While President Donald Trump is getting some flak for his reaction to Tuesday’s terror truck mayhem in Manhattan – calling for tougher vetting for immigrants – that’s not really any different from calls by anti-gunners for stricter background checks and other penalties on American gun owners following Las Vegas, or any other high-profile shooting incident.
After Las Vegas, the gun prohibition lobby rolled out the same wish list it has offered for the past several years in reaction to tragedies including Sandy Hook, Orlando, San Bernardino or Santa Barbara. Anti-gunners have an agenda that has been repackaged a few times, but it still contains essentially the same ingredients.
A commentary at CBS News by Michael Graham perhaps unintentionally raises an interesting point about the left’s hypocrisy when he noted, “Trump’s critics cried hypocrisy, pointing out that Mr. Trump deferred calls for changes in gun laws two days after the Las Vegas massacre — ‘we’ll be talking about gun laws as time goes by,’ he said. White House spokesperson Sarah Sanders defended Mr. Trump, pointing out that, unlike restrictive gun laws, ‘the president has been talking about extreme vetting and the need for that for the purpose of protecting the citizens of this country since he was a candidate – long before he was president.’”
In the aftermath of Las Vegas and other mass shootings, it has been Democrats and gun prohibitionists who wanted “enhanced background checks” – which is “extreme vetting” by another name – for anyone wanting to purchase a firearm.
The suspect in Tuesday’s rampage, Sayfullo Saipov, reportedly intended to continue his attack across the Brooklyn Bridge. Perhaps the smashed vehicle simply couldn’t make the trip. Saipov was stopped, as noted by Alan Gottlieb at the Second Amendment Foundation, by a man with a gun. It happened to be a New York police officer who was literally “right there.”
There is something else emerging in the New York case as it did about the Las Vegas shooter. These were not spur-of-the-moment attacks. Saipov allegedly had planned this attack for possibly a year. The Las Vegas killer, Stephen Paddock, had amassed several firearms over the course of at least several months. Until firearms dealers become clairvoyant, there is no way to predict what anyone might do weeks, months or even a year over the horizon.
There does appear to be on significant difference between Saipov and Paddock. According to the Washington Post, Saipov “appeared on the radar of law enforcement in connection with the investigations of other suspects” that were apparently under scrutiny in the past. Until Oct. 1, Paddock wasn’t on anybody’s radar and he had passed background checks when buying guns at retail.
Trump critics on the Left once again have displayed a bit of hypocrisy in all of this. CNN ran an analysis piece Wednesday that declared, “Trump is more than willing to seize on tragic events when they confirm his previous political and policy beliefs. He will effectively ignore them when they don’t.”
How is that different from anti-gunners pushing their agenda after a tragedy but ignoring facts that do not conform to their narrative?