Thursday, November 26, 2009

Gun Owners on Health Care

Talking Points Memo ran a fascinating story about the hyper-vigilance on the part of gun owners when reviewing the Health Care Bill. (via Phuck Politics and Laci)

You might not necessarily think that health care reform would end up in the crosshairs of the gun lobby. But you'd be wrong. Gun Owners of America have been raging against the Senate health care bill for all sorts of imagined threats to the Second Amendment, and now the White House has taken notice.

What exactly are their concerns? Well, for instance, "Special 'wellness and prevention' programs (inserted by Section 1001 of the bill as part of a new Section 2717 in the Public Health Services Act) would allow the government to offer lower premiums to employers who bribe their employees to live healthier lifestyles -- and nothing within the bill would prohibit rabidly anti-gun HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius from decreeing that 'no guns' is somehow healthier."

The White House says: "Section 2717 section creates guidelines for insurers to report on initiatives that improve quality of care and health outcomes, and it specifically lists what types of programs would be involved - such as smoking cessation, physical fitness, nutrition, heart disease prevention. There is no mention of guns, and there is no language that could result in higher premiums for gun owners or lower premiums for people who do not own guns."

I call that hyper-vigilance bordering on paranoia. Or could there be another explanation? Is it possible that the folks who are jumping on this bandwagon are happy to have any excuse to oppose President Obama? Doesn't it often seem that the conservative Obama bashers are a little bit too pleased to express their negative opinions?

What's your opinion? Is the concept of "healthier lifestyle" going to eventually include the question of gun ownership, in your opinion? Or is this just another excuse to oppose something they're already opposed to?

Please leave a comment.


  1. "I call that hyper-vigilance bordering on paranoia."

    While I'll admit it is a giant leap, I wouldn't go so far as to say it is paranoia considering that the CDC did try to define gun violence as a "disease" and had to be slapped down for it.

    Never underestimate the creativeness of the Anti-Americans.

  2. I do not know much about this issue myself, but David Kopel seems to have a careful analysis of it here:

  3. Obama's great, but I'll take any excuse to oppose this insurance regulation. I've taken too many econ courses to fall for the free lunch we're being promised.
    But yeah, righties are getting over-sensitive.