Submitted by Jay Chambers

With the media circus and its political sideshow (no, those two weren’t mixed up) around gun control, is anyone else thinking maybe it’s time for straight answers on the Commander-in-Chief’s perspective on gun ownership?

Before racing into things, it’s important to note that President Trump is an accomplished negotiator, and he wasn’t kidding when he promised to make “good deals” as president. Commentators on both sides of the aisle seem to see his opening bid (read: initial Tweets on the subject) as the endgame for gun control in America. But that’s patently incorrect.

Here’s the Ballgame:

The President sees the value of give-and-take, especially its publicity power. To be honest, it’s refreshing compared to the previous Administration’s inaction and the congressional mode of entrenchment. And, crazily enough, it might just get us somewhere.

In the frame of negotiation, President Trump’s February 22 Tweet has gained notoriety in both camps of the gun control issue, calling for “Comprehensive Background Checks,” a raise the age limit for purchasing weapons to 21, and a ban on the sale of bump stocks. The first point to glean about Trump’s view of gun ownership is his willingness to bring something to the table, to play ball, in the gun-control debate.

Whereas most politicians are sticking to their guns (even if it’s just finger guns for the left), Trump wants to get something done amid the verbal crossfire. And that’s an excellent thing for the United States. The prolonged, nation-wide screaming matches are a colossal waste of political capital and public attention. Plus, we know Trump is keen on filling federal benches only with judges who protect the Second Amendment as a priority, so don’t panic just yet.

Response to a Sobering Picture:

Trump’s support of stronger background checks and minimum age raises is a direct response to the fact that a young man who legally owned guns became a mass murderer and is currently serving a life sentence. It’s right for him to respond directly to the fact that a mass tragedy with these components happened on his presidential watch.

Through his campaign and to the present, Trump has not backed down on the fact that schools should not be gun-free zones. That social experiment is a failure with a body count, and it’s past time that it comes to an end. The left pushes their hyperbole (every teacher gets a Glock, SWAT teams in elementary schools) to discredit President Trump’s opinion and the informed, common-sense conclusion of Americans who pay attention.

Think about this statistic (the President has): 100% of school shootings happen in gun-free zones.

Based on that humbling statistic and current events, shouldn’t even the most pro-gun Americans agree that President Trump is right to bring both parties to the table to negotiate a practical, overdue solution?

In response to some of the latest massacres, President Trump emphasized the duty of law enforcement to follow up on reports of suspicious activity, such as unstable behavior or buying large amounts of ammunition or body armor. He argues that precautions such as these are necessary to protect the rights of good gun owners from being washed away in the aftermath of a crime that could be prevented if people respond to early signs effectively. Again, President Trump reacted directly to the facts of real mass shootings with a real possible solution, or at least an attractive bargaining chip.

Trump’s Bottom Line: Guns Are Commendable Tools.

When one peels the political layers off of President Trump’s many discussions of gun control, they’ll find that he fully supports gun ownership. However, he thinks of guns primarily as personal defense tools, not so much as a rugged hobby. The prioritization of his support reflects that.

In fact, as of 2016, Trump carried a personal weapon regularly (with a concealed weapons permit in New York). Although it was a lofty campaign promise, he still stands by his support of making concealed-carry permits carry over into every state the way that driver’s licenses do. Trump continually emphasizes the ability of good people who own guns to become first responders in a crisis, such as a mass shooting or armed burglary.

Mainstream media pokes fun at his comment that he would have run into the school shooting in Parkland, “even without a weapon,” especially given the deer in the rifle scope that replaced the law enforcement officials on the scene. However, if law enforcement won’t run into a dangerous situation to save kids and Congress won’t get to work on keeping kids safe at school in the first place, the only solution is for good citizens to own guns, train with them, and carry them regularly.

So, while President Trump isn’t a fan of no-holds-barred gun ownership and his stance on stricter gun control is not currently finalized, he firmly believes that Americans should own guns and use them when they can to prevent tragedy.