The 2012 Democratic National Convention released its party platform today and it quickly drew fire from several points of the political spectrum for its statement on the Second Amendment and firearms ownership. As we did with the corresponding Republican platform section, we include it in its entirety:
“Firearms. We recognize that the individual right to bear arms is an important part of the American tradition, and we will preserve Americans’ Second Amendment right to own and use firearms. We believe that the right to own firearms is subject to reasonable regulation. We understand the terrible consequences of gun violence; it serves as a reminder that life is fragile, and our time here is limited and precious. We believe in an honest, open national conversation about firearms. We can focus on effective enforcement of existing laws, especially strengthening our background check system, and we can work together to enact commonsense improvements – like reinstating the assault weapons ban and closing the gun show loophole – so that guns do not fall into the hands of those irresponsible, law-breaking few.”
So, we again see the rhetorical pattern of a quick acknowledgement that there is a Second Amendment, followed by the call for reasonable regulation, a few words about the terribleness of gun violence and the need for national debate, a pivot to focusing on effective enforcement of existing laws and then the grand finale of bringing back the “assault weapons ban” and closing the “gun show loophole” with the closing phrase that promises what the just aforementioned strictures would – once again – certainly not accomplish.”
For those enjoying the last week of August and who, as a result, may have missed the Republican National Convention’s approved party plank on the Second Amendment, the contrast with what you just read above will be clear and easy to see. We encourage you to read both platforms and draw your own conclusions before you #gunvote on Election Day.