On the one hand, Democrats have (aside from any contrariness Joe Manchin may express) complete control of Federal government for the next couple of years.
What does this mean for law-abiding gun owners?
Well, they are certainly floating the trial balloons already. And Biden (and, perhaps more importantly, Harris) were pretty clear during the campaign: they want to ban “assault weapon”, clap arbitrary limits on magazine sizes, and make it possible to register guns and allow pretty much anyone with a personal beef to get your guns confiscated.
It’s in their DNA, of course. But I suspect there’s going to be a certain urgency about it.
For one thing, even before 2020 there was a solid case to be made that gun culture” is winning the culture war.
And while the mainstream media will never dig into it, there’s a solid case to be made that gun ownership and the culture that goes with it broke even farther out of its traditional white/male/30-60/rural niche and went even more widespread in society.
“First-time gun buyers favor Biden over Trump,” the Dallas Morning News reported of pre-election Texas survey results. “In fact, 51% of first-time purchasers surveyed favored Biden, while 43% favored Trump.”
As you might expect, this complicates matters for Democrats who have long used gun restrictions as an easy way to bash political enemies while doing minimal harm to their own constituents. With gun ownership becoming a nonpartisan taste, restrictive laws threaten to inconvenience and anger supporters as much as opponents.
Sure enough, “Americans’ appetite for gun control is the lowest it has been since 2016,” according to Gallup. And while a large majority of Democrats still favor tighter restrictions, support has declined even in that group by five points. New gun owners, along with long-time shooters, are likely to respond to stricter gun laws with prickly defiance.
And this bit here – which is something I’ve been hoping would evolve for a loooong time:
“Previous studies have proposed two sides of gun culture: one focused on recreational use and a second on self-defense. But the new BU study identifies a third mentality, made up of people who view the defense of the Second Amendment as necessary to freedom in the United States,” Boston University (BU) announced last summer. “This so-called ‘gun culture 3.0’ has increased the most in states that have strengthened their gun laws to the greatest degree, suggesting it may be triggered by perceived threats on individual liberty by the government.”
So my thesis – call it aspirational, if you want, because you’re not wrong – is that the Progs who now control the wheels and levers of federal government need to make their move now, because they may not get another chance.
And given that depending on Joe Manchin’s sympathies (and perhaps a few other relatively moderate Dems in the Senate), the difference between a bill being “Law” and “Oppo research ready for the 2022 campaign to extinct every non-metro anti-gun candidate between the Hudson and the Sierra Madre” might be one vote? That might just moderate the push.
I’m hoping not, of course – I want the progs to put their cards on the table, and have it blow up in their faces in two years.