Republicans Literally Fire Back at Powerful Missouri Gun Control Bill

My Wednesday column and another example of how all politics is state and local:

You’ve probably never heard of Missouri state Rep. Rory Ellinger (D-University City). Last week, Ellinger introduced a bill that represents the most powerful assault weapons ban to date, and when you hear about its content, you might not think it’s such a good idea. But I do. I think it’s groundbreaking and even though it probably won’t pass it could lead the way to lesser but achievable gun control laws in that state.

Ellinger’s HB545 would not only ban the sale of assault weapons, it would also ban the manufacturing and importation of assault weapons. If that wasn’t strong enough, the bill would criminalize the possession of an assault weapon following a 90-day period during which owners would be forced by law to relinquish their assault weapons to authorities.

Again, there’s no chance of the bill passing and Ellinger readily admits it. But it’s a stroke of genius nonetheless. Not necessarily because I think it’s a fantastic idea (frankly, a buy-back program is more effective), but because it’s strategically brilliant. [continue reading here]

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  • GrafZeppelin127

    I’m still having fun (and I do mean fun) with a gun fan on this thread over at HuffPo. I’m pretending to argue the notion, which is absurd but is the logical extension of a lot of pro-gun arguments I’ve heard and read, that guns should be free because making me pay for the one I want is an infringement of my unconditional God-given natural right to keep and bear Arms. The Second Amendment doesn’t specify that only the government is prohibited from infringing the right; for a manufacturer or seller to demand money in exchange for the Arms I want is at least a precondition, at most an active impediment, for which the Second Amendment does not allow.

    See, this is how I know that the whole right-wing/”conservative”/GOP/Tea Party thing is an improv act: because I can do it, because it’s so damned easy to play the part. I can play the role of wingnut without a trace of irony, without exaggerations or distortions that would necessarily give me away, without anyone on either side realizing that I’m pulling their leg. I doubt wingnuts could do the opposite; their understanding of “liberals” is entirely grounded in absurd caricatures, so they’d immediately give themselves away if they tried it by, inter alia, saying things that no real liberal would ever actually say.

    • mrbrink

      “…when something is so expensive that a person cannot buy it, the item’s cost is said to be “prohibitive.”

      Damn money is always coming between me and my unalienable rights & freedoms!

      I think you may have found the magical 2nd amendment wormhole in the gun-nut-continuum they’ve been searching for their whole lives, Graf’.

      This is a dangerous game you’re playing! Hahaha!

      • GrafZeppelin127

        That’s probably true. But arguing bullshit that you don’t really believe is a lot more fun than trying to convince a crazy person of something reasonable, because there’s no frustration factor.

      • GrafZeppelin127

        BTW, if I decide to do a Daily Kos diary about this, can I use that “magical 2nd Amendment wormhole in the gun-nut continuum” thing as a title?

        • mrbrink

          Ha ha! I would be dishonest if I said I didn’t consider it just a silly little rhetorical byproduct of your uniquely enlightening argument. Thanks for that, Graf’. You may know I’ve long considered your debates in the trenches of the HuffPo comment section a public service. People read those comments. Bob receives thousands of comments on his posts at the Huff’. I am absolutely certain you have improved the critical thinking skills of everyone you come into contact with. I can vouch for that personally.

          • GrafZeppelin127

            Wow; that’s quite a compliment. I’m fahrklempt. Thanks very much.

          • GrafZeppelin127
          • mrbrink

            Ha! Thank you, Graf’. You’re such a mature and thorough craftsman of language and logic. It’s always an education. I can’t believe you pulled that title off. Well played.

    • http://www.twitter.com/bobcesca_go Bob Cesca

      Outstanding point.

    • MrDHalen

      I’ve been presenting a scaling argument. If the government can prohibit me from owning an F-16, why can’t they prohibit me from owning an AR-15? If I can “Bear Arms”, why am I capped at handheld assault weapons? As a pilot, I would love to own an F-16, but the government is preventing me from owning one. That’s my question to Republican law makers, “Do you support my right to own and operate an F-16 in U.S airspace?” And, if not, “How is it different than an AR-15?”

      • http://www.politicalruminations.com/ nicole

        Excellent points!

  • GrafZeppelin127

    More fun here.

    • BuffaloBuckeye

      Graf, I’ve got to and it to you; that is one helluva business plan. First, you have firearms given to you, then you get to cash in on buyback programs. Brilliant. Well played, sir.

  • mrbrink

    “So suddenly Ellinger’s law doesn’t seem so crazy.”

    Ellinger’s Law: In American politics, when the crazy is a rockin’, always come a knockin’!

    I don’t know, but this should be a thing, damn it. Great column, Bob.

    • http://www.politicalruminations.com/ nicole

      As a strategy, it has definite promise. In fact, I remember using that very same strategy, with some success, with my parental units as a teenager. :)

      It was an excellent column!

  • http://www.politicalruminations.com/ nicole

    Bob, please put the FB & Twitter buttons back!

  • muselet

    The first person Eric Burlison talks to in his video is a woman who appears to be in her late 20s or early 30s who complains that Rory Ellinger’s bill would make her grandfather turn in his guns. That, making some reasonable assumptions, means that her grandfather is likely somewhere between his late 60s and his late 70s. And owns assault weapons. Plural.

    Does that thought trouble anyone else?

    –alopecia