From the Brady Center event, I think it’s worthwhile to point out a question asked by the Center to Justice Stevens on the subject of those horribly, wrongly-informed American people who believe they have rights even though the Brady lawyers know better:
I don’t care how long I’ve been working the activism side for this issue, it will never cease to amaze me the sheer number of gun owners who believe that just because they – and likely all of their friends and family – believe something to be a right, it’s protected by the legal system. That’s simply not true. When it comes to keeping gun ownership legal, it really doesn’t matter what the founding documents actually say. All that ultimately matters is how the government interprets it and enforces any laws they pass on the issue of gun ownership.
It kind of reminds me of a story I was told by a Massachusetts gun owner who was talking to a Pennsylvania gun owner at the NRA convention in Pittsburgh back in 2004. After hearing about the variety of gun laws there and the licensing nightmare that determines what kinds of guns you’re allowed to own and how you can use them, the Pennsylvania guy just responded with, “But this is America!” Yeah, buddy, it is America. Welcome. I just hoped he started paying more attention to the issue after hearing those stories.