“Hey hey, ho ho. The NRA has got to go!”
“What do we want? Gun control! When do we want it? Now!”
Those chants rang out on the March 14 National Walkout Day, one of many events in the wake of the massacre in Parkland, Florida. Whoopi Goldberg joined students in New York and Elizabeth Warren, Massachusetts Democrat, tweeted, “These kids are leading the charge against gun violence – and I’m proud to be here fighting alongside them.”
The soundtrack was similar this past weekend at the March for Our Lives rally in Washington, with an estimated 200,000 in attendance. Yolanda Renee King, the nine-year-old granddaughter of Martin Luther King, proclaimed her dream, “that this should be a gun-free world. Period.” Despite similar activism across the country, not all millennial students are marching to the same drumbeat.
As National Public Radio noted, pollsters find that those from ages 18-29 were only one percentage point more likely to want stricter gun laws than 57 percent of their peers. In similar style, the Pew Research Center found that on 50 percent of those ages 18-36 said gun laws in the U.S. should be more strict. Millennials were more inclined to oppose assault-style weapons and high-capacity magazines, but as Kim Parker of Pew Research told NPR, “What we’re hearing now in the immediate aftermath of Parkland might not be representative of what a whole generation feels.”
Jordan Riger, treasurer of Students for the Second Amendment at the University of Delaware, told NPR she took an NRA course on pistol shooting and regards firearms as tools for self-defense. Students for the Second Amendment president Jeremy Grunden explained, “we're supposed to be a well-armed and well-maintained militia and all that. Quite frankly, we need that and plus more.”
In other words, “Ho ho, hey hey, the Second Amendment’s gotta stay.” As they hold their constitutional ground, millennials might research the gun-control campaigns of totalitarian states.
Democrats and their media-celebrity allies seem to believe that in National Socialist Germany anybody could walk into Klaus’s Gun Store and buy a Sturmgewehr with a 30-round magazine. As Stephen P. Halbrook showed in Gun Control in the Third Reich: Disarming the Jews and “Enemies of the State,” Nazi Germany wasn’t like that at all.
Before the Nazis took power, the liberal Weimar Republic sought to register, regulate and prohibit firearms. A 1926 order demanded surrender of all firearms and a 1926 Bavarian law barred Gypsies from owning guns. The Nazis took power in 1933 and in their view, nobody needed a firearm for self-defense when the police protected society. Sport shooting and hunting were not a “need,” as determined by the government.
The Nazis grabbed the registration records of the Weimar Republic and denied gun ownership to all groups not in line with National Socialism. The 1938 arrest record of Albert Flatow, who won an Olympic medal for Germany in 1896, said “arms in the hands of Jews are a danger to public safety.”
A disarmed populace, Halbrook warns, “is obviously more susceptible to totalitarian rule and is less able to resist oppression.” On the other hand, “an armed populace with a political culture of allowed constitutional and natural rights that they are motivated to fight for is less likely to fall under the sway of a tyranny.” So Jeremy Grunden is not making some academic point.
Alert millennials might also monitor efforts to disarm the public under the guise of health concerns. Sen. Martin Heinrich, New Mexico Democrat, calls for repeal of the Dickey Amendment, which restricted the Centers for Disease Control from spending public funds to research what he calls “gun violence and its effect on public health.”
Heinrich finds support from Garen Wintemute of the UC Davis Violence Prevention Research Program, whose first project was “a survey that looks at who owns guns, why they own them and how they use firearms.” Millennials should be wary and also note the selective terminology following mass shootings.
On November 5, 2009, at Fort Hood, Major Nidal Hasan used privately purchased handguns to murder 13 unarmed American soldiers, including private Francheska Velez, 21, who was pregnant. For the administration of POTUS 44, this terrorist mass murder failed to qualify as “gun violence.” Instead the president called it “workplace violence.”
Students might wonder how they would respond if national leaders called the Parkland massacre an example of “school violence.” The root cause of such atrocities is not guns but the will to kill.
That was also on display in the bombing campaign of Mark Conditt, who shipped his deadly packages under the name “Kelly Killmore.” His five blasts killed two and injured four, but no campaign of anti-bomb demonstrations followed.
The left’s default response to mass shootings by criminals is to deprive law-abiding citizens of their rights under the Second Amendment. In that cause, the leftist-celebrity axis seeks to exploit and indoctrinate students.
“If we want to put an end to the ugly walkout scenes that we witnessed,” writes Daniel Greenfield, “we need to support the K-12 Code of Ethics and drain the educational swamp before it swallows up our children’s minds. The March for Our Lives should be met with a March for Our Minds.”