This blog is in response to an article posted here. The relevant portions of the Tulsa World Article are as follows:
“Sin nature in mankind” causes gun violence, not the guns themselves or mental illness, state Sen. Nathan Dahm, R-Broken Arrow, told combative CNN commentator Piers Morgan on Monday night.
Dahm appeared on Morgan’s program in connection with a bill Dahm introduced for the upcoming legislative session.
The legislation is called the “Piers Morgan Act,” a dig at Morgan’s outspoken criticism of the United States’ relatively lax gun laws.
Dahm’s bill essentially would eliminate all handgun licensing requirements in Oklahoma. Dahm said he opposes all background checks, including those for mental illness and criminal records, as unconstitutional.
“You are welcome to propose those as a constitutional amendment,” Dahm told Morgan.
As he is known to do, Morgan frequently cut Dahm off and interrupted him, and Dahm sometimes talked over Morgan.
“Why would you not want to know if someone was mentally insane?” Morgan asked.
“People kill people.” It is a saying that has been used by numerous Oklahoma politicians and residents all over the state, and it is true. A gun is a machine, but without invisible neurons firing in a brain, controlling the muscles of a person’s hand, a gun cannot kill a person. However, this does not mean that everyone should be able to own a gun, especially without a background check. Not everyone in the state can have a driver’s license, not everyone can vote, not everyone can even hope to get into college. Why are guns the main area of focus in a state with one of the lowest levels of college graduation rates and is at the bottom for teacher pay? Why is eliminating background checks for everyone, including those with severe mental problems, at the heart of Mr. Dahm’s goal instead of improving mental health facilities in Oklahoma, or even acknowledging that a person who is mentally ill, or who has a violent past, might not be capable of rationalizing or understanding the consequences of pulling a trigger?
Furthermore, Mr. Dahm is using his religious beliefs to justify his rationale in putting forth this bill. President John F. Kennedy famously said, “I do not speak for the church on public matters, and the church does not speak for me.” Mr. Dahm feels differently and blatantly blames gun related homicides and injuries on the “sinful nature of man kind” and proposes alleviating that sinful nature by giving everyone the opportunity to own a machine designed for no other purpose than to take life.
Mr. Dahm is entitled to his opinion, but he is not entitled to use his public position to publicly mock someone. Naming the proposed bill after a public figure who has very differing views on gun laws is down right disrespectful and should not be tolerated.
Additionally, Mr. Dahm’s purposes might be better served if he had a more clear understanding of our Constitution. Mr. Dahm says that background checks for those who want to own guns is unconstitutional. I would challenge Mr. Dahm to articulate what article he is referring to. The Constitution states, “A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.” Mr. Dahm has obviously over looked the entire first half of the sentence that implies keeping and bearing arms is essential to a WELL REGULATED MILITIA, not an essential right of every person living in the country, and especially not a right of those without the ability to rationalize and understand the consequences of their actions.