A Democratic congressman from California is proposing forcing lawful gun owners across America to turn in their guns, sell them to police or face prosecution- a rather unconstitutional measure that will no doubt stir up fears among the nation’s vast gun community.
In an op-ed posted earlier this morning, Congressman Eric Swalwell laid it all out :
“Ban assault weapons and buy them back,” he wrote. “It might cost $15 billion, but we can afford it. Consider it an investment in our most important right, the right to live.”
The San Francisco-area native plead on the grounds of emotion, bringing up stories of violent incidents as he tried to justify his argument.
“The Parkland teens have taught us there is no right more important than every student’s right to come home after class,” he added. “The right to live is supreme over any other.”
Of course, this would involve confiscation and mandatory buyback programs, things most gun owners -particularly owners of America’s most popular and controversial rifle- aren’t to keen on considering.
“We should ban possession of military-style semiautomatic assault weapons, we should buy back such weapons from all who choose to abide by the law, and we should criminally prosecute any who choose to defy it by keeping their weapons,” he wrote. “The ban would not apply to law enforcement agencies or shooting clubs.”
Under the congressman’s proposal, the federal government should offer up to $1,000 for every weapon covered by a new ban (which would hardly cover the average mid-to-high-end long rifle), estimating that it would take $15 billion to buy back roughly 15 million weapons.
Keep in mind that “assault weapon” is a deliberately-vague political term that, depending on the usage, can range from a single type of firearm to everything short of revolvers and lever-action rifles (though even models of the latter example can meet the definition, depending on which lawmaker is writing the bill).
According to Swalwell, “an assault weapon, then, is a hand-held weapon of war, capable of spraying a crowd with more lethal fire in seconds.”
This could apply to just about anything short of a musket (and even then, it would depend on the shot used).
Swalwell’s argument -while alarming- is exactly what gun rights groups such as the Gun Owners of America and the National Rifle Association want to hear, as their members frequently express concern of a tyrannical government wishing to confiscate their weapons.
With firearms likely outnumbering US citizens within the nation’s borders, this would prove no easy feat- provided one could even account for every weapon, get the public to surrender their arms or even get military and police to comply with the orders to seize weapons.
As for Swalwell, it’s pretty obvious by his op-ed as to what direction he wants America to go towards.
“Australia got it right,” he wrote.