‘For too long we have looked to elected officials to solve America’s gun violence crisis…’
(Dan E. Way, Liberty Headlines) David Hogg, a left-wing student activist and survivor of the 2017 Parkland, Florida, school shooting is again pushing gun-control measures as recent events bring it back to the forefront of national debate.
Hogg, who co-founded the anti-gun group March for Our Lives, issued a statement picked up by CBS News blaming the attacks on the National Rifle Association—the nation’s leading advocate for Second Amendment rights and a longtime bogeyman of liberal talking points.
“For too long we have looked to elected officials to solve America’s gun violence crisis, and time and time again, they have fallen to the pressure of NRA donations and the status quo,” Hogg said. “Their failure to do their jobs has had deadly consequences.”
According to the Center for Responsive Politics’s OpenSecrets.org database, the NRA was not even among the top 50 political donors in the 2018 election cycle. That list is heavy with unions, teacher and environmentalist groups, Amazon, Microsoft, and other progressive organizations.
Progressives have embraced Hogg, even though he maintains armed security, as a spokesman who might lead to increased youth voting.
But not all young people are in sync. He has been criticized for his anti-gun positions in the past by March for Our Rights, a student-run group that supports the Second Amendment.
Kyle Kashuv, Hogg’s former classmate and fellow survivor of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting, promotes Second Amendment rights, and has been critical of Hogg’s anti-constitutional stances.
Hogg’s plan focuses on getting to the root causes of both mass shootings that have occurred most recently in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio—as well as the much more common everyday gun violence plaguing Chicago and other cities that already have strict gun-control laws.
Hogg repeated the mantra many progressives have voiced in ridiculing religious-based response particularly to gun violence: “It is clear that the time for thoughts and prayers has come and gone. It is now time for real change and real action,” he said.
The virtue-signaling Peace Plan for a Safer America includes a variety of progressive touchstones.
It says gun violence has “many root causes, including hate, poverty, and despair. It’s a deeply intersectional issue, inextricably bound with our long journey for racial justice, economic justice, immigrant rights, and the rights of our LGBTQ allies.”
It calls for “holding an unpatriotic gun lobby and gun industry accountable” for weakening gun laws.
It would also appoint a federal director of gun violence protection; and it would designate a law-enforcement agency to oversee mandatory background checks, in-person interviews, personal references, rigorous gun-safety training and a 10-day waiting period to purchase a gun.
Fees would be charged to obtain a national firearm license, and licenses would have to be renewed annually after meeting those same requirements in a refresher round.
A national firearms-sale registry would be created to hold gun owners responsible for crimes committed with their weapons, and to disarm them if they are determined to be a danger to themselves or others.
A federal gun-buyback and disposal program, and a ban on assault weapons and high-capacity magazines would be enacted.
Assault weapons already are illegal. Gun-control advocates improperly use that phrase to include semi-automatic weapons and guns that are similar in appearance but not operation to military grade weapons.
Many portions of the plan likely would face stiff constitutional challenges. Plan writers gave passing reference to that.
It calls for the U.S. Supreme Court decision in District of Columbia v. Heller to be “re-examined.”
That decision affirmed citizens’ constitutional right to keep and bear arms for self-defense and other purposes not connected to state militia involvement.
The U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit also found Washington, D.C.’s concealed carry restrictions unconstitutional in Grace v. District of Columbia.
Critics of disarming gun owners through so-called red-flag laws worry that they could deprive citizens of their constitutional due-process rights.