One month from today, Barack Obama will become a memory – good for some, bad for others – and in his wake will remain a legacy of clemency, as he exercised Monday, to people that White House counsel Neil Eggleston, “exemplify his belief that America is a nation of second chances.”
According to the Washington Times, 49 of the people affected by Obama’s generosity on Monday had been “convicted of firearms offenses.”
If the president is so willing to cut armed criminals some slack, why has he been so keen on treating honest Americans like, well, criminals? That’s the question many Second Amendment activists have been asking long before Monday’s announcement.
So-called “universal background checks” amount to a presumption of guilt toward anyone wanting to exercise a fundamental civil right; that is, anybody wishing to purchase a firearm, whether at retail or from a friend they’ve known for decades, must first prove their innocence.
The Hill said Monday’s clemencies affected 231 federal inmates, “the most in a single day by any president in U.S. history.” The Hill also noted that “criminal-justice reform advocates” want him to “pick up the pace before he leaves office on Jan. 20.”
In the month remaining for Obama, Eggleston anticipates more forgiveness toward convicted criminals, according to CNN. So far, the cable news agency reported, the president has granted clemency to 1,324 people. He has also commuted the sentences of 1,176 people, including 395 life sentences.
CNN also noted that “a majority of the commutations involved drug related charges.”
There were also 78 pardons, bringing Obama’s total to 148.
On the subject of “second chances,” perhaps the president will encourage Capitol Hill’s anti-gun rights extremists to clear the way for restoration of rights investigations. The law has been in place for years, but funding was cut off years ago for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives to conduct those investigations.
This was one of 11 gun law reforms suggested recently by Alan Gottlieb, chairman of the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms, in an Op-Ed: “Restoration of Rights. Remove the barriers that prevent the Justice Department from conducting restoration of rights procedures. The law is already in place, but Capitol Hill anti-gunners have blocked its implementation for two decades. That must end.”