The Corner

Politics & Policy

Meghan McCain Is Right about AR-15 Confiscation, and You Know It

A customer holds an AR-15 rifle at a gun store in Provo, Utah, in 2016. (George Grey/Reuters)

​​Meghan McCain has caused a little outrage storm by saying on TV’s The View that Beto O’Rourke’s gun-confiscation plan would, if effected, prompt “a lot of violence.”

​​Per the Daily Beast:

​​​​The former Texas congressman, whose presidential campaign has been re-animated by his often visceral responses to two mass shootings in Texas, said he was disheartened by commentary from, among others, Meghan McCain, warning that forcing Americans to sell their assault rifles would prompt violence.

“I just I think that kind of language and rhetoric is not helpful,” the former congressman told The Daily Beast prior to joining a Wednesday marathon climate town hall on CNN. “It becomes self-fulfilling; you have people on TV, who are almost giving you permission to be violent and saying ‘you know this is this is going to happen.’”

​​​​O’Rourke brought up McCain’s name unprompted after “The View” host had said, earlier this week, that an attempt by the government to compel AR-15 owners to sell back their weapons would prompt “a lot of violence.”​​

​​There are just two types of people engaging in this debate: People who know that Meghan McCain is correct, and people who are pretending that they do not know that Meghan McCain is correct. It doesn’t not especially matter what your politics are, or what you think of private gun ownership in the United States. It does not matter, either, whether you want Meghan McCain to be right or you want her to be wrong. If you have read any American history at all, you know that, as a matter of dull, neutral fact, McCain is correct. Americans defied and resisted the prohibition of alcohol, often violently, even after it was passed into law by a supermajority in Congress and in the states. And, eventually, they won. Americans have defied and violated the prohibition of drugs, often violently, since it began. And, slowly, but surely, they are winning. Americans already ignore most gun-control measures — even in states with significant pro-gun control majorities. Were confiscation to be tried, they would defy and resist it, often violently. And, eventually, they would win, as they did the last time around.

They would not do so because Meghan McCain gave them the idea. They would do because this is what happens in American when prohibitions are tried. The parties affected by the prohibition do not comply with the prohibitionists, and the ones that do comply — or that initially sided with the prohibitionists — turn out to have a remarkably low tolerance for the violence that is necessary to bring everyone else into line. Meghan McCain knows this. And so do you.

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