This correspondent has repeatedly written the First and Second Amendments of the US Constitution are intertwined and support each other. A power-craving government cannot effectively keep a population disarmed unless it censors information on how to make and use arms.
Billionaire Bloomberg supported Everytown for Gun Safety understands they cannot disarm the population, as long as people are free to transmit information on how to make, modify, and use firearms.
Their solution is clear. Forbid the knowledge of how to make, repair, and use firearms. From everytownsupportfund.org:
Based on our review of the writings by the shooter in the Buffalo mass shooting, it appears that he honed his knowledge of firearms and firearm modifications on YouTube. Just days before his attack, posts attributed to the shooter on Discord read, “I’ve just been sitting around watching youtube and **** for the last few days. I think this is the closest I’ll ever be to being ready. I literally can’t wait another week to do this.”
Technology platforms, such as YouTube, have a responsibility to users and the public-at-large to insure that posts do not incite violence or promote extremist content.
This correspondent, contrary to what Everytown posits, claims Technology platforms, such as YouTube, have a responsibility to users to protect and support their First Amendment rights of free expression.
Everytown admits they request that videos on how to modify guns be taken down. They say they have requested YouTube take down videos on how to make guns (which they call “ghost guns”).
YouTube has policies that censor some content on how to make or modify some guns and accessories. From nbcnews.com:
YouTube’s firearms policy says users can’t post videos that show how to install certain gun accessories, including high-capacity magazines. In a statement on Friday, the company said the videos that the suspect allegedly used to modify his rifle don’t violate those policies.
It is more dangerous to people’s freedom to control the information they are allowed than to control their access to arms. Both are important. If the control over information is extensive enough, people will never attempt to use the arms they may have; they will consider themselves in the best of all possible situations, no matter how badly they are abused. This is the warning in George Orwell’s novel, 1984. It is even more difficult for the people to rise up if the abuse is carefully contrived and increasingly applied over generations, allowing the population to become accustomed to it.
Fortunately, the oligopoly of Big Tech’s control over information appears to be on the edge of collapse. Alternative platforms dedicated to free speech, such as Truth Social and Rumble, are becoming popular. Elon Musk may reform Twitter, from a means of directing cancel culture against its victims to a worldwide sanctuary for free speech.
In a famous case, the US government gave up attempts to restrict the publication of how to build a hydrogen bomb. The First Amendment clearly protects the publication of technology that is already in the public sphere.
What Everytown seeks to do is to convince the distributors of information to censor information it deems to be dangerous.
Everytown is unlikely to succeed.
In the Fifth Circuit, Defense Distributed’s lawsuit against New Jersey’s AG, Gurbir Grewal, was allowed to continue, on the grounds that Grewal violated Defense Distributed’s First Amendment rights when when he threatened to prosecute them for publishing computer code on how to print firearms parts.
It would be a short step for the newly proposed Bureau of Disinformation to censor information they deem “dangerous” to the public.
Unless the Progressive left succeeds in its Supreme Court-packing scheme, it is unlikely the Supreme Court would allow such an egregious violation of the First Amendment, when the inevitable court challenge is effectuated.
Everytown seems to agree with this quote, attributed to Stalin, but disputed:
Ideas are more powerful than guns. We would not let our enemies have guns, why should we let them have ideas?
One of the most important effects of the Right to Keep and Bear Arms, in the Second Amendment of the US Constitution, is the physical embodiment and clear demonstration the power of the government has limits. There are things it is not allowed to do, by law. An openly armed man, in public, is a clear and present demonstration of a Constitutional limit on government.
Progressives hate the idea of limits on government with a passion. It is part of Progressive DNA.
Thomas Jefferson, the third president of the United States, had a view the opposite of Stalin’s supposed quote. In a private letter, shortly before becoming president, he wrote this:
“for I have sworn upon the altar of God eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man.”1
It is clear those who wish for a disarmed public are closer to Stalin’s philosophy than to Thomas Jefferson’s.