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Carroll County Times
Carroll County Times Opinion

Shoemaker: Obama still off the mark on gun control

I've been saying for some time that Barack Hussein Obama is the worst president of my lifetime. And it has taken some doing to take that title from Jimmy Carter, that's for sure. His reaction to the recent terrorist attack in Orlando has underscored that notion in my mind. The incompetent-in-chief's address to the nation on Sunday following the shooting is a case in point.

He took to the microphone and politicized a tragedy in which hours before 49 folks had lost their lives, and more than 50 had been injured, to call for more gun control in a not-so-subtle kind of way. This is because that's been his agenda since bursting onto the national scene in 2007-2009: grabbing guns from those simple folks who cling to them and religion. It's no state secret. It's well documented. And every time there's a national crisis, he defaults to the need for more gun control. Heck, I bet that on college campuses, they've turned this predictability into a drinking game.

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I say baloney! We don't have a gun control problem in the United States; there are a heck of a lot of laws on the books already. What we have is a terrorism problem. Yet, in the wake of Fort Hood, San Bernardino and Orlando (just to name a few), the president has admonished us not to rush to judgment in ascribing motives to the shooters. After all, he believed that the Fort Hood gunman, Nidal Hasan, could have been engaging in workplace violence. Furthermore, the ties of the perpetrators of the San Bernardino attack (Syed Rizwan Farook and Tashfeen Malik), and the Orlando shooter (Omar Mateen) to ISIS weren't mentioned by Obama. Specifically, after Orlando, he said the attack was "an example of the kind of homegrown extremism that all of us have been so concerned about."

Really? Could the president possibly be more out of touch with reality? Mr. President, America doesn't have a gun control problem. Just look at Paris, which has the world's toughest gun control. America — and the world, for that matter — has an ISIS problem. America has a radical Islamic extremist problem. And a big part of the problem is that you refuse to label the problem as such.

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But you see, that wouldn't fit Obama's world view. It wouldn't be politically correct. For this is the same guy who has said "that experience guides my conviction that partnership between America and Islam must be based on what Islam is, not what it isn't. And I consider it part of my responsibility as president of the United States to fight against negative stereotypes of Islam wherever they appear."

Well, that's nice. And I firmly believe that not all Muslims are terrorists, or wish us ill. However, until an occupant of the White House has the gumption to identify Muslim extremists as a grave threat to the safety and security of Americans — and not point the finger at guns as the boogeyman — we aren't going to adequately focus on the problem.

As Sen. Ben Sasse, R-Nebraska, said: "With all due respect, Mr. President, you're wrong. Telling the truth about violent Islam is a prerequisite to a strategy — a strategy you admitted you don't have. It is the commander-in-chief's duty to actually identify our enemies and to help the American people understand the challenge of violent Islam."

See, the radicals are the problem. Law-abiding gun owners are not. As Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus stated, "We should not make it harder for law-abiding Americans to defend themselves when radical Islamic terrorists are successfully launching attacks on U.S. soil."

Exactly! After 7 1/2 years, perhaps it's time you woke up, Mr. President.

Haven Shoemaker is a state delegate representing District 5. He writes from Hampstead.


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