4 years, 6 months ago
In response to Christians, The Second Amendment And The Duty Of Self Defense, Rabbi David JB Krishef and I had an e-mail exchange. He wrote to me:
Mr. Smith – Thank you for reading the Ethics and Religion Talk column. Please note that no one in the column took the position that one may not use a weapon to defend oneself and one’s family, or even other innocents. Also note something which became clear to me only after the publication of the column, that assault weapons are currently not legal for ordinary citizens to own. Therefore, the position that we espoused in the column is in fact current law, as I understand it.
To which I responded:
You might want to see this.
So-called “assault weapons” are only prohibited insofar as they are foreign made, or have magazine capacities greater than ten. This just prohibits manufacturing in Michigan, or in other words, prevents jobs from coming to Michigan.
Pre-1994 weapons are still allowed. That just makes it more expensive, but not impossible or illegal.
And … I addressed the issue of assault weapons in my article.
Kind sir. Please let me ask you two questions that would help me to understand your views.
(1) If modern sporting weapons (so-called assault weapons with high capacity magazines) had existed in the colonial days, and the colonists were sustaining home invasions that endangered their families, would you have allowed them to use those weapons to defend their families, or would you have restricted them to the available weapons of the time (i.e., black powder and muzzle loaders)?
(2) In the links I provided I documented two-, three-, four- and five-man home invasions all over America. Would you restrict the magazine size in my own weapons, thus making my family more endangered in such a home invasion if there were misses, failures-to-stop, home invaders high on meth, and so on?
To which the Rabbi responded:
Mr. Smith —
1) As long as we are traveling through time, I would take a 22th century weapon that would immobilize the assailant without harming him!
2) It is not wise to make law or policy based on outlying cases. I freely admit not being an expert on law enforcement and weapons – therefore I consulted with colleagues who are. My understanding is that were assault weapons of any capacity fully legalized, there would be far more innocent lives killed than saved, because a weapon in the hands of a person untrained to use it properly is more likely to do harm than good.
Thus has the mission of much of American progressive clergy morphed from one of salvation into societal security. Soteriology has become anthropology, and concern for individuals has been replaced by pining away for the perfect state.
As for the “outlier” example of multiple-man home invasions, my research was too easy to uncover in a brief period of searching for a single day of crime for me to believe that it is really an outlier example. Besides, what if I want to be prepared for home invasions regardless of whether the Rabbi thinks I need this preparation? How can my scenario be an outlier to itself?
As for so-called “assault weapons,” take note, Rabbi, that control over weapons that have collapsible or telescoping capabilities, easy take-down and modularity, lights, no so-called “sporting purpose,” and magazines more than a pre-determined amount has its roots in Nazi Germany. I believe your people have a history with Nazi Germany, no?