Brad Harvey: A president or a shepherd? You decide

February 1, 2013 

The preamble of The United States Constitution begins with three simple words. Do you recall what they are?

When our forefathers gathered to begin construction of this great document, they began the Constitution with “We the People.” Today, however, I’m not sure those words still apply.

You see, for whatever reason, those in Washington tend to no longer believe in the people. They believe instead that it’s all about them and whichever side of our political spectrum that they represent.

The original idea was that those fortunate enough to be elected to serve in Washington would represent the very people that put them there but that’s no longer true. They apparently have this strange idea that they are there to represent a party and everything that takes place in the District of Columbia is nothing more than a game.

One must look no further than the president’s current all-out war on guns. Despite the fact that our Constitution is quite clear on the rights of the people as it pertains to gun ownership, President Obama and his cronies from the left are once again on the attack using everything from the media to the unimaginable deaths of 20 children in Connecticut to further their party’s ridiculous, misguided agenda.

Jumping on this bandwagon to trample our Constitution and outlaw ownership of specific firearms over the actions of a few nuts that appear from time to time, all because we’ve allowed them to frighten us, makes about as much sense as if President Ford had instructed us to kill every shark in the water after the movie “Jaws” scared the bikini off of every swimmer back in 1975.

I can tell you exactly how many Americans lose their lives to pistols and rifles each year and it will probably shock you to see how small that number is in relation to the real problems that our country faces. Let’s take a look.

Did you know that, per the census of 2011, almost 312 million people live in the US now? Of those:

• 571,950 died from cancer in 2011. (American Cancer Society)

32,367 died in automobile accidents that same year (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration)

• Approximately 25,000 die annually from falls around the home. (National Safety Council)

On average, 36,000 U.S. citizens die from the flu every year. (Center for Disease Control)

• In 2010 there were 6,009 deaths by pistol and 358 involving a rifle in the U.S. for a total of 6,367. (United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime)

• In 2012 the total was 6,851. (CNN, 1/19/13)

To listen to our president you would surely believe that the number of people that die by a shot from a rifle is at epidemic proportions and the mythical “assault rifle” is to blame. Yet, in reality, the number is fewer than 400 each year in a nation of 312 million where over 310 million firearms are privately owned!

That’s right. Fewer than 400 annual deaths by rifle and that’s ALL rifles- single shots, semi automatic, bolt action hunting rifles and the modern sporting rifles.

I find it odd that Obama has placed very little attention on the fact that we’ve been down this road before. Could it be because the previous “Assault Weapons Ban” pushed forth under President Clinton in 1994 and that expired in 2004 accomplished little to nothing in regards to curbing such violent acts?

I’d be willing to bet that’s the case considering that the killings at Columbine took place while that ban was still in effect.

If we as a nation allow the game of politics to infringe on our rights and ultimately change the meaning of our Constitution, then I believe that another change to it is in order as well. Those first few words of the Preamble would have to be modified. Instead of “We the People” it should read “We the Sheep.”

Brad Harvey is a freelance writer in Clover. Visit his web site at bradharveyoutdoors.com or follow on Twitter@BHarveyOutdoors.

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