Why Gun Control Is the Answer
The GOP Solution
I just finished reading an article that was logically very well put together by a writer that I've had some major policy disagreements with. In this article, he compares guns to alcohol, illegal drugs, and vehicles.
One argument that he makes is that laws that restrict access to something really do not work. He claimed that during prohibition, there was actually more alcohol in supply and there was more crime related to restricting access to alcohol. Everyone knows that, although certain drugs are illegal, they exist in vast supplies in the United States. I'm not sure I have a rebuttal for that argument.
His second argument is that when someone goes out and drinks and drives and there is a death, we do not ban alcohol or cars. I'd even expand on this argument in that when someone killed eight people in November of 2017 using a van, no one banned vans.
The rebuttal here is that alcohol and cars have a primary use that is not to kill people. When you look at alcohol, most people see a tasty beverage that is used to relax. Most people see cars as transportation. When you consider a gun, its main purpose is to kill or injure living beings.
I know, I know - it's for protection you say. Guns exist to protect. I actually agree with that statement and truly believe that every citizen has the right to own a gun. What I don't believe is that every citizen has the right to own guns that are semi-automatic and have high-capacity magazines. Only law enforcement officials and military personnel need those kinds of devices.
Hunters don't need that style of weaponry. Home protection can be achieved more easily with handguns or shotguns. Those styles will achieve the same result in stopping or scaring off would-be intruders.
What about the threat of a tyrannical government? Believe me, with a fascist like Donald Trump in the White House, I've actually considered going out and buying my own AR-15. He's so obviously partisan and anti-everyone not white—heck, he's anti-anyone unwilling to kiss his rear-end— that it's only a matter of time until we're living the movie V for Vendetta. That being said, I'll wait to hear the conclusion of the Mueller investigation before determining how much danger the opposition is truly in.
But I digress. The rebuttal to the taking away semi-automatic, high capacity weapons argument already exists. We already do the same for fully automatic. The average citizen does not get the ability to own their own M-60 machine gun. A fully loaded tank is not an option for my neighbor Bob, much to his disappointment. I bet he could really knock down a few 12-point bucks with the cannon, but alas, no hunting tanks for Bob.
There are just some weapons that cause too much destruction that the government doesn't want the average citizen to have them in their hands. I believe we've gotten there with semi-automatic, high capacity weaponry. I did the math, the body count in seven mass shootings since 2012 is 203 deaths and close to 1,000 other citizens have been shot.
It appears that the mass shooters keep setting the bar higher and higher too. Orlando had 49 dead and 50 injured. Then came Vegas with 58 dead and a whopping 851 others injured. Anything that can do that much damage in that short amount of time should not be available to someone without professional training.
To further that argument, I'd like to point out a bit of hypocrisy. Think of the case going on in North Korea. We're not trying to stop the man, we're trying to stop him from having nuclear weapons. If it's not the gun, it certainly can't be the nuke.
But Kim Jong Un is mentally unstable. That's the point. There are mentally unstable people all over the United States. The profiteering of the gun industry is preventing those mentally unstable people from being excluded from owning high-powered weapons. Hell, even the GOP Congress passed a law rolling back Obama-era restrictions on citizens with mental issues from purchasing weapons.
If you're going to let mentally unstable people own a gun, and the gun isn't the problem, why do you have a different standard for nuclear weapons? That's just a matter of degree, not philosophy.
Is it time for some gun control?
I certainly welcome an open dialogue here. But just sitting back and waiting for the next shooting, and trying to get to the shooter before he sets a new murder record isn't working out so well.
Will there still be wackos that want to go nuts and will they be able to get a hold of guns? Probably. But removing the high capacity option could save lives by lowering body counts and giving first responders more time to arrive on scene. This will limit the potential severity of the damage, and hopefully it will begin to dissuade some of these crazies.
Right now, doing nothing certainly isn't working.
- It's Time to Ban the AR-15
It's long past time to make the case for banning the AR-15. This article will give the reasons for doing so.