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Thread: A Modest Proposal - Johnathan Swift Satire about Mandatory Gun Ownership in Washington Times -

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    Regular Member Thundar's Avatar
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    The Washington Post – Opinion


    A modest proposal

    By Al Horne

    Tuesday, November 17, 2009

    With Congress tied up over health reform -- legislation whose initial, much-discussed goal was to extend health insurance to as many as 47 million uninsured Americans -- this may be as good a time as any to propose another, less divisive reform.

    The FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms estimated in 2008 that more than 250 million guns were owned by U.S. citizens. Since President Obama's election last November, newspapers and electronic media have reported a sharp increase in U.S. gun sales, spurred by rumors that the new administration had secret plans to block gun sales to law-abiding Americans. Normally, about 4.5 million guns are sold in the United States each year, so this surge in sales means that Americans own roughly 260 million guns, in a population of nearly 309 million.

    Surveys indicate that gun ownership is not spread evenly across U.S. households. In fact, chances are that a substantial proportion of U.S. gun owners have more than one weapon, so it's quite possible that fewer than 200 million Americans own those 260 million guns. That means there may be more than 100 million citizens left unprotected against their gun-owning fellow citizens.

    Surely everyone can agree that this is an outrage. Moreover, it is an outrage that Congress can easily fix, without months of committee meetings, town halls or tea parties. All that is required is a bipartisan, pro-constitutional bill to extend the Second Amendment's protection of gun ownership to all Americans, whether they like it or not.

    Under such legislation -- let's call it the Gun Insurance Act of 2009 -- every American would be required to buy some kind of gun. Those who cannot afford even the simplest weapon -- say, those whose 2009 annual income is less than twice the federal poverty level -- could be issued $500 vouchers that would be valid only at gun shops or gun shows, and would have to be used before the 2010 Census. (Just think: What a stimulus to private enterprise all these gun sales would provide, and how many new gun-selling jobs would be created!)

    How would the law be enforced? Census takers could verify that everyone they count has a weapon in working condition, and those census takers who survive could report all non-complying Americans to the FBI so it could notify local police departments, which would issue citations for whatever fines Congress chooses to impose. (Note that this proposed legislation would not require creating any new bureaucracy, public option or death panels.) Of course, illegal immigrants would not receive vouchers, would not be required to buy guns and would not be counted in the Census.

    So there it is: a modest proposal even Max Baucus and Chuck Grassley can agree on. If we're willing to require people to buy health insurance, why not require them to buy guns? Sure, maybe the Congressional Budget Office could overestimate its cost, and some wimpy liberals could file a court challenge, but the Supreme Court would slap it down on a clear 5-to-4 vote. Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid, here's one issue where you can count on at least a couple of Republican votes.

    The writer, a former Post reporter and editor, lives in Alexandria.
    He wore his gun outside his pants for all the honest world to see. Pancho & Lefty

    The millions of people, armed in the holy cause of liberty, and in such a country as that which we possess, are invincible by any force which our enemy can send against us....There is no retreat but in submission and slavery! ...The war is inevitableand let it come! I repeat it, Sir, let it come . PATRICK HENRY speech 1776

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    LOL... wishful thinking but hey, it's good for a chuckle.

    Though Vermont is doing something not that far from this.

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    Best thing to do is start a grass roots activist group to oppose this idea with great pregidous. The Dems, thinking that if the masses don't like such legislation it musta good idea for themselves,would then cram it down our throats, just to be contrary.

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    Regular Member KansasMustang's Avatar
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    Forgot which town it is that requires all able bodied citizens to own a firearm but it sounds good to me.
    Thought that was what the Constitution kind of said that a "Well regulated militia,,,"
    Laws that forbid the carrying of arms... disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes... Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man. Thomas Jefferson

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    KansasMustang wrote:
    Forgot which town it is that requires all able bodied citizens to own a firearm but it sounds good to me.
    Thought that was what the Constitution kind of said that a "Well regulated militia,,,"
    Kennesaw, Georgia. I would LOVE to see that law applied nationwide.

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    Founder's Club Member protias's Avatar
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    Crashbox wrote:
    KansasMustang wrote:
    Forgot which town it is that requires all able bodied citizens to own a firearm but it sounds good to me.
    Thought that was what the Constitution kind of said that a "Well regulated militia,,,"
    Kennesaw, Georgia. I would LOVE to see that law applied nationwide.
    Me too. I would love to be able to carry, when and where I please.
    No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms. Thomas Jefferson (1776)

    If you go into a store, with a gun, and rob it, you have forfeited your right to not get shot - Joe Deters, Hamilton County (Cincinnati) Prosecutor

    I ask sir, what is the militia? It is the whole people except for a few politicians. - George Mason (father of the Bill of Rights and The Virginia Declaration of Rights)

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