DHS Secretary: Gun control is now a national security issue

Thanks for the tip, Jeh. Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson told CBS News that gun control has now become a national security issue in the wake of the Orlando terrorist attack. We have to act now to prevent terrorists from getting their hands of firearms, Johnson insists.

You know what would be helpful in that regard? Not letting them into the US, and defeating them decisively abroad to keep terror networks from inspiring recruits:

Just days after the massacre in an Orlando nightclub left 49 people dead and 53 wounded, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson on Tuesday said that gun control is now a critical element of protecting the U.S. homeland and keeping Americans safe.

“We have to face the fact that meaningful gun control has to be a part of homeland security,” Johnson said in an interview on “CBS This Morning.” “We need to do something to minimize the opportunity for terrorists to get a gun in this country.”

Couldn’t agree more … just as soon as the government proves that the person actually is a terrorist. And maybe we can start by making sure that said terrorists don’t actually provide security to the government in the first place — especially to Johnson’s own agency:

The security company that employed Orlando nightclub shooter Omar Mateen also is a federal contractor for the Homeland Security and State departments — raising more questions about how he passed background checks despite being on the FBI’s radar screen and the level of security at a firm handling sensitive U.S. operations.

Mateen, who killed 49 people and wounded dozens more early Sunday inside the gay nightclub Pulse, started working for G4S Secure Solutions in 2007 and until the attack was employed as an armed guard at a gated retirement community in South Florida.

It’s not as if Mateen’s instability went unnoticed, either:

Gilroy, a former Fort Pierce police officer, said Mateen frequently made homophobic and racial comments. Gilroy said he complained to his employer several times but it did nothing because he was Muslim. Gilroy quit after he said Mateen began stalking him via multiple text messages — 20 or 30 a day. He also sent Gilroy 13 to 15 phone messages a day, he said.

“I quit because everything he said was toxic,” Gilroy said Sunday, “and the company wouldn’t do anything. This guy was unhinged and unstable. He talked of killing people.”

Maybe Johnson should put his own house in order before demanding action from Congress. Why didn’t the federal contractor take action to remove Mateen from access to DHS facilities? Does DHS conduct security reviews of contractor personnel, and if they do, how did they miss Mateen with these kinds of complaints?

You know what that looks like? A national-security issue. Instead, Johnson wants to deflect attention away from his own failures, and also wants the ability to suspend civil rights to Americans who don’t work at DHS and end up under “suspicion”:

On the issue of people on the no-fly list and various other lists being able to purchase a weapon in the U.S., Johnson said, “I believe that that’s something that has to be addressed.”

Maybe it should be addressed with Johnson’s resignation.

By the way, what about the national security issues raised eleven years ago by the 9/11 Commission — securing both the southern and northern borders and overhauling the ineffective visa-tracking program? That report provided the impetus to create the Department of Homeland Security, and as yet none of those missions have come close to completion. Shouldn’t Johnson focus on the “national security issues” that are explicitly under his purview rather than spend his time talking about abrogating the Constitution?

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