The most alarming thing about what are styled “Red Flag” laws isn’t that they threaten to take guns away from people.
It is that they aren’t laws, at all.
Well, they aren’t laws – in the sense of any having been violated as the prerequisite to enforcing them. What “Red Flag” laws do is empower the effective conviction – and punishment – of people who are “guilty” of having worried someone. Perhaps a vengeful estranged or former spouse. A white coat who is “concerned” that you aren’t taking the drugs he prescribes – or declined to answer certain questions you’d rather not answer.
Possibly someone you don’t even know – who read something you wrote (or heard something you said) and didn’t like it. Enough to make a call – anonymously – to express their “concern.”
Hut! Hut! Hut!
As for (repeated) example the Hut! Hut! Hutting! of people legally carrying weapons in public.
It is a legal irrelevance – under these laws – that you didn’t actually break any. Much less were convicted of having broken any. Your offense is having been accused.
And that’s the danger. Not the guns – per se – but rather the precedent.
If it becomes “legal” to seize someone’s guns because “someone” – whoever it may be – asserts they are concerned about that person, fears they may do something – then is there any logical reason to disbelieve the same principle will eventually be expanded upon to encompass other things that some people also worry about?
Things like speech they don’t like, for instance?
How unlikely do you suppose it is that the same people who urgently believe it is necessary and ought to be legal to seize someone’s guns because they are worried about their state of mind – or so they assert – would not also assert the same with regard to words that worry them?
In fact, the two are already intertwined. For how does one assert worry in regard to the person who owns a gun other than by referring to what he has said or written? Indeed, it must be so, since by definition, “Red Flag” laws accost the person who hasn’t done anything. Well, other than being someone that someone else is “concerned” about.
With the result being an inclination not to say it, at all.
Of course, that is exactly the point. Or rather, the point of “Red Flag” laws is not to seize people’s guns without their having done anything illegal to justify it – although that is certainly an element of it. What is foundationally intended is to use the fear of power – as distinct from law – as a universal cudgel to stifle the smallest expression of dissent.
It is not enough to take people’s guns – though it is necessary to do this, ultimately, in order to assure their submission to everything else that follows. What is absolutely necessary – to the establishment of absolute power – is to establish in the minds of the people that anything they say can and will be used against them – just not necessarily in a court of law. Whenever whatever they say in any way “worries” those who have the power to punish them for saying it.
This is how it already works in Chyna – under what is styled the “social credit” system. People are rewarded by not being punished for saying (and doing) only that which doesn’t “worry” those who have the power to punish them at any time – and in real time. Post something wrongthinkful online – or visit a wrongthinkful site – and the consequences are immediate as well as extra-judicial.
In Chyna, there is no law – other than power.
And that law is in the process of being applied, here.
Never forget, as well, that it was first applied – well, advocated – by the man who many misbelieve is the man who stands opposed to such things. The Orange Man. Some will recall what he said: “Take the guns, due process later.” Here is the full quote, uttered back in 2018 after the Parkland shooting:
“Or, Mike, take the firearms first and then go to court. Because that’s another system, because a lot of times, by the time you go to court, it takes so long to go to court, to get the due process procedures. I like taking the guns early. Like in this crazy man’s case that just took place in Florida, he had a lot of firearms — they saw everything — to go to court would have taken a long time, so you could do exactly what you’re saying, but take the guns first, go through due process second.”
Italics added, to emphasize the point.
So now the man is gone, but the laws that criminalize those who haven’t violated any are coming. So as to establish the implicit intimidation that the new man seeks to enshrine as the law, encompassing everything, in time.
. . .
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