Mission statement:

Armed and Safe is a gun rights advocacy blog, with the mission of debunking the "logic" of the enemies of the Constitutionally guaranteed, fundamental human right of the individual to keep and bear arms.

I can be reached at 45superman@gmail.com.You can follow me on Twitter at http://twitter.com/45superman.

Monday, September 18, 2006

How gun laws "work"

I don't think it's any secret that I have little respect or affection for those who would inflict their distorted view of the world on the rest of us, and impose draconian restrictions on the ownership and use of firearms, but it would be a grave mistake to dismiss their intelligence (or at least cunning). This point is perhaps best illustrated by one of their favorite strategies.

Here's how it works--they point to what they refer to as "gun crime" (as if there are two kinds of crime--"regular ol' crime," and "gun crime"--which we are expected to realize, of course, is much scarier), and point to it as justification for more restrictive gun laws. The fallacy is that, far from reducing crimes, adding yet more laws to the massive profusion we already have just makes for more "gun crime," because now things that had, up until the new laws took effect, been no crime at all, suddenly become "gun crimes."

With the new gun laws giving law enforcement a wider net with which to catch violators, it's easy to see that there will almost inevitably be more arrests and convictions for "gun crimes"--not, mind you, more incidence of "gun violence," (another term with which I have issues--more on that in another post--soon, I promise) but simply "gun crime," much of which (such as possessing a so-called "assault weapon" in a jurisdiction in which they are prohibited) has nothing to do with violence.

So now the advocates of restrictive firearms laws can point to a rise in "gun crime," and use that as justification for still more gun laws, leading to still more "gun crime," and so on, ad infinitum.

It's really quite brilliant--pass more laws, thus having more laws to be broken, thus causing an increase in crime, thus providing justification for yet more laws...etc.

Where does it end? Look across the Atlantic, to the UK. When gun laws first started becoming extremely restrictive, worried gun owners were told that "only" large bore pistols and rifles (large bore being anything larger than .22 rimfire) would be affected, and that even those could be owned by private citizens, but they had to be kept locked up at approved gun clubs. That didn't last long--soon, everything but shotguns became ineligible for private ownership (and those are heavily regulated as well). Now, it's knives, air guns, and even toy guns that are being regulated out of existence. What's next? Will they ban cricket bats? Glassware (broken glass can make a nasty weapon, after all)? Sticks (better cut down all the trees, just to be safe)? Hands? Feet?

It might be tempting to chuckle at the folly of this kind of "thinking," but to do so would be a mistake, because powerful forces, in the U.S. and abroad, would like nothing more than to see the same thing here. Only the vigilance and hard work of those to whom respect for rights reigns supreme will save us from the same dark fate.