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Election 2012: A Turning Point For Gun Rights

Friday, February 17, 2012

By Wayne LaPierre, NRA Executive Vice President

In the coming months before the Nov. 6, 2012 elections, citizens like you will be the key to ending the Barack Obama regime—a regime defined from the get-go by the words of Valerie Jarrett, the president’s closest advisor: “Obama is prepared to really take power and begin to rule day one.”

Working together, we can end that “rule” and take back our freedom as the birthright of every American that no president, no bureaucrat, no judge and no politician can ever take away.

If we fail, if Barack Obama wields the enormous power of the presidency for another four years, the Right to Keep and Bear Arms could well perish in a Supreme Court heartbeat.

It is a near certainty that the next president of the United States could appoint as many as three new U.S. Supreme Court justices. If those appointments are made by Barack Obama and supported by his rubber-stamp majority in the U.S. Senate—led by the likes of Chuck Schumer and Dianne Feinstein—gun owners will see all of our victories of the past 30 years undone by a radical activist court.

Those gains would be reversed through endless legal challenges by the gun-ban crowd led by billionaire gun banners like New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and globalist George Soros.

With the current delicate, one-vote U.S. Supreme Court majority first declaring the District of Columbia gun ban unconstitutional, then striking down the Chicago gun ban, those decisions could easily be undone if the 5-4 margin were reversed as aging or ill justices retire. In the aftermath of those two landmark decisions—D.C. and Chicago—other anti-gun laws have fallen across the country. But those remarkable victories for freedom are temporary, hanging by a single vote on the court.

An Obama majority on the Supreme Court would uphold gun registration and licensing, and rule that only the government has a right to guns, not individuals like you—giving the government more and more power over gun ownership until you and I are disarmed once and for all.

For a vision of the kind of radicals who will be packed on the court by Obama and a willing Senate, look to Associate Justice Sonia Sotomayor who lied her way through her July 2009 Senate confirmation, brazenly telling the Judiciary Committee that the 2008 Heller case striking down the D.C. gun ban was precedent:

“I understand the individual right fully that the Supreme Court recognized in Heller.” She termed it “settled law.”

Yet, months later with the high court’s decision striking down the Chicago gun ban and extending the individual Right to Keep and Bear Arms to every corner of the nation, she unmasked herself as a dedicated enemy of the Second Amendment.

It wasn’t that as a justice she quietly voted to prevent Otis McDonald, a courageous elderly black Chicagoan, from exercising his right to own a handgun. Sotomayor’s stand on the court was an in-your-face-affront to the Senate and every American citizen who took her at her word.

She joined Justice Stephen Breyer, who wrote: “I can find nothing in the Second Amendment’s text, history, or underlying rationale that could warrant characterizing it as ‘fundamental’ insofar as it seeks to protect the keeping and bearing of arms for private self-defense purposes.”

As gun owners across the nation celebrated the full recognition of the Founders’ vision of liberty, the most sobering aspect of the decision was the cynical, angry dissent written by Justice John Paul Stevens:

“The Framers did not write the Second Amendment in order to protect a private right of self-defense. ... By its terms, the Second Amendment does not apply to the States: read properly, it does not even apply to individuals outside the militia context.”

Had the one vote margin on the court gone the other way, Stevens’ and Breyer’s vision of a court-sanctioned disarmed citizenry would have opened the floodgate for gun bans based on the District of Columbia/Chicago models in every urban area in the nation. Mayor Bloomberg’s cabal of big-city politicians would have declared open season on their gun-owning citizens.

Just how tenuous the pro-Second Amendment decisions in Heller and McDonald remain was spelled out by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who told an elite Harvard Club gathering that the high court in McDonald and Heller was “grievously mistaken,” and that the minority opinions would ultimately be used to rewrite history, making the Second Amendment a “collective right connected to the militia.”

Were that to happen, the brilliant light of freedom that NRA has fought so hard to protect would be extinguished across the nation. Our individual liberty—the Right to Keep and Bear Arms—would be seen as a government-granted privilege exercised at local option.

Such a world is just one U.S. Supreme Court appointment away. It is just one election away—Nov. 6, 2012—an election that represents a turning point for our nation.

It is up to us and the vanguard of informed supporters of the Second Amendment to spread the truth to friends, family, neighbors, colleagues and co-workers. We have time to stop the Obama juggernaut, and to make history together, but we must start now—not only to save our guns but to save our heritage and our values. The future of freedom in America depends on it.

To read more articles from the March issue of America's 1st Freedom, click here.

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Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.