by U.S. Rep. Ron Paul, M.D. (R-TX)
As a United States
Congressman, I take my oath to uphold all of the Constitution and the Bill of
Rights very seriously. Unfortunately, too many in
DC believe they can pick-and-choose which provisions of the constitution they can
uphold. For example, many politicians, judges, and bureaucrats believe they have
the power to disregard our right to own guns, even though the second amendment
explicitly guarantees the people's right to "keep and bear arms."
Like the Founding Fathers, I believe that the right to keep and bear arms is fundamental to a free society. Where law-abiding citizens are most freely allowed to defend themselves, communities are safer, while crime rises when law-abiding people's access to firearms is restricted. Gun laws only disarm those who respect the law. Those with criminal tendencies do not turn in their weapons and reform their ways because government bureaucrats enact statutes that tell them to. Gun control laws turn peaceful citizens into sitting ducks for criminals to prey upon.
Ironically, one of the most draconian gun laws in the nation is in the nation's capital. Banning guns did not make DC safer. In fact crime in DC rose after the gun ban went into place! Fortunately, last year, a federal court struck down DC's gun ban in the case of DC v. Heller. This is the first time in years a court found a gun control law violated the second amendment. However, victory is not secured. The city of DC has appealed and the Supreme Court has agreed to hear the case. If the lower court's decision is upheld, law abiding citizens should once again be allowed to defend themselves in DC and I would expect it to become a much safer city. It would also set a very positive precedent that could affect gun laws all over the country.
However, a Supreme Court decision that the District of Columbia 's gun laws are a "reasonable" infringement on constitutional rights could severely setback the gun rights movement.