Often the most-interesting parts of congressional hearings are the performative one-liners congressman deliver in attempts to get onto cable news programs. But, now and then, something so honest and off-script happens that we should stop and pay attention.
Such an honest moment occurred in a House Oversight committee hearing last March on regulatory overreach by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) after gun-control proponents on the committee argued that gun bans protect women.
Amy Swearer, a senior legal fellow at the Heritage Foundation, was given a chance to respond to this claim by Rep. Anna Paulina Luna (R-Fla.).
Luna asked Swearer, “Do you believe that firearms, and women having firearms, is apparently anti-woman?”
“Yeah,” Swearer said, “so this has been something that has been raised several times in this hearing. This idea that guns don’t protect women. Of course they do, and I personally take offense at having my natural right to self-defense ‘mansplained’ to me by members of this body who come to work every day protected by armed men with guns, very much believing that those guns are keeping them safe. And I tend to agree with them that those guns are in fact a large component in keeping them safe.
“I would also point to the defensive gun use database that we run at Heritage,” said Swearer. “So many of those instances involve women who otherwise would have been at a physical and strength disadvantage, who were able to use self-defense at a distance to take on and defend their rights in ways they otherwise would not have been able to.”
We wanted to hear even more, so we asked Swearer to do this video interview.