Help! Help! I’m Being Repressed!

Let me see if I can get this right…

We are coming up on election season, and with it the inevitable discussion of voting rights and the subject of voter identification.  Some argue that requiring someone to obtain and then present an ID card in order to vote disenfranchises that person from exercising their right to vote.  The usual claim is that getting an ID costs money ($12 in my state) and time…and because requiring an individual to travel to a government office, fill out forms, and pay fees may prevent them from getting the ID and thus from voting.  However, the people making this claim are often the same people who regularly call for more gun control.

While claiming a simple ID card represents a violation of voting rights, they expect us to accept that firearms permitting requirements and background check fees represent no infringement at all on the Constitutionally protected civil right to keep and bear arms.  In my state, you can expect to pay between $75 and $85 for a concealed carry training class, which will take from 6 to 8 hours to complete. Then you must make a second trip to your county courthouse and dish out another $60 to the government in order to apply for the license.  (That’s actually a steal compared to a state like Massachusetts, where the permits to own and to carry cost $200, and that’s after a training class which can cost as much as $145…and the state can still deny you a permit simply because it does not believe you have “good reason” for one.  Never mind Massachusetts’ many other restrictions on the exercise of this right.)

So…a $12 identification card and a single trip to the DMV represents disenfranchisement from a civil right, but an eight hour class, $145 in fees, and a trip to the courthouse does not?  Don’t even get me started on whether or not any of this actually affects violent criminals…

Who is the violent criminal?


— Dave Cole

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