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Catholics encouraged to forfeit Second Amendment right for 'peace'

Published in Blog on June 06, 2023 by Brianna Kraemer

Newark Cardinal Joseph Tobin is urging Catholics to give up their right to own firearms under the Second Amendment of the Constitution.

In an effort to actively resist gun violence, the cardinal wrote in a recent letter that prayer, advocacy, and voluntary self-restraint are necessary steps that should be taken.

While forfeiting the right to own a firearm is "perhaps the most challenging and controversial proposal," he believes it is "the best thing we can do to change the culture of violence that threatens us today."

"The voluntary self-restraint that I am calling for will not solve the problem of gun violence all by itself, but it can help us change our culture from one that is obsessively focused on individuals' rights to a society dedicated to ensuring the common good," Tobin suggests. 

The letter argues that weak communities are threatened by 'unrestrained gun ownership,' which allows mentally ill and politically motivated people to take their rage out on bystanders. 

Despite having the right to own a gun, the cardinal insists that setting aside this right is an act of pursuing the truth and peace.

SEE ALSO: Mark Levin declares: our Constitution will save us, not Congress

"It's true that we have a second amendment right to bear arms, but rights always involve responsibilities," he writes. "Let's voluntarily set aside our rights in order to witness the truth that only peace, and never violence, is the way to build a free society that is lived concretely in our homes, our neighborhoods, our communities, our nation and our world."

While looking out for the common good is necessary, maintaining individual autonomy is not selfish or immoral, something the cardinal suggests to the congregation. In fact, one could argue defending the Second Amendment is a duty rooted in the pursuit of the common good. 

As put by George Washington, "A free people ought not only to be armed, but disciplined..." Some Americans may be lacking discipline, but all Americans will lack freedom if the masses become unarmed. 

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