We had another mass shooting this week that amazingly made the headlines. I say amazingly because mass shootings are a more than once a day occurrence in America. While no single or combinations of solutions exist that are perfect there are several simple steps, widely supported by Americans across all demographics, that can reduce the number of shootings and their severity. Yet a powerful political minority stops them from being implemented nationally and in fact fights even their local implementation.
The only effective legislation will be federal legislation. It is simply too easy to cross state lines with or without weapons. Local bans are simply insufficient.
The Assault Weapons Ban should be reinstated. Other than the military and in some cases law enforcement nobody has demonstrated a legitimate need for assault style weapons. Fun or saving reload time at the range are not justifications.
Magazine capacity should be limited. Often a mass shooter is stopped in the reloading process.
All gun sales and transfers should be subject to background checks regardless of where they occur. Are you any less dead if the gun that kills you was bought at a gun show?
All of the above provisions – and they are just the ones that quickly came to mind – would be subject to some parameters that would be determined in the legislative process and perhaps amended after the effects of implementation were experienced. Just like all other laws we have to promote public safety.
While I am both a supporter and beneficiary of the 26th Amendment I didn’t agree with all the “logic” of its supporters but I have to question the wisdom of state legislators who make it easier to buy a gun than a beer.
There are three major arguments I hear from the gun supporters and those they have duped into following them. The first is they (whoever “they” is) are coming for our guns. The reality is that even for the few who are foolish enough to actually want to confiscate all guns it simply cannot be done. The infrastructure and resources simply do not exist. This is a case where de facto trumps (no pun intended) de jure. (On the bold assumption that de jure ever came to pass.)
The “it’s not the guns but the crazy people who have them” argument is commonly advanced especially by elected DC Republicans. I agree that mental health is a factor. (I lack both clinical training and certification in mental disorders so I’ll use common, but clinically inaccurate language.) I, like almost all Americans, think that giving crazy people guns is a bad idea. That is why I support universal background checks. In my mind what is really crazy is giving crazy people easy access to guns. Remember the first bill Donald Trump signed into law made it possible for a person declared incompetent to handle their social security payment competent to legally have a firearm.
The next is that it too soon to talk about solutions. This is part of the “Thoughts and prayers” comment. (In America it is difficult to argue with prayers or any other convenient invocation of religion.) With more than one mass shooting per day when will the right time come? When are we even going to get a two week long break?
Much of this article was both common sense and repetitive. Acknowledging that fact, why has it been so difficult to implement these changes? I’m not asking anyone to become a single issue voter, but you have to ask yourself why you would cast your vote for any official who was standing in the way of improvement and in the process saving the lives of school children. America should be the democracy of people’s, not dollar’s, votes.
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