No sooner had New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced her country’s sweeping ban of so-called “assault weapons” and “military-style” firearms than did the establishment U.S. media begin a new wave of punditry about all things gun related, and the common theme is that the Kiwis do not have a constitutionally-protected right to keep and bear arms.
Here’s how a piece in Slate put it: “New Zealand does not have the right of gun ownership written into its constitution, which, no matter how you interpret the Second Amendment, certainly is an advantage in broad gun reform. The gun culture of New Zealand is not as steeped in its foundational myths as the gun culture of the U.S. is.”
CNN also cut to the chase, observing “The right to own a gun isn’t enshrined in New Zealand’s constitution. And the aftermath of the Christchurch massacre shows there’s a greater sense of urgency to enact national gun-control legislation in New Zealand after a mass shooting than in the United States.”
The swiftness of New Zealand’s action demonstrates the difference between living in a country where government can get away with this sort of thing, and living in a Constitutional Republic.
Sandy Hook happened 6 years ago and we can’t even get the Senate to hold a vote on universal background checks w/ #HR8.
Christchurch happened, and within days New Zealand acted to get weapons of war out of the consumer market.
Sorry. No data so far.
This is what leadership looks like ⬇️ https://t.co/TcdR63anBt
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) March 21, 2019
Gun owners are reacting with some alarm at the way Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT, but running as a Democrat for president) and freshman Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez quickly weighed in early Thursday with tweets supporting the New Zealand gun ban.
New Zealand’s Governor General “signed an order to reclassify some semi-automatic weapons as ‘military style’,” according to CNN.
This is what real action to stop gun violence looks like. We must follow New Zealand's lead, take on the NRA and ban the sale and distribution of assault weapons in the United States. https://t.co/lSAisDG9Ur
— Bernie Sanders (@BernieSanders) March 21, 2019
“As a result,” the report noted, “many people who legally owned certain firearms will no longer be able to possess them on their existing license conditions.”
One fact that seems to have been lost by the establishment media was that in his manifesto, the Christchurch suspect made it clear that one of his motives in doing the mass shootings was to create a debate that could lead to a political fight over the Second Amendment in this country.
In his lengthy manifesto, accused killer Brenton Tarrant wrote “Finally, (I did this) to create conflict between the two ideologies within the United States on the ownership of firearms in order to further the social, cultural, political and racial divide within the United states (sic). This conflict over the 2nd amendment and the attempted removal of firearms rights will ultimately result in a civil war that will eventually balkanize the US along political, cultural and, most importantly, racial lines. This balkanization of the US will not only result in the racial separation of the people within the United States ensuring the future of the White race on the North American continent, but also ensuring the death of the ‘melting pot’ pipe dream.”
Facing at least one count of murder, the accused mass killer—the death count remains at 50—appears to have gotten exactly what he wanted.
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