Thursday, January 17, 2013

By Way of Follow-up

to the piece I wrote yesterday:

I support this president, and recognize what an immense accomplishment it was to get as far down the road to gun safety reform as the measures he proposed yesterday takes us.

Having said that, Barack Obama is starting to look more and more like Don Quixote to me, chasing windmills. I can't fathom how someone as smart and politically savvy as this president could think for a minute that he'll be able to get a ban on the sale, possession, and transfer of military assault style rifles through Congress. This is not to denigrate his sweeping firearm reform program announced yesterday, but he won't be able to get any firearm ban through this Congress and he knows it.

Governing by executive order is not what any commander-in-chief wants to do, and to date, Mr. Obama has used less directives than any of his immediate predecessors.

The reforms proposed yesterday present the country with guidelines for substantive social change not just in the area of firearm safety, but in the field of mental health, too.

But, this is the beginning of what even the president recognizes to be a long, arduous path, and one, frankly, that has become needlessly difficult. There is precedent for decisive, definitive action on firearms. Mr. Obama may choose ultimately to follow his predecessors Abraham Lincoln, George H.W. Bush, and Bill Clinton and ban weapons designed only to do grave harm, as well as limit the number of munition clips, by executive directive. One can only hope he chooses to do so sooner rather than later.