal an amendment, you're exactly right. However, that's hard work and in the case of the 2nd Amendment, virtually impossible. It's much easier to get the courts to rule against the second amendment than to repeal it. The Constitution only means what the supreme court says it means. That's why the Left supports the notion of a "living Constitution". They want the ability to just change stuff as they go.

Bob Boyd said...

The Volstead Act was supposed to prevent all kinds horrors associated with those who abused alcohol even though most people used it responsibly. It created far more problems that it solved and there were celebrations when it was scraped.

Outlawing drugs hasn't made America safer or less violent or made drugs hard to get. Now we're heading in the direction of legalizing them.

We're told we can't round up and deport 11 million illegal aliens so we have to give them amnesty.
How about rounding up tens of millions of suddenly criminal gun owners? No problem?

Lucien said...

How 'bout an Amendment reading:

"The Second Amendment to this Constitution shall not be applied to the states"?

That way Wyoming can have different laws than DC, and since Republicans run about 30 states they might not feel that threatened. In fact, making gun rights/control a state law issue might serve to keep some states voting Republican.

Nonapod said...

At the very least it's more honest for lefty's just to admit that they want to repeal/abrogate the 2nd amendment and knock it off with all the "common sense gun control" horse%^$#. Then the discussion can focus on the good and bad of regular citizens having guns. But that's the problem with much of the left, they would rather lie and deceive than actually try to make an argument that could stand up to intellectual scrutiny. I can only assume it's because they'd probably because they know they'd lose.

They can't say what they really feel in their hearts, which is that they hate and fear their fellow citizens, particularly those rural deplorables who like hunting. It doesn't matter that those same deplorables hardly ever commit any crimes with firearms. It doesn't matter that the actual number of homicides committed with firearms has gone down over the past couple decades while the number of guns has increased. They still labor under severe misapprehensions about guns and the people who use them, and they refuse to enlighten themselves.

buwaya said...

"They still labor under severe misapprehensions about guns and the people who use them, and they refuse to enlighten themselves."

Its not this either.
What you have is a general cultural conflict, between culturally determined tribes, and on that level things like guns are just symbols over which to fight. Its like a game of capture the flag. The flag itself, its nature and structure, or its location, are not very relevant independent of the contest.

n.n said...

If there is a spirit of rebellion in the land, the removal of arms will merely increase it, perhaps to the point of crisis, or anarchy.

A means to an end. A recurring wet dream of many progressives.

JPS said...

Lucien,

I think there's a case to be made for federalism. If Massachusetts wants to be hilariously restrictive, and Wyoming wants to say, Don't shoot anyone - unless of course you have to - then let as many people as possible be happy with their state's laws.

Two problems to start with:

1) The antigun crowd always insists that DC has horrific gun violence because VA has relaxed gun laws. Chicago, because the state of Illinois isn't as restrictive and Indiana's nearby. By inference we need the whole country to be as restrictive as Chicago, until then, gun control has not failed in Chicago.

2) We already had that argument where states say that federal civil rights don't apply in their states. It was kind of a mess.

Nonapod said...

and on that level things like guns are just symbols over which to fight. Its like a game of capture the flag

While I agree, it's still frustrating when you know your tribe has actual data and facts to back up their symbols and the other side pretends they don't know that.

Real American said...

I'm not much for litmus tests, but I am pretty sure that repealing the 2nd Amendment is not a conservative position. If you're advocating for it, then you're not a conservative. Maybe you're just a "New York Times Conservative" which means you pretend to be one in their paper.

Todd said...

JPS said...

10/5/17, 12:12 PM


Sorry but I can not recall the last time (oh so many decades ago that) I heard a "sensible gun policy" proposal for further restricting my right that was not ALREADY a law. We are pretty far past the "sensible" line on this one.

Chuck said...

Was anybody in the NYT readership congratulating Bret Stephens for this beautiful part of that column?

Given all of this, why do liberals keep losing the gun control debate?

Maybe it’s because they argue their case badly and — let’s face it — in bad faith. Democratic politicians routinely profess their fidelity to the Second Amendment — or rather, “a nuanced reading” of it — with all the conviction of Barack Obama’s support for traditional marriage, circa 2008. People recognize lip service for what it is.

Or this part:

Then there are the endless liberal errors of fact. There is no “gun-show loophole” per se; it’s a private-sale loophole, in other words the right to sell your own stuff. The civilian AR-15 is not a true “assault rifle,” and banning such rifles would have little effect on the overall murder rate, since most homicides are committed with handguns. It’s not true that 40 percent of gun owners buy without a background check; the real number is closer to one-fifth.

Or this part, with which I ultimately reject even though the writing and thought processes are so wonderful:

Repealing the Amendment may seem like political Mission Impossible today, but in the era of same-sex marriage it’s worth recalling that most great causes begin as improbable ones. Gun ownership should never be outlawed, just as it isn’t outlawed in Britain or Australia. But it doesn’t need a blanket Constitutional protection, either. The 46,445 murder victims killed by gunfire in the United States between 2012 and 2016 didn’t need to perish so that gun enthusiasts can go on fantasizing that “Red Dawn” is the fate that soon awaits us.

I don't happen to think that the Second Amendment should be repealed, or will be repealed. But I sure do like reading Bret Stephens. Sincere thanks to Althouse for blogging this one.

Richard Dolan said...

Repeal the Second Amendment! Now there's a catchy campaign slogan that any Dem can sign on to. Perhaps the Dems will also add Repeal the First Amendment! while they're going about attacking the Bill of Rights -- they don't much like religion, it's just for the dim-witted after all, and hate speech should find no shelter where Snowflakes tread.

Can they be that dumb? Yes, they can. Works for me. The only question is whether Stephens was setting a trap while playing to his (new) audience, or whether he's gone over to the Dark Side. I suspect the latter.

Khesanh 0802 said...

Bret Stephens lost his "conservative " credentials during the Republican primary last year. He published a couple of anti-Trump screeds during the general campaign that would have made Chuck Schumer blush. There was a time, when he was writing about defense and the Middle East, that he was worth reading. Since he was over taken by TDS he has lost his bearings on domestic politics completely. HIs move to the NYT was a signal of where he stands today. If his TDS gets much worse he'll end up at the Daily Worker.

Jim at said...

Come and take them.

buwaya said...

You aren't preparing for "Red Dawn" as much as for Falls Road, Belfast.

Clayton Hennesey said...

The whole point of the Second Amendment is that it becomes self-non-repealable.

exiledonmainstreet said...

1) The antigun crowd always insists that DC has horrific gun violence because VA has relaxed gun laws. Chicago, because the state of Illinois isn't as restrictive and Indiana's nearby."

I always ask "Then why does the rest of Illinois and Indiana, with the possible exception of Gary, have less of a problem with gun violence than Chicago does? Do the guns suddenly become more evil once they cross the state and Cook county borders?"

Bob Boyd said...

"...so that gun enthusiasts can go on fantasizing that “Red Dawn” is the fate that soon awaits us."

More of the dishonesty and sneering contempt that has been so effective at winning voter support for the Progs lately.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

Repealing the Amendment may seem like political Mission Impossible today, but in the era of same-sex marriage it’s worth recalling that most great causes begin as improbable ones.

Yeah, it is amazing that they managed to get that same-sex marriage amendment passed. Oh, wait...

Greg Hlatky said...


1) It's not the "gun enthusiasts" with their "Red Dawn" fantasies who are committing the vast majority of gun-related homicides.

2) There's more than a dime's worth of difference between persuading five justices to do what they were aching to do anyway and repealing part of the Constitution.

Rick said...

Exactly zero gun control advocates are interested in repealing the second amendment. Instead they want a court to nullify it.

Chuck said...

Ignorance is Bliss said...
"Repealing the Amendment may seem like political Mission Impossible today, but in the era of same-sex marriage it’s worth recalling that most great causes begin as improbable ones."

Yeah, it is amazing that they managed to get that same-sex marriage amendment passed. Oh, wait...

Okay, this gets my vote for "winner of the thread."

Kevin said...

Stephens found the water cooler next to Krugman's office and has been drinking heavily.

OTOH, his co-workers will stop spitting in the lunch he puts in the company refrigerator.

tim in vermont said...

Buwaya is cheering us on for the entertainment value! ;^)

gadfly said...

Questions: Who rates NYT comments and who cares how others rank feedback?

These questions are deliberately ambiguous.

Darrell said...

They said they could never ban guns in Australia, either. They first called for a National Gun Registration--with a penalty equal to the cost of a house for every unregistered gun found in your possession. Men who wanted to "keep a few back" were quickly threatened with divorce by their wife, or summary execution.

After all the guns were registered and a database created, they announced that all guns were to be turned in, under penalty of a fine that equaled the cost of a home for every gun found in your possession. The stories of people being found with unregistered guns and penalized fully were all over the news. The government made sure they prosecuted every case and the left-wing Media in Australia gladly played up every one. All those crying faces on the news each night with people losing their homes and still owing money. People turned in their guns. Afterwards, good-Lefty teachers across Australia, and other "good citizens" turned in millions of tips to police about people who still possessed a gun. Kids, especially very young ones in school, were asked to share their family gun stories on a regular basis.

This is now the George Soros Gold Standard for confiscating all guns. Now fill this thead with stories of how you will risk your homes. Or how you will shoot it out with the SWAT teams that come to collect your guns. Or how you will shoot those who voted for such laws. Or how you and your family will go of the grid. . .

tim in vermont said...

Well now that "love wins" is a principle of constitutional interpretation!

Kevin said...

Liberals keep shooting people so Liberals respond by calling for confiscation of Conservatives' guns.

Media unaware of laugh track in the background of their reports.

Jupiter said...

buwaya said...

"What you have is a general cultural conflict, between culturally determined tribes, and on that level things like guns are just symbols over which to fight. Its like a game of capture the flag. The flag itself, its nature and structure, or its location, are not very relevant independent of the contest."

Your comments are insightful, but I don't think you see this quite the way we do. By "we" I mean my tribe, white Americans. But most of the members of my tribe don't realize that they are members of my tribe. They think they are members of a tribe called "Americans", and all the other tribes are also. Consequently, they do not realize that some of the other tribes (yours, for instance) are our natural allies, and others are our natural enemies. This willful blindness prevents our pursuing and securing our interests, even though we are smarter, richer, better disciplined and more numerous than our enemies. I have despaired of my tribe, more than once. But I am beginning to see some hopeful signs.

Jupiter said...

That means, by the way, that Bret Stephens is no conservative, but neither am I. The term for a person who wants to return to a political dispensation which once was but is no longer, is "reactionary". The desire to live in a Constitutional Republic was conservative when that's what we had, but it is now reactionary.

James K said...

Does repealing an amendment require the same process as passing one in the first place?

Basically. You pass a new Amendment to invalidate the old amendment. The 21st Amendment repeals the 18th Amendment.


Easier to get five SCOTUS justices to gut it. The 9th and 10th have effectively been repealed through expansive readings of the interstate commerce and general welfare clauses.

The Godfather said...

I just saw a news report that the NRA is asking BATF to consider more stringent regulation of "bump stocks". I'd never heard of theses things before this week, but they apparently make it possible for a semi-automatic rifle to fire like (or amost like) a fully-automatic rifle. The Las Vegas shooter apparently used a bump stock on one or more of his rifles to achieve the high rate of fire we heard on the videos. Given that civilian possession of fully-automatic weapons is already severely restricted, this seems like a sensible proposal to me. We've been mocking the gun-grabbers for years for not knowing the difference between an automatic and a semi-automatic firearm, and I'd like to see us keep that distinction as clear as possible.

rcocean said...

Chicago and Baltimore have the strictest gun laws in the country and lots of murders and shootings.

Why? Because the crooks don't care about gun laws. "Gun Control" only controls the law abiding.

rcocean said...

Can't every semi-automatic be turned into a full automatic, will a little work?

And what is the rate of fire for a semi? It must be at least 60 rounds/minute.

Achilles said...

"The 46,445 murder victims killed by gunfire in the United States between 2012 and 2016 didn’t need to perish so that gun enthusiasts can go on fantasizing that “Red Dawn” is the fate that soon awaits us."

The hundred million people murdered by progressives/socialists in the last century were unavailable for comment.

Can anyone watch Antifa, BLM, progressives in general and think if they seized power they would not kill a few million people here?

Honestly?

The majority of Americans realize how much that bitter evil leftist portion of the population hates them. It is a projection of the wealthy elites that are funding those movements.

Sebastian said...

"They'd actually have to persuade people." No, just one or two.

"Repealing the Amendment may seem like political Mission Impossible today, but in the era of same-sex marriage it’s worth recalling that most great causes begin as improbable ones." As Stephens implies, this is how it will go down: a couple of future Kennedys will find that the right to keep and bear arms is ipso facto a violation of the liberty protected by substantive due process, and the 14th supersedes the 2nd. Whether from that they can quite get to outlawing guns altogether, by judicial fiat, remains to be seen.

Michael K said...

I am so old that I remember when Chicago banned handguns and my father turned his in. Fortunately, I already had all his shotguns. That was before 1969 because he died in January of that year.

That was when there were not many shootings in Chicago.

I would be willing to talk about repeal of the 19th. How about we talk about that ?

Comanche Voter said...

Bret Stephens is to conservatism as a bicycle is to a fish. Useless.

buwaya said...

"Can't every semi-automatic be turned into a full automatic, will a little work?"

Well, its not too difficult to make any of them shoot a lot faster than previously, but the "Automatic" designation is just a battle of definitions.

Whether the particular method is of any utility for a given purpose? TBD.

This one is just a novelty. Maybe. Until someone hauls it into a hotel room perhaps. I think one could do this sort of thing with any semi-auto type more or less.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MH2xsQcIUYI

Most auto pistols should not be too difficult to modify to full auto, in fact some of them, if excessively worn, start doing that spontaneously. This is an interesting deliberately designed full auto pistol - not very practical, more of a novelty, etc.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8d-AQsHY1_c

Patrick Henry said...

It's been said here, but bears repeating:

The 1st 10 Amendments don't grant us any rights. The rights enumerated there are "super-constitutional" and exist outside of the Constitution. The problem with "repeal the 2nd" is that it doesn't do what the left thinks it does. They see government as the grantor of rights, not the other way around where "we, the people" give some limited "rights" to the government.

Repealing the 2nd doesn't remove my right to own the weapons of my choice. Any laws are an infringement on my right to own them. What I don't have the right to do is to use them to deny someone else their natural rights (to life and property).

n.n said...

Let’s put this in perspective and gauge the liberal reaction to this exceptional crisis. Around one million wholly innocent human lives are, in America alone, aborted in Planned Parenthood and other progressive institutions every year. In exchange for implementing a measure under a mandate of color diversity (i.e. judging people as a class by the “color of their skin”, e.g. “gun owners”), the left and neo-Democratic Socialist Party will immediately terminate operation of abortion chambers, cannibalistic clinics, tear down the privacy walls, and affirm the unalienable right of babies to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

n.n said...

Some people think this exception crisis is evidence of a progressive condition. Perhaps. What is clear, is that our abortion culture, combined with the reemergence of class diversity (e.g. racism), as well as man-made social justice adventures, are first-order forcings of debasing human life, denigrating individual dignity, CAIR, and coloring the letter of the law with a twilight fringe.

mikesixes said...

We still haven't heard a conservative call for repealing the 2nd amendment. Bret Stephens is now employed by the NYT, so he is actually a "conservative".

wbfjrr2 said...

By far, suicides make up the vast bulk of gun deaths, Brett. Not murder. Look it up.

Rusty said...

...and PS how do you repeal God-given rights which the Government we consented to create has no ability to restrict/repeal/infringe upon?

No. These are inherent rights. Government has consented to protect them. Government did not create them.

Gahrie said...

I would be willing to talk about repeal of the 19th. How about we talk about that ?

Preach on brother.

Fritz said...

Might as well get rid of the 1st, too, since it only seems to apply to half of the political spectrum.

robother said...

An actual new Constitutional Amendment repealing the Second Amendment would at least have to be voted on by elected officials. Thus it would have to propose some majority-acceptable compromise. Say, a Second Amendment repeal coupled with protected "person" status for last trimester fetuses? Libertarian nightmare, but it could be viable.

NorthOfTheOneOhOne said...

I'm with Kurt Schlichter on this one:

I, for one, am not super inclined to give up my ability to defend myself in response to demands by people who eagerly tell me they want me enslaved or dead. Literally dead.

Gospace said...

JPS said...
Lucien,

I think there's a case to be made for federalism. If Massachusetts wants to be hilariously restrictive, and Wyoming wants to say, Don't shoot anyone - unless of course you have to - then let as many people as possible be happy with their state's laws.


Massachusetts Constitution : Article XVII.

The people have a right to keep and to bear arms for the common defence. And as, in time of peace, armies are dangerous to liberty, they ought not to be maintained without the consent of the legislature; and the military power shall always be held in an exact subordination to the civil authority, and be governed by it.


I think a good case can be made that Massachusetts gun laws are in violation of their state constitution, not to mention the Federal Constitution.

Michael The Magnificent said...

Just so I have the lefty argument straight, we should turn in all of our guns to the "most fascist government since the 1930's" with a president who is "literally Hitler"?

Do you know what happens when you turn in all of your guns to the Nazi government of Adolf Hitler? Auschwitz happens! Belzec happens! Treblinka happens! Buchenwald happens! Dachau happens!

HoodlumDoodlum said...

I appreciate the honesty.
Allow me to reciprocate: go fuck yourself, Bret. Ask David Brooks for tips if you don't know how.
Wanna replace Americans you find distasteful with immigrants you prefer and want to repeal part of the Bill of Rights? Sure thing, buddy. When you get to that I hope there's a lamppost waiting for you.

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HoodlumDoodlum said...
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HoodlumDoodlum said...

Me & Bret Stephens: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=47xlhnhBUH8

I admire your honesty. Hell, I like you.

Bad Lieutenant said...

Do you know what happens when you turn in all of your guns to the Nazi government of Adolf Hitler? Auschwitz happens! Belzec happens! Treblinka happens! Buchenwald happens! Dachau happens!


Don't be silly. All the fascists are on the other side. They said so themselves.

Big Mike said...

Sure didn't take Bret long to drink the Times Kool-Aid.

Douglas said...

I think it's most likely that Stephens is inviting the Democrats into the briar patch.

Mike said...

My gut reaction, because I believe Stephens knows it is impossible to "repeal the 2nd," is that this is a Swiftian essay with malice aforethought. He knows his call for repeal cannot abide the Heller decision, which progressives wish to reverse as much as they do Citizens United. But this rhetorical pose allows him to slip in the knife in the paragraphs that Chuck highlighted in bold at 2:03 p.m. above. He lays the DNC-media complex arguments bare as being ineffective and cosmetic (as the assault-weapons ban was, literally, based on many cosmetic differences among guns) and designed to hide their "lip service" behind "solutions" that don't work.

This puts their whole game in view. No progressive really wants good healthy race relations because that would obviate the need for all their "healing" proscriptions, and severely damage the grievance industry. No progressive really wants a roaring economy that "lifts all boats" because that would disprove their "gov't is the answer" playbook from being viable. The better we get at anything in this country the finer the points of distinction become and the harder the progs will fight to make us believe those differences are important and require their special touch to correct.

In this sense, Step[hens allows us to think of gun control as people control and to then contemplate the ones who lust after having that very controlling position over us.

Rusty said...

Michael K said...
I am so old that I remember when Chicago banned handguns and my father turned his in. Fortunately, I already had all his shotguns. That was before 1969 because he died in January of that year.

That was when there were not many shootings in Chicago.

I would be willing to talk about repeal of the 19th. How about we talk about that ?


That was back when carrying a loaded handgun in your car was a misdemeanor. I worked in some neighborhoods where that was a comforting option.

Maddad said...

Still haven't heard a conservative pundit say (or write) this garbage.

Sigivald said...

"Conservative" ought to be in quotes there.

(I mean, I don't know Stephens, and I'm not a Conservative or even conservative-little-c.

Maybe Stephens truly, honestly thinks he is "conservative", I dunno.

But "repeal part of the Bill of Rights" is simply not compatible with that word, is it?

What's being conserved there? Where's the "stop!" athwart change?)

(I mean, if it's Dark Swiftian Humor, it doesn't work as well - imagine Swift in a Britain where "eat Irish babies" was what some British party had been proposing for years.

Satire that is literally what the opposition has often proposed is ... a rough gig.)

jim said...

Few cultural curses as hard to kill as a blood fetish.