Matt Towery

For years now, we've heard from all types, ranging from the "over-informed" to the just plain ignorant, claiming that under President Obama the nation isn't just moving towards "socialism," but rather in a direction in which liberty truly disappears quickly and tyranny creeps in and takes its place.

But even for those who may have been primarily fiscal conservatives and who otherwise believed social policy should lean toward a "mind your own business" approach, several of the gun-control proposals coming from President Obama likely came as a shock.

I don't even want to get into what qualifies as a military assault weapon or any of the hardcore issues Obama addressed in his unveiling of new executive orders and proposed legislation related to the regulation of firearms. The two issues of universal background checks and some heightened degree of physician involvement in helping deal with guns in America are enough to cause many to gasp for air.

It has been an ongoing debate as to why the Second Amendment guarantees a right to keep and bear arms. We've all heard the strict interpretation of that right, holding closely to the amendment's language stating "a well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state ..." and suggesting that there was never an intent for citizens to simply carry all manner of firearms for whatever purpose they so choose. And then there are interpretations, as upheld by the Supreme Court, stating that the Second Amendment creates new rights that go beyond simply that of protecting against the taking of arms by a tyrannical government but instead allowing Americans to keep and preserve armed weapons for peaceful purposes and protection.

That's very simplistic history, but here is the nuance that cannot even be reduced to a "Cliffs Notes" explanation. Background checks for every sale of every gun in America is intrusion into our privacy and a concept that would likely have a chilling effect on the lawful transfer of weapons to a level beyond imagination. And, of course, sales between those who disregard laws like, oh, say, burglary, likely would tend to ignore background requirements.

Matt Towery

Matt Towery is a pollster, attorney, businessman and former elected official. He served as campaign strategist for Congressional, Senate, and gubernatorial campaigns. His latest book is Newsvesting: Use News and Opinion to Grow Your Personal Wealth. Follow him on Twitter @MattTowery