Second Amendment

The Fantasy of 'Gun Control'

We don't need yet another ineffective law. We need vigilant citizens and a vigorous defense of Liberty.

Todd Johnson · Oct. 10, 2017

It’s been more than a week since the horrific slaughter perpetrated in Las Vegas and there are still many more questions than answers as state and federal officials continue their investigation into what caused Stephen Paddock to murder 58 innocent people.

Sadly but predictably, a plethora of Democrats rushed to exploit the atrocity. Led by Sen. Diane Feinstein (who recently announced that she is going run for another term), Democrats and a few Republicans are introducing legislation to outlaw bump stocks, an accessory used by Paddock that allowed him to increase his rate of fire. Unfortunately, the bump stock bill, like most gun proposals following mass shootings, would not have stopped the atrocity from occurring and isn’t the panacea that its supporters purport. “Gun control” is both fantasy and fallacy.

Indeed, even one prominent Democrat acknowledged as much, saying, “I’m not sure there is any set of laws that could have prevented [the Las Vegas massacre].” That was … Dianne Feinstein.

Will the elimination of bump stocks eliminate the threat of massacres in the future? Of course not. The effect of a bump stock can be created using a rubber band or a belt loop. So should those items must be banned as well under the guise of protecting society?

The proposed bill also avoids the realities of additive printing from homes. 3D printing has been around for several years and bump stock schematics have existed since 2013. Other components, like lower receivers, are currently being produced in homes around the country so unless the new congressional bill addresses 21st century technology it already has a built-in loophole.

Feinstein’s efforts are nothing but political grandstanding and they do nothing to prevent a repeat of Vegas. Her efforts, instead, have created new problems that didn’t exist prior to the attack.

The senator’s misguided bill is a perfect example of unforeseen second and third effects emanating from flawed logic. After she announced her proposed ban on bump stocks and that owning one would be a criminal offense, gun dealers were inundated with requests for the accessory and most dealers have sold out their inventory of the item.

Feinstein’s bill is also dangerously vague and creates more problems than it solves. As AWR Hawkins explained, “The language of her bill would include bans on other devices, bans that are only implicit at this point. It would simply come down to a bureaucrat deciding the threshold at which semiautomatics are being fired too fast and any accessory that allowed a gun owner to meet that threshold would be banned.”

Gun violence” is a very emotional topic so any discussion about how to prevent it must take into consideration a myriad of factors. However, first and foremost in any conversation about the subject is to acknowledge the fact that some gun owners will do wicked things with their weapons. As will some who own knives or trucks.

Living in a free and open society where the right to bear arms is enshrined in the Constitution means that a small minority will eventually engage in criminal behavior with a gun. However, it’s important to note that while murder with firearms gets a disproportionate amount of media coverage, a quick examination at mortality numbers from 2016 shows that more United States citizens perish from drug overdoses or car accidents than guns — including the suicides used by leftists to grossly inflate the “gun violence” statistic.

The heinous act that took place in Las Vegas was pure evil, but it’s not indicative of an epidemic sweeping the nation. As Mark Alexander poignantly wrote last week, “Let’s call these assailants what they are, and maybe we can begin to address the root causes of the bloody attacks as a necessary part of the dialogue on how to prevent them.”

Feinstein’s legislation does nothing to resolve the problem of violence with guns in America and it only exacerbates an already contentious issue. Americans don’t need more laws on the books. Instead, we all need to be more aware of our surroundings, looking for peculiar behavior, and letting law enforcement know if they observe something out of the ordinary (“see something, say something”). Only by being vigilant citizens can we overcome this scourge.

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