The Great Divide

As I tried to call Senator Dianne Feinstein’s office to attempt to get some information on a subject of hers that she allegedly fights for, I was casually dismissed by some incompetent intern and told to email it in. That would be fine if it were not time sensitive and of some importance. What could I possibly be so impudent about? What could I conceivably be so pushy about? Oh, it’s nothing really, just the horribly phrased Second Amendment.

There has been such contention and money to be made off this single issue that I firmly believe that neither side has a vested interest in actually solving the issue to the benefit of all. So in lieu of the failures of the Office of California Senator Dianne Feinstein, I will propose to you, the reader of this article, a simple concept that does a complete end-around on the Second Amendment.

According to Gunviolencearchive.org, a not for profit corporation founded in 2013 to provide free online public access to accurate information about gun-related violence, as of the time of this writing, the number of incidents related to gun violence that have occurred in 2018 stands at 22,882. Let us take a further look at some other numbers of importance; remember it is May 25 at 1:45 PM EST as of this writing. The total number of deaths, as of this moment, is 5,647. 5,647 people have lost their lives to firearms. There have been 10,344 injuries related to gun violence and the number of children (age 0-11) injured or killed by firearm-related violence stands at 247. The number of teens (age 12-17) killed or injured is 1,025 and there have been 104 cases of mass shootings. Those numbers are staggering, but remember, we are only near the end of May.

Because gun violence in this country is so profitable, according to Jarrett Murphy of The Nation in an article that dates back to 2012, “from 2007-2011 the number of firearms manufactured in the United States grew by 63 percent, led by pistols, which posted a 104 percent jump” in that same time frame. Gun zealots take the bait all of the time when a mass shooting occurs and the threat of former President Obama “taking away” their firearms further fueled the absurd levels in which firearms proliferated in this country.

One more piece of the puzzle is that while Wall Street took a moment of silence for the kids of Parkland High School on February 15th, 2018, by the end of the day, firearm stocks rallied anywhere from 1.4%-5.6%. The NRA puts out a fear-inspiring piece on how big, bad, government is going to redact the Second Amendment and some sort of liberal wing of the government will herd all gun owners in as criminals and ammunition and firearm sales spike.

The hundred and first mass shooting occurred in Santa Fe, Texas last week. Ten people are confirmed dead. If this were a terrorist attack by a foreign national, people would gladly trade in rights for security. It is the third instance of a gunman on a school campus in eight days. The shooters all Americans, who own these firearms, typically, in all the legal ways that every other owner comes across their firearms. There is silence from the same segment that would scream for action to be done if it was anything else than a troubled person with access to firearms.

There is a reason for all of this background, there has been a debate for decades by pro and gun control types. There has been a lot of profit for the gun industry and it’s all hung on the Constitutionality of owning firearms. Any move to curtail the ownership of any weapon has been met with litigation and partisan politics from the Supreme Court of the United States. I believe I have found a way around that.

It is so simple that it is stupid. I went online to see the price of the cheapest and most commonly used handgun ammunition and found it was the 9mm round. I looked at the price of 500 rounds and found that the average price for it was around 80 dollars. Eighty dollars to obtain 500 rounds. In another case, a box of a 1,000 rounds of that caliber was being sold for $199.99 on Sportsmansguide.com. No need for background, no hoops to jump through, just point and click.

What if that same box of 500 rounds cost $800.00? The box of 1,000 cost $2,000.00? How many lives could be saved if we increased the price of ammunition? You don’t have to stop people from buying their “must have” firearms. Want an AR-15? Have at it, Tiger! Just be ready to pay significantly more than you currently would need to. This takes away any unconstitutional aspect of gun control. Even better, use the worn out phrase “States’ rights” as an argument and amazingly the 10th Amendment comes into play. What is the 10th Amendment? “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”

Nowhere in the Constitution does it state that ammunition is a protected class. Ergo, if you introduce legislation on a state-by-state basis of a fully constitutionally acceptable piece of legislation increasing the cost of ammunition, then the ability to use the firearm in any way other than a pre-planned, calculated way is guaranteed. If ammo is not allowed to be purchased in bulk at exceptionally cheap prices, how often do you think that responsible, legal, firearm-owning citizens of this country will just let it lie around? How would the value of ammo be perceived? Will people treat it like diamonds and ensure that no one but themselves touch them? How many other teens will be able to go to school with enough rounds to take out their graduating class?

Using our Constitution to regulate our Constitution is what the Founding Fathers would have wanted. People going into places where children learn to slaughter them is not something that the Founding Fathers would have wanted, no matter what Second Amendment enthusiasts may say. At some point, we are going to have to act, and this measure, if executed correctly, could greatly reduce firearm-related mass shooting in ways that no other measure currently being argued can.

I would ask how many more have to die, but the gun industry, its lobbyists, and its supporters have no set number so it is time we stepped in and did something to end this, as it seems no one else will.

Written by Jason Carney

Born in Massachusetts in 1981, grew up an Army Brat and travelled the world with my father who served as a member of the Special Forces for 24 years. Mother was a strong and dedicated woman with a work ethic second to none. I decided to enlist in the Army National Guard in October 2009, having heard that they deployed more frequently. I have served honorably since then and was accepted into the Army Officer Candidate School before a workplace injury rendered me temporarily disabled.

Grew up studying politics, political figures, discourse, and ideologies of the world as I found politics to be a contact sport for the most hardened of individuals. Started Vets for the 99% in late 2015 to show that Progressive/Left ideology could not only be embraced by every segment of society, but could further the nation as a whole.

Follow Jason on Twitter @TheJasonCarney.

Jason is a Guest Contributor to Progressive Army.

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