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Location: California, United States

I am a neolibertarian minded individual who feels that freedom and individual rights take precedence over the wants of government. I believe government exists to serve the people and not to protect us from ourselves. I am an advocate for private firearms ownership, smaller government, reduced taxes and freedom to live your life however you choose, providing you do not directly hurt others.

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Friday, March 11, 2005

Terrorist SUSPECTS Are Buying Guns

Over the past few days there have been a lot of news stories and radio talk show hosts lamenting that terrorism suspects are allowed to buy guns. They talk of how us evil gun nuts in the NRA are so radical in our defense of the 2nd amendment that we pressure the government into not stopping this from happening. Here's a quote from the Record Online article in my title link:
Yes, fellow Americans, the Second Amendment lobby that routinely proclaims love of country as it insists no infringements be put on the right to bear arms, is largely responsible for the disturbing fact that people on a federal watch list of known or suspected terrorists were allowed to buy rifles, ammo and anything else they wanted and all federal agents could do was . . . watch
Here's my response to this:

Great! Woohoo! Fantastic!

You see, these people are suspects. They are not convicted terrorists nor have they been subjected to a due legal process that would forbid them for purchasing guns or exercising any other right that they are legally entitled too. This is how it's SUPPOSED to work in America:
Innocent until proven guilty.
If these suspects and people on watch lists are bad guys, the law enforcement community needs to find evidence of their guilt, charge them with crime, get a judge and jury to convict them of that crime and THEN they can't buy guns anymore. Once they are convicted of terrorism, conspiracy to commit a terrorist act, or something similar, I'd gladly see them executed or at least locked away for the rest of their lives.

I'm sick and tired of people using terrorism and 9/11 as an excuse to weaken our rights, grant broad powers to law enforcement (Patriot Act) and otherwise abandon the ideals that this nation was founded on and that are enshrined in the constitution and bill of rights.

I believe that if these people are suspects being watched by Federal Agents then they probably are genuine bad guys. Since they have not been tried and convicted, however, there is still a reasonable chance that they are innocent and thus no government entity should be able to confiscate the rights granted to them by our legal system.

Probably is not a good enough reason to mess with someone's rights. I once terrified a woman when I was a college student. I was an insomniac that often took late night walks. On one of these walks I came across a petite woman with her back to me who was struggling to load a large heavy trunk into her car in a dark alley outside of a nursing home. I'm over six feet tall and was wearing an old denim jacket, disreputable jeans and a day's worth of beard stubble. I approached her and asked if she needed some help. The poor woman jumped out of her skin, almost fainted and then squeeked at me to go away. I was sincerely trying to help and hadn't even thought about how my appearance and our environment might have frightened her. She thought I was probably going to rape her or suspected that I would mug her. If probably and suspected were good enough reasons to confiscate a person's rights, she could have made a good case for having me thrown in jail when all I wanted to do was help her out.

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