Reaction to Aurora Colorado Shooting

I would first like to offer my sincerest condolences to the families who lost loved ones in this senseless tragedy. Violence like this is unacceptable in any society. I hope that the trial of the shooter will be swift and the punishment will be the harshest possible under Colorado state law.

I do caution everyone in Delaware and this country to not ‘knee jerk’ react to this situation though. In an election year, it is unfortunately very possible that you may see some politician use this tragedy to push agenda’s with regards to guns and seek federal ‘action’ to make sure something like this ‘never happens again’. I remember Rahm Emmanuel saying that government should ‘never waste a good crisis’. This type of thinking brought us things such as the Patriot Act and the TARP. Actions with all good intentions, have given us the unintended consequences that measures like these often do.

There was a failure of government here though. But it’s not what might pop into one’s mind immediately and most certainly won’t be talked about on the evening news. The failure by the government here was not allowing the citizens of Colorado to defend themselves. After the shootings at Columbine, the Colorado state legislature should have immediately passed legislation to allow properly licensed citizens to conceal and carry firearms. By not doing so, the Colorado state government took away one of their citizens fundamental rights, that being the right to defend themselves.

Ones right to defend oneself ranks at the top of the list with that of speech, religion, press and redressing of grievances. By not allowing the citizens to carry firearms, the state has stripped the citizens of this right and taken it upon themselves to be the primary protectors of life. The government, whether state or federal, no matter how hard they try, simply should not and cannot perform this task as well as the individual can.

I can only imagine what it was like in that theater when the shooting started. I’m positive it was horrible and total chaos. But one thing I am sure of is that before anyone could have dialed 911 and pressed ‘send’, one or two legally armed citizens could have drawn their guns and at least tried to defend the crowd and themselves from the lunatic that committed this crime. Maybe just shooting back would have been enough to scare the gunman off and mitigated the loss of life.

One thing is certain, by the time the government could respond, a dozen people were dead and over 4 dozen wounded. I am NOT saying that law enforcement didn’t do the best they could to respond to this attack. They simply could not get there fast enough to prevent what happened.

Some will say we need MORE government to prevent things like this. Such as, ‘We need to take everyone’s guns away’, ‘TSA type security at movie theaters’, etc. When governments do more, things most always get worse. If government wants to do more in cases like these, it needs to give more power back to the people. It needs to give us the ability to defend our lives and liberties. It needs to give us our rights back.

As your representative, I will do what I can to ensure that you have the power to defend yourself and your family. I will not support bills to increase government power and scope that take your rights away. The Second Amendment of the United States Constitution will be preserved under my watch. And I will encourage our state legislature to do what it can to continue to provide individuals the tools to defend themselves so something like this never happens in our state.

In Liberty,