That National Rifle Association rebuked California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) on Thursday for proposing to enshrine gun control into the United States Constitution.
What did Newsom propose?
The far-left governor is proposing a 28th Amendment to enshrine four gun-control regulations into the Constitution.
The proposed amendment would, according to Newsom:
- Raise “the federal minimum age to purchase a firearm from 18 to 21”
- Mandate “universal background checks to prevent truly dangerous people from purchasing a gun that could be used in a crime”
- Institute “a reasonable waiting period for all gun purchases”
- Prohibit “civilian purchase of assault weapons that serve no other purpose than to kill as many people as possible in a short amount of time — weapons of war our nation’s founders never foresaw”
Some Americans might find two or three of his proposals reasonable; after all, the Supreme Court has ruled that reasonable restrictions can be placed on the Second Amendment.
But there is a fundamental problem with his last proposal: it’s too broad.
What constitutes an “assault weapon”? And even if we can hammer out a definition, does everyone agree that such firearms “serve no other purpose” but “to kill as many people as possible”? Indeed, Americans use semi-automatic rifles — those that Newsom would call “assault weapons” — every day in safe manner without murdering people.
In his announcement, Newsom claimed his proposal leaves the Second Amendment “unchanged” while “respecting America’s gun-owning tradition.”
And in a video, Newsom deployed a caricature polemic against defenders of the Second Amendment.
He claimed gun control opponents believe “thoughts and prayers are the best we can do” in response to gun violence. Of course, serious people do not say that is the solution. Rather, people offer their “thoughts and prayers” in response to tragedy.
What was the response?
The NRA condemned Newsom’s proposal as demonstrating “his unhinged contempt” for the Second Amendment.
“Newsom’s latest publicly [sic] stunt once again shows that his unhinged contempt for the right to self-defense has no bounds,” the organization said in a statement.
“California is a beacon for violence because of Newsom’s embrace of policies that champion the criminal and penalize the law-abiding,” the statement continued. “That is why the majority of Americans rightfully reject his California-style gun control.”
Fortunately, the amendment is not likely to become law.
According to Article V of the Constitution, two-thirds of states must agree to convene an amendment convention. Then, to become an amendment, a proposal needs support from three-quarters of states. The proposal will almost not receive the support it needs.
The last constitutional amendment was ratified in 1992.
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