Speaking at Benedict College in South Carolina on March 6, President Obama said the “Second Amendment … is important,” that it is “part of our culture” and “part of who were are.” Then he quickly added, “But what we also have to recognize is, is that our homicide rates are so much higher than other industrialized countries–by like a mile.”
So, the Second Amendment is important but…
Moreover, Obama hinted that the individual right to bear arms–the very right protected by the Second Amendment–is the result of a Supreme Court interpretation. On June 22, Breitbart News reported that The Washington Post espoused this same liberal talking point, claiming that the Supreme Court created an individual right to keep and bear arms via the District of Columbia v. Heller (2008) decision.
In other words, prior to 2008, there was no individual right to keep and bear arms. It wasn’t what our Founding Fathers intended and it wasn’t what generation upon generation of Americans from 1791 to 2008 believed and lived by. It’s all based on a decision by a group of justices.
In his speech, aired on C-SPAN, Obama said:
We have a long tradition of gun rights and gun ownership in this country. The Second Amendment has been interpreted by the Supreme Court to mean the people have the right to bear arms. There are a lot of law-abiding, responsible gun owners who use it for protection or sport. They handle their weapons properly. There are traditions of families passing down [hunting] from father to son, or daughter … and that is important; that’s part of who we are. But what we also have to recognize is, is that our homicide rates are so much higher than other industrialized nations–by like a mile.
And most of that is attributable to the easy, ready, availability of firearms, particularly handguns.
However, the gun control lobby’s relentless claim that America’s homicide rate is so much higher than other industrialized countries breaks down under scrutiny.
For example, in August 2013, Breitbart News reported on a study in the Harvard Journal of Law & Public Policy which showed that the murder rate in heavily gun-controlled Russia was approximately 20.52 per 100,000 people in 2002. A high point for America was 6.6 per 100,000 people in 1993, and that rate fell to 3.2 per 100,000 by 2011, after the number of privately owned guns in America went from 192 million in 1994 to 310 million in 2009.
So, 20.52 per 100,000 people are murdered in Russia versus America’s 6.6 per 100,000–later to be 3.2 per 100,000–yet, according to President Obama, America’s murder rate is, “like a mile” higher than that of other industrialized countries.
Follow AWR Hawkins on Twitter @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.