Congress Wants Guns in DC. No Problem.

Congress Wants Guns in DC. No Problem.

The District of Columbia Voting Rights Act of 2009, giving the U.S. citizens of the District of Columbia representation in the U.S. House of Representatives, passed in the Senate. But partisan opponents appended an unrelated “poison pill” amendment, a provision to throw out local DC gun laws.

Many congressmen face a dilemma. They want to end two centuries of congressional neglect and give DC citizens something even residents of Baghdad have, voting representation in their national legislature. On the other hand, they do not want to overturn local laws established by the duly-elected city government, critical laws concerning public safety.

Congress: vote “yes.” But add one more amendment to the bill first, one that requires a gun shop in the new Capitol Visitor Center.

The palatial new U.S. Capitol Visitor Center (CVC) has two gift shops; it seems to have two of everything, all gold-plated and congressionally-mandated. One of those gift shops would make a dandy firearms store. U.S. firearms manufacturers could issue special Capitol souvenir handguns (compact, for the tourist trade), and the shop window could display a weekly rotating exhibit featuring the work of custom gunsmiths from each state. What a wonderful boon to economic recovery that could be!

Certainly Congress won’t object to a gun store in their neighborhood. They have no problem putting guns in ours.

If Congress in its wisdom decides to strip both amendments from the bill before passage, well … so be it. It will disappoint Capitol tourists, but Americans will just have to console themselves with righting an injustice two centuries old, and finally living up to our principles of Democracy.

 

Read: “Congress Has the Authority to Do Right by D.C.” by Kenneth Starr and Patricia M. Wald, and  “10 Myths about the District of Columbia,”  by dcvote.org

Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

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13 Responses to “Congress Wants Guns in DC. No Problem.”

  1. Leif Rakur Says:

    I like the idea of Congress requiring a gun shop in the U.S. Capitol Visitor Center.

    They should name it “The Persuader.”

  2. Mike Licht Says:

    Lief Rakur:

    I can’t understand why Congress hasn’t mandated gun sales at the Smithsonian Shops.

  3. Herb Says:

    Brilliant!

  4. brantl Says:

    I would also ask that Kenneth Starr, (if he’s the same Kenneth Starr) being told to shut up, just on general principles.

  5. Johannes Says:

    You talk as if people would think this is a bad idea. I actually think this is a great idea.

    It would hammer home the idea that this country values its people’s right to self protection.

  6. Jake Says:

    Works for me. Perhaps with more armed citizens around (as opposed to disarmed subjects), Congress will be less inclined to pass stupid legislation.

  7. Mike Licht Says:

    brantl wrote: I would also ask that Kenneth Starr, (if he’s the same Kenneth Starr) being told to shut up, just on general principles.

    Yes, the former Special Prosecutor of Starr Report fame. But what he and Judge Wald write about this issue is quite compelling.

  8. Mike Licht Says:

    Jake wrote: Works for me. Perhaps with more armed citizens around … Congress will be less inclined to pass stupid legislation.

    Propose the idea to your Congressperson. Of course, if you live in DC you don’t have one, just a non-voting “Delegate,” even though you pay federal income taxes.

  9. Mike Licht Says:

    Johannes Says: You talk as if people would think this is a bad idea.

    I wouldn’t dream of imposing my ideas on the Congressional communirty — even though they tell my government how to spend locally-raised tax dollars.

    J: I actually think this is a great idea.

    Propose the idea to your Congressperson. Of course, if you live in DC you don’t have one, just a non-voting “Delegate,” even though you pay federal income taxes.

  10. Paul Harris Says:

    And don’t forget the amendment that makes all federal property, especially office buildings, places to legally carry firearms.

  11. Rockotodd Says:

    This is great! But of course Congressmen only do stuff do to us that they can’t pull in their own districts.

  12. Nikolas Schiller Says:

    Lets call it “Capitol Conceal & Carry”

  13. Mike Licht Says:

    Nikolas Schiller wrote: Lets call it “Capitol Conceal & Carry”

    Too confusing. Congressmen already hide their sponsorship of those pork barrel budget earmarks through “Capitol Concealed Cash-and-Carry.”

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