Conservatives Must Defend the Second Amendment

March 5, 2018
Washington, DC
Signatures updated 3/18/18

The recent school shooting in Parkland, FL was a tragedy. 17 students and teachers lost their lives at the hands of a mentally unstable gunman. The bravery and selflessness shown by those who sacrificed their lives to help others to safety is a humbling example of the best of American virtues.

What adds to the tragedy in Parkland was the fact that it could have been prevented. The shooter was known to local Parkland law enforcement, which responded to calls at his house more than thirty times. The Federal Bureau of Investigation failed to forward a chillingly specific tip about the shooter—one in which he self-identified as someone who intended to become “a professional school shooter.” Moreover, the Broward County sheriff’s deputy tasked with protecting the students at Parkland heard the shots but remained outside the school.

Laws and procedures that might have prevented the shooting in Parkland were not followed or enforced, and those charged to “protect and serve” failed. A thorough investigation needs to be conducted to determine what actually happened and why. All of this makes concerted efforts by liberal activists and the media to infringe upon Second Amendment rights of law abiding citizens misguided.

The Supreme Court has affirmed the plain text of the Second Amendment, which states that “the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.” The language of the amendment—confirmed by the Supreme Court in the seminal case of District of Columbia vs Heller—clearly indicates this is a pre-existing individual liberty, one that is referenced in the 1689 English Bill of Rights. The language “shall not be infringed” indicates recognition, not creation. In addition, every state constitution includes language similar to the Second Amendment, most of which have been upheld by state supreme courts.

Taking away the rights of law-abiding citizens to possess firearms will not prevent future tragedies like Parkland. Neither will the creation of massive databases of lawful gun owners.

Evil cannot be regulated. However, measures can be taken to diminish the frequency and scope of mass shootings. As a Florida Teacher of the Year Kelly Guthrie Raley said recently, parents must be more involved in regulating bad behavior. Gun-free school zones should be done away with, and teachers who want to be trained to possess firearms in the classroom should be given the support to do so.

Finally, enforcing existing laws as they relate to addressing troubled individuals might have prevented the Parkland tragedy, and can likely prevent others. When law enforcement fails, as it did in Parkland, there must be accountability.

As conservatives, we affirm our commitment to the Second Amendment and oppose any legislation that would infringe upon the Constitutional rights of law-abiding Americans to defend themselves and their families.


 

The Honorable Edwin Meese III
Former Attorney General
President Ronald Reagan
The Honorable Becky Norton Dunlop
Chairman, Conservative Action Project
Former White House Advisor, President Ronald Reagan
Alfred S. Regnery
Chairman
Law Enforcement Legal Defense Fund
The Honorable David McIntosh
U.S. House of Representatives
Former Member, Indiana
Jenny Beth Martin
Chairman
Tea Party Patriots Citizen Fund
The Honorable Colin A. Hanna
President
Let Freedom Ring, Inc.
The Honorable T. Kenneth Cribb, Jr.
Former Chief Domestic Advisor
President Ronald Reagan
The Honorable Jim DeMint
Former Member (SC)
United States Senate
Ed Corrigan
Former Executive Director
Senate Steering Committee
Rachel Bovard
Former Policy Director
Senate Steering Committee
Wesley Denton
Former Communications Director
Senator Jim DeMint (SC)
The Honorable J. Kenneth Blackwell
Chairman
Constitutional Congress, Inc.
Cleta Mitchell, Esq. David Bozell
President
ForAmerica
William L. Walton
Chairman
CNP Action, Inc.
Lt. Gen. William G. Boykin (Ret.)
Executive Vice President
Family Research Council
Sandra S. Froman
Treasurer
Council for National Policy
L. Brent Bozell, III
Founder & President
Media Research Center
The Honorable Ken Cuccinelli
President
Senate Conservatives Fund
Floyd Brown
Chairman
Western Center for Journalism
Ron Robinson
President
Young America’s Foundation
Tim Macy
Chairman
Gun Owners of America
The Honorable Morton C. Blackwell
Chairman
The Weyrich Lunch
The Honorable James C. Miller III
Director Office of Management & Budget
President Ronald Reagan, 1985-1988
The Honorable Gary Bauer
President
American Values
Rod D. Martin
Founder and CEO
The Martin Organization, Inc.
Sherri R. Martin
Executive Vice President
The Martin Organization, Inc.
Haley E. Martin
President
The Martin Foundation
Shawn A. Mitchell
Former National Chaplain
National Federation of Republican Assemblies
Jerry Melvin
Former Dean
Florida House of Representatives
Evelio Silvera
Campaign for the American Future
Nicholas Stehle
Campaign for the American Future
Mitchell Morgan
Chief Financial Officer
Martin Imaging
Sean Noble
President
American Encore
Rick Manning
President
Americans for Limited Government
Christopher Malagisi
Editor in Chief
Conservative Book Club
James L. Martin
Founder/Chairman
60 Plus Association
C. Preston Noell III
President
Tradition, Family, Property, Inc.
Dr. Janice Shaw Crouse
Board Chairman
The Institute on Religion and Democracy
William Mills
President
Mills Energy
Rod Vandenbos
CEO
Buzzbox Beverages, Inc.
Mark Fitzgibbons
President of Corporate Affairs
American Target Advertising
The Honorable Penny Pullen
Former Assistant Republican Leader
Illinois House of Representatives (Ret.)
Chad Connelly
President
Faith Wins
Peter J. Thomas
Chairman
The Conservative Caucus
Allen Hebert
Chairman
American-Chinese Fellowship
Michelle Easton
President
Clare Boothe Luce Policy Institute
Matt Mackowiak
Executive Director
Fight for Tomorrow
Melvin Adams
Former President
Renewanation
Martha Boneta
President
VCS
Richard Wright
CEO
AAndrews Consulting
Dr. Virginia Armstrong
Nat’l. Court Watch Chrm.
National Eagle Forum
The Honorable Mike Hill
Florida State House
Former Member
The Honorable Terrence Scanlon
Retired Chairman and President
Capital Research.Org
Roxanne Phillips
Member, Executive Committee
Council for National Policy
Jeremy Cerone
CEO
EliteSafe Inc.
Joe R. Calvert
President
Rabon-Calvert Interest
Mario H. Lopez
President
Hispanic Leadership Fund
Willes K. Lee
President
National Federation of Republican Assemblies
Tim LeFever
Chairman
Capitol Resource Institute
Lee A. Beaman
CEO
Beaman Automotive Group
Robert K. Fischer
Meeting Coordinator
Conservatives of Faith
The Honorable Mike Spence
Founding President
Conservative Republicans of California
Dr. Everett Piper
President
Oklahoma Wesleyan University
Elaine Donnelly
President
Center for Military Readiness
The Honorable Belden Bell
CoChair Legacy Society
The Heritage Foundation
Ralph A. Rebandt, II
Lead Pastor/Police Chaplain
Oakland Hills Community Church/Michigan Association of Police Chiefs
Judson Phillips
Founder
Tea Party Nation
Donna Hearne
Chief Executive Officer
The Constitutional Coalition
Norm Singleton
President
Campaign for Liberty
John Tate
President
America’s Liberty PAC
The Honorable Michael R. Long
State Chairman
NYS Conservative Party
Craig Shirley
Reagan Biographer
Presidential Historian
Star Parker
President, CURE
Creators Syndicated Columnist
Khadine L. Ritter
President
Eagle Forum of Ohio
J. Christian Adams
President
Public Interest Legal Foundation
Dean Brode Nelson
Chairman
Frederick Douglass Foundation
Richard Falknor
Publisher
blueridgeforum.com
The Honorable Diana Denman
President
Reagan Legacy Forum
Dr. Jerome R. Corsi, Ph.D.
Washington Bureau Chief
Infowars.com
Kay R. Daly
President
Coalition for a Fair Judiciary
Edward Diefenthal
President and CEO
Woodvine Group, LLC
Bob Carlstrom
President
The Carlstrom Group, LLC
Susan Carleson
Chairman/CEO
American Civil Rights Union
Frank J. Gaffney
President & CEO
Center for Security Policy
Jack Park
Conservative Activist and Donor
None
Paul Caprio
Director
Family Pac Federal
Tom DeWeese
President
American Policy Center
Alan M. Gotttlieb
Executive Vice President
Second Amendment Foundation
Charlie Gerow
CEO
Quantum Communications
Charles Copeland
President
Intercollegiate Studies Institute
Lewis K. Uhler
pres
NTLC
Joe Waldron
Legislative Director
Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms
Kevin Freeman
Founder
NSIC Institute
James N. Clymer
Former National Chairman, Constitution Party
Constitution Party National Committee
Felix Bronstein
Attorney
Gene Mills
President
Louisiana Family Forum
The Honorable Tom DeLay
Former Majority Leader
First Principles LLC
Mrs. Roy S. (Kayla) Moore
President
Foundation for Moral Law
The Honorable Charles J. Cooper
Former Assistant Attorney General. Ronald Reagan Administration
Cooper& Kirk, PLLC

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