Yes…, Enough IS Enough

Photo by Colin Lloyd on Unsplash
Written by Guy Nave

Immediately after the racist Buffalo, NY mass shooting, I asked, “When will we finally say, ‘Enough is F**king Enough?’”

After another mass shooting in Tulsa, OK, involving an AR-15 resulting in the murder of 4 people and the suicide of the shooter, the President of the United States of America asked the U.S Congress and American voters, “How much more carnage are we willing to accept?”

At the end of the day, this should be the only question that matters to ALL Americans — Republicans, Democrats, Independents, or those with no political affiliation at all.

Contrary to pro-Second Amendment talking points, taking reasonable measures to protect Americans from mindless homicidal carnage is not about denying anyone’s Second Amendment rights.

In America, the Federal Uniform Drinking Age Act of 1984 sets the minimum legal drinking age at 21-years old, and every State abides by that standard. In many states, however, someone can purchase a military-style assault weapon when they are 18-years old. This is crazy!

The Second Amendment does not protect nor guarantee such foolishness. The right to “bear arms” is not an unlimited right.

Alluding to SCOTUS Justice Antonin Scalia, President Biden stated,

It was Justice Scalia who wrote, and I quote: “Like most rights, the right Second Amendment — the rights granted by the Second Amendment are not unlimited.” Not unlimited. It never has been.

What Scalia said in the majority opinion of District of Columbia vs Heller was:

Like most rights, the right secured by the Second Amendment is not unlimited… the right was not a right to keep and carry any weapon whatsoever in any manner whatsoever and for whatever purpose.

Biden went on to say,

There have always been limitations on what weapons you can own in America. For example, machine guns have been federally regulated for nearly 90 years, and this is still a free country.

The Tulsa, gunman, who killed four people at a hospital, purchased an AR-15-style rifle less than 3 hours before his deadly shooting spree. Days before that, he had bought a semi-automatic pistol from a pawn shop. Officers at the shooting scene found 30 shell casings from the rifle and seven from the pistol rounds.

Such easy access to military-style weapons and ammunition is unacceptable. There are several reasonable and simple gun control options that can be implemented that would protect Americans — especially children — from this sort of gun violence without violating the intent of the Second Amendment.

Citing a study by Florida Atlantic University’s Schmidt College of Medicine, Biden stated that “more school-aged children have died from guns than on-duty police officers and active-duty military combined.”

We have to do a better job protecting our children. Desiring to protect Americans from preventable gun violence is not a leftist agenda. Most Americans support stricter gun laws.

While Americans have been blaming Congress for decades for failing to pass reasonable gun control legislation, most have been reluctant to make gun control legislation a priority when choosing whom to vote for.

While Congress is responsible for passing federal gun control legislation, I’m tired of blaming Congress. If the 80–90% of Americans in favor of gun control legislation voted for politicians in favor of gun control legislation, America would have reasonable gun control legislation.

If the current members of Congress are not willing to pass gun control legislation, it is up to American voters to elect Congressional members willing to do so.

American voters have the power to make a difference. Let’s do so NOW!

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About the author

Guy Nave

Guy Nave is a professor of religion at Luther College in Decorah, Iowa. His research focuses on the topics of Christianity, religion and social justice, the social construction of religious meaning, and race-religion-and-politics. Professor Nave is currently researching the power, politics, and meaning behind the rhetoric of "change."

He is the author of several articles and book chapters, and he served as a New Testament Greek translator for the 2011 Common English Bible. His commentary on 2 Corinthians is published in the African American New Testament Commentary, and his book, The Role and Function of Repentance in Luke-Acts has been identified as “the standard scholarly work on repentance in the New Testament.”

Guy Nave received his Master of Divinity from Princeton Theological Seminary, and his Ph.D. in New Testament studies from Yale University. In addition to his blog posts here, he is a frequent contributor to Sojourners Magazine's online "Commentary" blog series.

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