First off, what kind of idiot reporter goes to cover a story without a camera or a tape recorder?…Me, that’s who. I did have a notebook and pen, however.
I went to cover Third District Representative Jeff Duncan’s “listening tour.” He visited several areas of his district today in order to hear the concerns of his constituents on the Second Amendment and the current administration’s plans to severely cut back the rights of lawful gun owners. The stop in our town was at the local gun shop where even for a Friday, it was crowded. There were about 40 to 50 citizens that showed up. The shop did a booming business as customers awaited Duncan’s arrival. I spent over $80 bucks myself.
Mr. Duncan started off by stating his position, that he is a CWP holder and a lifetime member of the NRA. He also reiterated that he’s a firm believer in the Constitution as written and carries a copy around at all times for reference. He is doing his best to push back against the current proposals offered by Dianne Feinstein and her current gun ban legislation.
One very nice older woman, Miss Mary C. of Seneca, SC, opened up the session with a statement that she had written. She was kind enough to give a copy and permission to reprint it on this blog.
Congressman Jeff Duncan:
Thank you for allowing me to state my position on gun control. I am a 71 year old woman and I have my concealed carry permit. I do carry at all times and everywhere it is legally possible. I am proficient in the use of my firearms and am no threat to anyone who is not a threat to me.
The government seems to think I should be hiding in my house or have someone else to protect me. This is not the case. I am often required to drive long distances, 1,500 miles or more, alone. Not everywhere I stop is the safest of places, and knowing I can defend myself if necessary makes this possible.
I also own a semi-automatic rifle. It is not an AR-15, and while it looks less “scary” it is every bit as lethal. The proposed laws are a Travesty and must be totally rejected. They would hurt citizens such as myself and have absolutely no effect on criminals.
The current administration is clearly chipping away, incrementally, at not only the second amendment but also free speech and the prohibition of unreasonable search and seizure. Without our own personal protection, none of our rights can be protected.
My personal position is this; in order to confiscate my firearms, they would truly have to kill me first. I oppose a national firearms registry, as that is also a step towards confiscation. The Second Amendment was not written so we can hunt, though many of us do. It was written so we could protect ourselves from criminals AND a government out of control, and that day has come.
Thank you for your attention. You have my permission to quote me at any time if you find it appropriate.
Your loyal constituent,
Mary C., Seneca, SC
Mary received a tremendous round of applause and a very heartfelt thank you from Congressman Duncan, after which he opened up the floor for questions The main concern and most of the initial questions were about mental health and what we could do to address it.
One gentleman brought up the fact that there were over 35 million prescriptions for Prozac given out last year and that over six percent of people taking the drug had bad side effects from it. Prozac is just one of the many drugs prescribed for depression and/or anxiety. Many of these drugs are prescribed to Veterans returning from war zones for PTSD. If you’re interested, here is a list of different medications prescribed for PTSD
Another citizen brought everyone’s attention to a web site that keeps track of crimes by people who were either currently taking the prescribed medications or had stopped and were going through withdrawals. Here’s a link to SSRI Stories. These are all well documented stories with full media articles available.
Another constituent asked about the current RFP by the Department of Homeland Security for 450 million rounds of hollow point .40 caliber ammunition, enough to wage a seven year war. This assessment is made on the premise by one of our serving generals that approximately 70 million rounds a year are expended by our Soldiers and Marines. That includes all calibers of ammunition used in the war zone from 5.56 NATO up to the .50 caliber used by our Special Forces snipers. It should be pointed out that hollow point ammunition is against the Geneva Convention to use in any active war zone or military operation of any kind.
Mr. Duncan responded that the proposal was just that, a proposal and that he had some say in the matter as a member of the Homeland Security Oversight Committee. He also said that the proposal, if a contract was awarded, would extend over several years and not all at once.
Another citizen brought up the fact that the ATF has in fact, been starting an illegal gun registry by going to gun shops and FFL dealers and photocopying their records of purchases made by lawful gun owners. Mr Duncan stated that he was solidly against a National Gun Registry.
Mr. Duncan also wrote a letter to the owners of the Remington Arms Company inviting them to move their manufacturing operations down to the open arms of South Carolina.
There are over 20,000 gun laws on the books right now. As far as I’m concerned, that’s about 20,000 too many. We need to enforce the laws we have now. We don’t need any more gun laws.
The Second Amendment states that the lawful citizen should be armed with the same small arms as the current military soldier. Yes, that would include any small arms carried by our Soldiers and Marines from sidearms such as the 1911 .45 SA up to the current M-4 5.56 NATO select-fire autos.
My personal opinion is that the Second Amendment IS my gun permit.
If you’ve read this far, congratulations. Here is another little factoid…The state of South Carolina has no State Hospital for the mentally ill, so these disturbed people often end up in the county jails where they are unable to be treated, not only because of lack of funding, but also because jailers are not trained in psychiatric evaluation or treatment.