President’s Foray Into Print Journalism More Fizzle Than Sizzle

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posted on May 27, 2023
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Gage Skidmore courtesy Flickr

Apparently tired of spouting the same gun-control nonsense into a microphone again and again, President Joe Biden (D) has taken to the printed word, allegedly penning a USA Today op-ed published last week in which the newspaper listed him as an “opinion contributor.”

Who really wrote the op-ed is uncertain, but one thing’s for sure: It certainly reads like the same person writing the same, tired stuff that his speeches have included ever since Biden took office in 2021.

The main gist of the op-ed was to brag about the so-called Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, a dubious piece of legislation passed by Congress last year. At the time, the NRA opposed the measure, warning that it “falls short at every level,” “leaves too much discretion in the hands of government officials,” and “contains undefined and overbroad provisions—inviting interference with our constitutional freedoms.”

As the NRA Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) recently pointed out, those predictions about the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act have been vindicated, as young adults are now facing arbitrary waiting periods for lawful firearm purchases, the U.S. government is pouring tax dollars into unconstitutional “red-flag” schemes, and the Department of Justice is on a fishing expedition to try to find ways to invent bureaucratic limitations on private sales.

In fact, those are the very things Biden brags about in the USA Today op-ed. In the process, he lists three steps to pursue:

  1. Fully implement the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act to show congressional Republicans that common-sense laws save lives;
  2. Take additional action to maximize the benefits of the law;
  3. Build an even bigger, unrelenting coalition demanding that Congress pass additional common-sense gun safety legislation.

What Biden is actually proposing is to further infringe on the rights of gun owners under 21, pour more money into state red-flag measures, and recruit more anti-gunners to parrot the administration’s mostly inaccurate talking points that focus action on law-abiding gun owners and gun sellers without dealing with violent criminals.

As one might expect, along the way, Biden touts the “fact” that “the majority of gun owners” want Congress to take action on “gun violence,” an intentionally vague claim that could mean anything. Interestingly, that portion of the op-ed links directly to a story that shows support by the general public for stricter gun laws has actually fallen 8% in just the past four years!

As so often occurs with Biden’s speeches, in this case the “fact sheet” provided by the White House said much more than the actual op-ed. But it, too, was mostly recirculated hot air. That fact sheet, headlined, “President Biden Announces 13 New Actions To Reduce Gun Violence by Maximizing the Benefits of the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act,” was evidently written by someone else, and covers a lot of ground not mentioned in the op-ed—a strange thing for a White House release that was meant to steer readers to the newspaper column.

Of the 13 “new” actions listed, most were just rehashes of the earlier executive order that Biden claimed brought the country as close to “universal” background checks as possible without legislation, but that actually instructed government agencies to invent ways to make life harder for lawful gun dealers.

If anything good came out of the op-ed, it is that Biden, apparently, finally believes he has already done all he can to scuttle the Second Amendment without Congress helping him out.

“I have already taken more meaningful executive action to reduce gun violence than any other president, and I will continue to pursue every legal and effective action,” the op-ed stated. “But my power is not absolute. Congress must act, including by banning assault weapons and high-capacity magazines, requiring gun owners to securely store their firearms, requiring background checks for all gun sales, and repealing gun manufacturers’ immunity from liability.”

Of course, some of the actions taken by his administration—like the new Department of Justice rule redefining “firearms,” “receivers,” and “frames,” and another new rule redefining braced pistols as short-barreled rifles (SBRs)—are already being hashed out in the courts, where they could very well be ruled unconstitutional.

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