Chicago lawyer and former federal prosecutor Ronald Safer is incensed that the federal government is not adequately hell-bent on infringing that which shall not be infringed.
Why aren't politicians even engaging in the debate about how to stop these shootings?Perhaps because the surest way to prevent such shootings is to stop requiring that people be unable to effectively resist--and ending policies that create "defenseless victim zones" tends to frighten politicians.
On Feb. 8, a majority of Congress found time to urge the U.S. Supreme Court to strike down a law that prohibits the possession of handguns in the District of Columbia. The fate of that law, passed by a City Council that represents a community desperate to stop gathering to mourn the shooting deaths of their children, will be determined by the court this term."Found the time?" How much time did they have to "find" to scribble their signatures on an amicus brief? And about "that law, passed by a City Council that represents a community desperate to stop gathering to mourn the shooting deaths of their children"--it certainly has done a bang-up job of preventing violence, hasn't it? I mean, murder rates in D.C. have plummeted since the 1976 ban, right? Oops, never mind.
Were the members of Congress who urged defeat of that law moved to action by their long study of the history behind the 2nd Amendment's pronouncement about well-regulated militias? Or were they moved by crass self-interest?"Crass self-interest" would, I suppose, refer to an interest in getting reelected. As (ostensibly) representatives of their constituents, presumably the best way to ensure reelection is to uphold the will of those constituents (you know--the whole "of the people, by the people, for the people" thing). Guess what--apparently nearly three of every four of The People believe that the Second Amendment protects an individual's right to keep and bear arms. According to Ronald, though, an elected official who acknowledges both the Constitution and the will of his constituents is apparently motivated by selfishness.
Perhaps there are some clues in history.Ah--the old "easily converted to fully automatic" myth--how often does one hear of such conversions being performed (there was a newspaper article about that subject--it's no longer available at the newspaper's website, but can be seen here)? As for such guns not being "for hunters or homeowners," I wonder if Ronald has asked any hunters or homeowners who own such firearms what they think of that statement. Maybe he ought to ask Jim Zumbo about it.
Congress, including some of the same people who urged the court to strike down the Washington law, allowed the federal ban on assault weapons to lapse. These semiautomatic weapons, many of which are easily convertible to automatic weapons that allow its shooter to spray an area with 30 or more bullets in seconds, are not for hunters or homeowners.
When I prosecuted the leaders of the Gangster Disciples, I learned that these weapons were as precious to gangs as the drugs they trafficked. At that time, these weapons were unlawful and difficult for the gangs to obtain, making them ripe for undercover sting operations that led to prosecutions.Since so-called "assault weapons" were not "unlawful" (those made/imported before the law's effective date in 1994 were perfectly legal to own, buy, sell, and use, and very similar guns, made during the ban, with just some "evil" features omitted, were perfectly legal as "post-ban" firearms--the VPC bemoans that situation here), it would seem that these Gangster Disciples leaders were not exactly criminal masterminds, if they could be baited into arrests with Ronald's infantile entrapment schemes.
Thanks to Congress, prosecutors and law enforcement officers wrestling with gangs have to come up with new and different strategies.Yeah--that pesky Constitution sure makes locking up the bad guys more difficult. Just think how many we could convict if we didn't have to deal with the Fourth and Fifth Amendments.
Maybe it is just a coincidence that many of the mass killings -- and countless other, less notorious, but far more common shootings -- are done with semiautomatic weapons.Oh--so now it's not just "assault weapons" we're going after--it's all semi-automatic weapons, eh? Obama must be proud.
The Chicago Tribune recently described the patchwork nature of the states' gun-control laws. If gun control is the answer, that solution can only come from the federal government"Gun control" is not the answer, unless the question is "What violates the Constitutionally guaranteed fundamental human right of the individual to keep and bear arms, and also fails to save lives?"