One of the best arguments in this last go-around was:
I don't know how you can support that. (Background Checks) Multiple civil rights organizations including the ACLU had strong concerns over the manner in which the data was to be collected and used. Why you would support the people attempting to abolish your civil rights boggles my mind. Just because the bulk of the media and the controlling power in Washington are sugar coating the issue does not change the fact that when you actually read the language of the proposed law few still support it. In fact, I'll bet the supporters have neither read it, or, to a greater concern, relish the thought of amassing that kind of data on Americans.
The reaction from most people is one of genuine shock.
If they are still listening, I then add this:
Why else would they condemn the NRA as they do? Ever notice that they don't once state anything the NRA does other than have lobbyists? Who cares? The AARP, drug companies, and just about every other organized concern have them too - and usually in far superior numbers. You should see the insurance industry's numbers. The fact is, the people who are seeking to abolish our civil rights need us to not notice what they are doing and turn our focus on something else. Sadly, most of the American people are gullible enough to be so tricked. Thankfully enough lawmakers saw the truth about the legislation and did the right thing.
Personally, I think background checks are fine. It is the method, the record keeping, and the privacy issues that are a concern. And those are specifically the topics that the anti-civil rights backers are doing their damnedest to conceal.
Keep the argument on a loss of civil rights, avoid the whole 'gun' topic, and its amazing just how quickly you get their attention.
But just keep pressing it. Why do you want to take away everyone's civil rights? Why are you fighting against civil rights? Don't you care about your civil rights? I am appalled that you would so easily give up civil rights that so many have died to protect. Do not let up.
"But, the guns.."
This has nothing to do with the guns, it's the civil rights of privacy, government invasion of your medical records, and amassing databases on citizens that could be used for who knows what in the future. How can you stand there and tell me that you are so willing to let any bureaucrat that wants to know every detail of your medical history?
The gun debate is not going to be won by logic with many of these people. But get them on the emotional side and you win. Suggest to that young woman that some sleazy government worker might enjoy looking at the X-rays from your last breast cancer screening, or maybe the details from your last OB/GYN visit. Or, even if it is just confined to mental health, how many women do you know that had postpartum depression? It's quite normal and most women recover just fine. But do you want that kind of a flag in your government files?
If after this conversation they try to bring up the Assault Weapon thing, just stop them and ask simply:
Look, the same people pushing for the intrusive assault on our civil rights in regards to the background checks are also the ones advocating the ban on so-called Assault Weapons. If they can be so intellectually dishonest over one subject, do you think for a moment that they wouldn't regarding another? The fact is this - with the exception of several high profile incidents, the most common rifle in the country is very rarely used in committing crimes. The focus should be in helping people who have mental issues that could be dangerous. We don't need big government to intrude in our lives. What we need is a situation where a doctor and patient can be assured of privacy and that those that need the help don't have to worry about the costs. It would cost far less to treat those that need help than to clean up the mess of a Sandy Hook, deal with all the paperwork on what rifle is legal and what isn't and all the other things being advocated.
Nobody wants criminals or the mentally unstable from having deadly weapons. But gun bans, background checks, and other access traps are not going to solve everything. Violent criminals need to be in jail. Mentally unstable people should have the help they need. Think about it, if a person is mentally unstable enough to be considered too dangerous to touch a gun, do you really want them driving a car or hanging out in playgrounds?
When the argument is one of compassion and emotion, the liberal brain can be turned. They won't stop being anti-gun most likely. But their thoughts can be turned to look at the proposals as being the wrong means to the goal. It matters not WHY they no longer support the proposed legislation, only that they do. As the anti-Civil Rights advocates have done, turn their emotional side to providing for the mentally unstable and the securing of dangerous criminals.