Tuesday, January 7, 2014

What direction is "forward" for gun restrictions?

The Washington Times, today, has an article that comments on increased gun sales and ammo shortages in the US, and notes that Congress "stalemated" on gun control regulations, but some states moved "forward". This seems wrong to me. So I wrote Senator Dr. Coburn of Oklahoma:

I resent the slant that mass media, and too many politicians, take about laws and regulations pertaining to guns, gum ownership, and the place of guns in the hands of law abiding citizens.

The Washington Times reports that Congress "stalemated" on increased gun restrictions, but some states moved "forward". I refer to this article, http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2014/jan/6/boom-for-guns-likely-to-trigger-rush-on-ammo/

Part of my resentment is a report that rage and mass shootings, with a single exception, have been perpetrated by people with *personality disorders*, not mental illness. That potential spree killers cannot be predicted, have no tell-tale history of treatment or behavior, and are completely beyond the realm of what gun regulations or laws could affect or prevent.

The other part of the problem, is the very long history of the US Government in the 20th Century, of fighting *losing* "wars" that create chaos, spend buckets of taxpayer money, and fail to accomplish stated goals. Prohibition clearly did not end alcohol production or consumption in the US -- but it did arm gangsters and bring the use of automatic weapons into American society.

The war on drugs has clearly failed to eliminate drug use, or to redirect the flow of money spent on production, trafficking, and use of drugs back into the main economy. The war on drugs does, however, fund an international flow of commerce outside the major American economy -- or the tax revenues that fund the many industries and federal employees dependent on the continued flow of taxpayer monies to "fight drugs". I wonder if Congress hasn't completely misunderstood it's Constitutional roll on drugs and guns -- that the intervention authorized isn't limited to assuring fair business practices.

The other part of gun regulations that bothers me, is that the poor, the minority, and the disenfranchised are those most affected. This has been true since the blacks were disarmed in the face of Ku Klux Klan terrorism, back in the day.

Mostly white-bread communities that have required every home owner to own and possess a firearm have seen declines in all forms of violent crime. FBI statistics over the last decade show the same result of lower rates of violent crimes where states increased the ability of citizens to carry and own firearms.  So -- why aren't we racing to arm people living in the most crime-ridden communities and inner cities? Why do we continue to empower the lawless?

Cities like New York and Chicago demonstrate, vividly, what prohibition of guns means -- a disarmed public not just at the mercy of the lawless, but with increased risk because the *lawless* face less risk.

"Forward" as a description of regulations of guns, of drugs, of clean air and water standards, all should mean closer to a responsible goal. We should be ashamed to refer to regulations that disarm the public, empower the lawless, and make the public less safe as "forward".

Forward should be a more secure America, and increase the security of each American. Gun control, like Prohibition, the war on drugs, the war on poverty, the drive to alternative energy, the obsessions with labor unions and recycling, accomplish little to the good for America: They spend tax dollars, they get politicians elected, many people make a good living convincing people of the "need" for continued government spending. We don't have noticeably fewer drunk drivers, or fewer drug users. And people with lower crime rates *don't* live where citizens cannot own guns or other weapons.

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