Response to Stanley Campbell

Response to Stanley Campbell

By Kelly P. Champlin

Response to Stanley Campbell

by Kelly P. Champlin

Things are getting more interesting, aren’t they, Mr. Campbell? If I understand your latest diatribe correctly, you went to a gun show and attempted to purchase a firearm, but you were not able to complete the sale. I believe your exact words were “I almost walked off with a weapon…” I do hope that you realize that this is a crime? A felony, if I’m not mistaken, in the state of Illinois. All firearms sales in this state require a Firearms Owners ID card issued by the State Police, whether those sales are between a state resident and a federally licensed dealer, or between two private citizens.

Let’s go to the last couple of sentences in your letter, regarding “just how they (meaning gun-owners) propose to keep guns away from the criminals.” Mr. Campbell, we propose the same thing that we always have—enforcement of the current laws. New laws do absolutely no good when the existing laws are not enforced. New laws do absolutely nothing when federal offenses are plea bargained away.

This is an old argument between the left and the right. Everyone is entitled to an opinion on the subject, but most of us are content to let a few people argue about it—after all, that’s what this country is based on, isn’t it? The freedom that our forefathers guaranteed? The one thing that I find inexcuseable is the willingness of some people (even after Sept. 11) to throw our rights away like so much chaff—just toss it to the wind, watch it disappear. Why is it that firearms ownership is so demonized by the vocal minority? It is just as much a right as free speech—and without that Second Amendment, Mr. Campbell, your First Amendment is gone.

If you are willing to stand up on your soapbox and say to all and sundry that you are a fool, you go right ahead. I’ll even applaud at the end of your speech, shake your hand and tell you “Well done. It’s your right to give the world your point of view.” And you can be sure that it is your “right”—this is supposed to be a “free” country.

Have you ever asked yourself whether or not you are willing to kill or die for your family, your values, your honor? Think about that for a minute. Men and women from all corners of this country have answered that question, and a lot of those who answered died on the battlefield. Your right to free speech was not given to you, Mr. Campbell. It was bought and paid for with blood. Freedom is never “free”.

One last thing, Mr. Campbell. Insults and name calling are rarely wise. Especially not when you are insulting a good majority of the tax paying, law-abiding, gun-owning citizens of the United States. Now, I’m sure I have a really good recipe for crow… Oh, well, I’m sure we can find a way to cook that bird after you come in to the class.

Kelly P. Champlin, president, Pine Tree Pistol Club, is an NRA Certified Firearms Instructor, IPSC Class “C,” Competitor, Open Division.

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