Opinion: Opposition to Philip Baruth’s candidacy

By Jeffrey Kaufman, M.D.

Mr. Baruth wrote taking credit for what he calls “common sense gun safety” legislation now in effect in Vermont. But S.55 involved more than expanding the background checks required by federal law, and Vermonters have lost a large margin of public and private safety as a result of Mr. Baruth’s legislative efforts. Now, we’re at higher risk for the massacre of innocents here in Vermont as occurred this past Saturday in Pittsburgh, where 11 Jews were murdered and two injured while honoring the Sabbath and welcoming a new life into the Jewish community. Men, women and children sat in a confined prayer room and were picked off like sitting ducks, nowhere to run, nowhere to hide, while an armed man who announced his intent to kill Jews walked in and attacked them dispatching one after another after another.

This week has been a time of mourning in Vermont, with our American flag flying at half staff. Synagogues around the state have offered memorial services followed by an interfaith gathering at Contois Auditorium. We feel the pain of our Pittsburgh brothers and sisters. Over the last five days anger sets in replacing shock and horror with the recognition and realization of their needless and largely preventable loss. In fact, in Vermont we have been fortunate to experience the nation’s second lowest firearm homicide rate of any state, which experts attribute to a high prevalence of firearms and historically unrestrictive firearm legislation. But that was before Mr. Baruth’s S.55 restrictive and anti-self defense legislation.

Sitting ducks murdered in a gun free zone, unarmed innocents with no one to protect them. By the time a call to 911 went out, police responded, gained entry, exchanged gunfire and wounded the gunman. Eleven innocents lost their lives and six were injured. That’s what happens in gun free zones, like schools and movie theaters, and it’s now more likely to happen in the new restrictive anti-self-defense legislation state of Vermont.

Thank G-D there’s the common sense alternative.

Imagine Bowers having entered the Synagogue yelling he’s going to kill Jews and finding he’s already being tracked by one or more congregants who’ve got him “dead to rights” in their sights. He may well have just turned around and walked our without a shot fired.

According to Torah, preservation of life comes before everything else. Self-defense, even pre-emptive action is permitted, if necessary, to save life. Legislation that interferes with self defense, that interferes with the preservation of life, defies common sense and defies Torah. No one else save the one facing mortal danger may rightfully decide what tools or weapon type to carry, nor the number or capacity of magazines. For once facing death it’s too late to prepare.

Preservation of life is the most basic instinct — reflexive, inborn. You can no more legislate against self defense than you can legislate against breathing.

I oppose Mr. Baruth’s candidacy as he ranks the preservation of life — what I consider to be sacrosanct — with such casual disregard that he has passed laws restricting self-defense and believes this has opened doors to pass additional laws further restricting self-defense in the future. I oppose the candidacy of all who would act similarly.

Dr. Jeffrey Kaufman is an internal medicine specialist in Burlington.

Image courtesy of St. Louis Circuit Attorney's Office

11 thoughts on “Opinion: Opposition to Philip Baruth’s candidacy

  1. Vermont Constitution Article 16. [Right to bear arms; standing armies; military power subordinate to civil]
    That the people have a right to bear arms for the defence of themselves and the State–and as standing armies in time of peace are dangerous to liberty, they ought not to be kept up; and that the military should be kept under strict subordination to and governed by the civil power.

    Philip Baruth has shown, time and again, that he does not respect this, or the oath of office that he took.

  2. Voting Away Our Rights

    Every candidate that is elected to either the state or federal legislature is required to take an oath to uphold and defend the Constitution of their respective states or in the case of U.S. congressmen and senators the Constitution of the United States which is the supreme law of the land under Article 6.
    In Vermont elected officials take their oath under penalty of perjury. Progressive and Democrat politicians take that oath with no intention of honoring it. Reading our founding documents and the founders writings you will find that Progressive Socialism is in direct conflict with our Constitution. The Progressive Socialists cherry pick the parts of the Constitution they favor but ignore the parts which keeps us a uniquely free people.
    An example of this duplicity are abortion rights. In the case of Roe v Wade the Supreme Court gives women the right to abortion but that right is not enumerated in the constitution. Progressives consider Roe v Wade “settled law” and state that it should not be overturned. On the other hand they pass so called “gun safety” laws which are in direct violation of the Supreme Courts decision’s of Heller & McDonald. Hillary Clinton stated if elected wanted those court decisions over turned. Wouldn’t those court decision’s be considered “settled law” ? The 2nd Amendment our “right to keep and bear arms” is enumerated in the Constitution and is in the Bill of Rights.
    Another example of their infidelity to the Constitution was on display at the Kavanaugh Hearings where the Democrats did their best to shred the 6th Amendment by not allowing Judge Kavanaugh to face his accuser and wanted him the accused to prove his innocence.
    Progressive Democrats fear ‘constitutionalist’ supreme court justice’s that would follow the Constitution they hide behind when necessary while calling them extremists and radicals for wanting to follow the Constitution as written and not legislate from the bench. Why wouldn’t they want a supreme court justice that would follow the Constitution as written for the document they swore an oath to uphold and defend.
    The only power the government can exercise is what is enumerated in the Constitution. The Bill of Rights are the absolute civil rights that government cannot infringe upon without changing the Constitution thru Article 5. Alexander Hamilton wrote in Federalist No.51 that no legislative act contrary to the Constitution can be valid.
    Our rights do not end or begin at the border of any state. No legislature, state or federal court, Supreme or otherwise can vote away our rights. Every politician running for office should be asked the following questions. 1. Is the Constitution the supreme law of the land? 2. Do we need government’s permission to exercise a right? 3. Will you honor your oath of office? If they will not honor that oath they are not worthy of your vote. If elected they will vote away your rights with impunity.

    • Excellent comment. What you’ve written is the reason those who want to operate extra-Constitutionally say the Constitution is a “living document.” What they mean is they want to take away your rights and freedoms and impose on you their idea of how you should live.

    • I agree 100%. This was very well written and should be out there for all to see.
      The leftist want to completely destroy our 2nd amendment and will try at all costs.

      • Leftist’s want to destroy the entire Constitution with special attention to the Second amendment.

        Missing the Marx: Gun Control’s Future is … Communism?A Real Long-Term Solution to Gun Violence Thru Marxism

        To address one of America’s deadliest problems, start by cornering the market.
        by William V. Glastris Jr.

        After every high profile crime committed with a firearm of any sort, there are always calls for gun control. But one particular proposal this week managed to distinguish itself amid the usual din, if only for its audacity and what it reveals about the mindset of people who wish to disarm their fellow Americans.
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        In a lengthy article in Washington Monthly, private equity investor William V. Glastris, Jr. pitched a plan under which the federal government would obtain the means of handgun production, ban handgun importation, and target the current private handgun stock with a massive, nationwide “buyback.” The plan’s ultimate goal would be for “the government to significantly lower the supply—and thereby raise the price—of handguns … .”

        Glastris admits the proposal is “not modest” but insists “Americans deserve broad, sweeping reforms,” rather than “years of painstaking incrementalism … .” He also dismisses the more conventional gun control agenda of banning semiautomatic rifles and “high capacity” magazines, closing the “gun show loophole,” and imposing categorical prohibitions on certain criminals. “[I[t is hard to argue that these reforms, even if they all went into effect, would do much more than put a modest dent in the problem,” Glastris writes.

        There will come a time, Glastris speculates, when “Democrats control both the White House and Congress.” He continues, “When that moment arrives, wouldn’t it be better if, instead of debating marginal fixes, there were new ideas on the table to actually address the root of the problem by substantially reducing the number of guns in circulation?”

        Of course, there have been other “visionaries” who have dreamed of common ownership of the means of production. Karl Marx and Vladimir Lenin come to mind.


  3. There is a reason All of us in the Law Enforcement community from locals to feds like myself opposed S.55. What is worse an intelligent alternative was crafted by law enforcement and IGNORED by Baruth and others.
    The law enforcement proposal Did not hamper any rights. You want a gun safety class every FFL offered to make that a part of a gun sale. The idea a hunter safety course from when you were 12 is good enough is just preposterous. Reality is shooting is a perishable skill so might as well have a quick 15-30 minute demonstration at time of sale and many FFL’s do this already.
    The other aspects of the law enforcement version of the bill were all addressing criminal/negligent behavior of the individuals and security weaknesses in our public schools.

  4. I oppose Mr. Baruth and many others like him in Montpelier,for his violations of his oath,Vermont and the Federal Constitutions,he is not fit to serve any office of any capacity.

  5. Whenever a politician uses the phrase “common sense” in the same sentence with gun control, you know what they’re up to has nothing to do with neither common sense nor the common good. Mr. Baruth, if he were being honest, which he is not, would admit his real motivation is taking the right to own guns away from Vermonters, and ultimately all Americans. People like Mr. Baruth see every form of gun right grabbing as a step in the right direction, a link in the chain, and inanely, progress. People like Mr. Baruth cannot wrap their minds around the reason the Founders gave us the Second Amendment, which was to protect us against tyrannical government. Were he to have his way, Mr. Baruth with be part of that tyrannical government, and would be perfectly comfortable making decisions for you that you should make for yourself, and telling you how to live. He is about the last person we need in such a position. Vermonters should understand that a vote for Baruth is actually a vote against common sense, and indeed a vote against themselves. If you want to do yourself and your state a favor, vote only for Republicans for state Senate.

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