Well that escalated quickly...
Just days after taking back the House, a Democratic Congressmen has proposed outlawing "military-style semi-automatic assault weapons" and forcing existing owners to sell their weapons or face prosecution.
In a USA Today op-ed entitled “Ban assault weapons, buy them back, go after resisters,” Rep. Eric Swalwell, D-Calif., argued Thursday that prior proposals to ban assault weapons “would leave millions of assault weapons in our communities for decades to come.”
Swalwell proposes that the government should offer up to $1,000 for every weapon covered by a new ban, estimating that it would take $15 billion to buy back roughly 15 million weapons - and “criminally prosecute any who choose to defy [the buyback] by keeping their weapons.”
As NBC News reports, this is a major departure from prior gun control proposals that typically exempt existing firearms; as in the past, Democrats and gun safety groups have carefully resisted proposals that could be interpreted as 'gun confiscation', a concept gun rights groups have often invoked as part of a slippery slope argument against more modest proposals like universal background checks.
And sure enough Swalwell's egotistical over-reach - going full "Australia" - prompted anger across social media. But it was one particular thread that caught our eye...
John Cardillo, 'America Talks Live' host on Newsmax, tweeted in response: "Make no mistake, Democrats want to eradicate the Second Amendment, ban and seize all guns, and have all power rest with the state. These people are dangerously obsessed with power."
Make no mistake, Democrats want to eradicate the Second Amendment, ban and seize all guns, and have all power rest with the state.— John Cardillo (@johncardillo) November 16, 2018
These people are dangerously obsessed with power. https://t.co/f1AS6Me0ko
Which prompted a further response from Joe Biggs, a combat vet, "So basically @RepSwalwell wants a war. Because that’s what you would get. You're outta your fucking mind if you think I’ll give up my rights and give the gov all the power."
To which Rep. Swalwell decided to reply - in a not tyrannical-sounding way at all... "And it would be a short war my friend. The government has nukes. Too many of them. But they’re legit. I’m sure if we talked we could find common ground to protect our families and communities."
And it would be a short war my friend. The government has nukes. Too many of them. But they’re legit. I’m sure if we talked we could find common ground to protect our families and communities.— Rep. Eric Swalwell (@RepSwalwell) November 16, 2018
"So our government would nuke its own country in order to take guns? Wow," Biggs responded.
"Don’t be so dramatic. You claiming you need a gun to protect yourself against the government is ludicrous. But you seem like a reasonable person. If an assault weapons ban happens, I’m sure you’ll follow law," Swalwell tweeted back.
And after the furor exploded, Swalwell quickly resorted to the "it was sarcasm" excuse.
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Now the question is - who will Twitter ban? The conservative-leaning 2nd Amendment-protector raising his 'social media' above the pulpit; or the liberal politician who is threatening to unleash nukes on domestic soil in order to ensure the citizenry follow his demands and hand over their means of defense?
To be continued...