Thomas Sowell, are you reading? I've got a new chapter for your book "The Vision of the Anointed: Self Congratulation As a Basis for Social Policy."
Washington Post columnist Courtland Milloy condescended to the great unwashed of the District of Columbia in his March 14 column as he dismissed the desire to exercise one's 2nd Amendment rights as lethal childishness. Milloy was reacting to a federal court ruling that invalidated D.C.'s gun ban on Friday.:
Perhaps it's my inner child, but a part of me secretly cheers the libertarian. Especially those wild and crazy guys at the Cato Institute. The Washington think tank thinks government ought not try to stop people from using whatever drugs they want -- cocaine, heroin, alcohol, cigarettes, you name it -- or from gambling or watching porn online.
And now it's won its argument to let you keep a handgun in your home in the District, one of the most violent cities in the nation.
It's as if Cato took its motto from the Isley Brothers' 1969 hit "It's Your Thing (Do What You Wanna Do)."
Right on, says my inner child; you can't tell me who to sock it to.
In shooting down the city's strict gun control law last week, a three-judge panel agreed with arguments by Cato that the Second Amendment gives us the right to own handguns and that we are not too clumsy and ill-tempered to handle them safely. The libertarian view is: Trust the people more than the government.
Thomas Jefferson once said: "Men by their constitutions are naturally divided into two parties: 1) Those who fear and distrust the people. . . . 2) Those who identify themselves with the people, have confidence in them, cherish and consider them as the most honest and safe . . . depository of the public interest."
Catoites, and my inner child, fall into the latter category. But the adult knows better. Several studies have shown that a gun in the home is up to 22 times more likely to be used for suicide or to kill a family member than to fend off a burglar. Surely the Founding Fathers would not have given the right to bear arms to a homegrown militia that was more likely to shoot itself in the foot than stop a British invasion.
I might update this post a bit later with links to more information discrediting the studies Milloy cites. Feel free to recommend good pro-gun rights bloggers who have addressed the point and look for updates accordingly.