Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu once again is trying to get on the conservative media circuit promoting
himself his anti-Obama, anti-gun-control campaign.
Babeu is joining a chorus of sheriffs criticizing President Barack Obama's gun-control efforts. Conservative blogger for right-wing cnsnews.com, notes that this is the trend from Florida to California.
While making appearances on radio and television stations, Babeu wags his squirt gun at Obama for being one of the "many politicians" using "several tragic attacks against innocent adults and children by criminals armed with guns ... as a means to push their agenda related to gun control."
For instance, on his Facebook page, Babeu whines about the president's not responding to a letter he sent him on January 16 regarding gun control. And we can't imagine why Obama wouldn't respond, given that the letter was (ahem) full of insightful and thought-provoking commentary.
For example, Babeu tells Obama that more Americans are "killed by impaired drivers involved in automobile collisions" and asks,"[Why] you not seeking to remove vehicles from our roadways?"
Babeu writes, "It's because you realize it's the drivers who are at fault and not the vehicle they were driving. This same analogy hold true with these shootings ...it's not the gun that's at fault but rather the criminals who use them."
In fact, it is ridiculous to compare drunk drivers (and cars) and criminals (and guns) during a discussion about gun control since there are laws that regulate both driving and drinking.
Laws require that drivers pass a test before driving, require that drivers obtain motor-vehicle insurance to protect themselves and those around them and, at a certain age, that they reapply for driving privileges. Laws also dictate that individuals reach a certain age before drinking, restrict the sale of alcohol during certain hours, and sometimes ban booze altogether.
Besides, when someone is busted for a DUI, existing laws dictate that the individual's driving privileges are suspended or revoked. So that effectively removes vehicles from our roadways.
In his letter, Babeu also reminds Obama that he is "not a dictator or a king, who can act unilaterally and ignore our legislative process of law making."
(The legislative process is law making, by the way.)
Babeu clearly ignores the decades-long presidential tradition of enacting executive orders on everything from veterans' benefits to foreign relations, food, housing, and Native Americans -- all long before Obama took over and apparently turned that same tool into a monarch's wand.
During an appearance on the local Fox affiliate, Babeu generically blathered on about Obama acting to infringe on the Constitutional rights and liberties of Americans. He complained there wasn't a focus on dealing with mentally ill individuals.
But not once during that nearly 10-minute appearance, did either of morning talk show hosts ask Babeu specifically which of Obama's proposals were running afoul of the Constitution. And neither bothered to point out that several of the actions Obama plans to take to reduce gun violence address mental illness.
Among them: removing health-related barriers that may prevent states from making information available to the background check system, directing the Centers for Disease Control to research the causes and prevention of gun violence, making sure doctors aren't prohibited from asking their patients about guns in their homes, clarifying for health care providers that no federal law prohibits them from reporting threats of violence, and launching a national dialogue on mental health.
We can't believe that any of them actually read the executive actions Obama rolled out.
Keep Phoenix New Times Free... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Phoenix with no paywalls.