Minnesota State Rep. Kim Norton (D-Rochester) isn’t planning on running for re-election, so has decided to spend her last days in public service pushing for expensive, idiotic, nanny-state, feel-good measures which she knows won’t pass. As stated in the Rochester Post-Bulletin piece Norton to push for stricter gun laws in final term: “Fed up with gun violence, retiring Rep. Kim Norton said she plans to introduce a package of ‘common sense’ gun law changes during her final legislative session.” . . .
“I just can’t take it anymore. This will be a bill that hopefully will be common sense, smart things that we could do that would help us get a little bit of a grip of who has guns, where they are,” Norton said.
As you might gather from her statement, one idea that animates her is that dearly held, evergreen hope of civilian disarmers everywhere; total gun registration. To her credit, she doesn’t spout the usual plaints like, “We register cars, why not guns?” No she has actually come up with a different, even more specious line of reasoning:
Norton … noted that if she sells her kayak to someone, she has to register who she gave it to and questions why the same laws don’t always apply in the case of firearms.
First of all, Minnesota’s Department of Natural Resources doesn’t give a hoot in Niflheim about who owns what watercraft. They just want their filthy lucre — $8.50 permit issuance fee plus $5.00 invasive species surcharge plus registration; Hey, those fees add up.
Second, I actually strongly support the idea of licensing and registering guns just like cars (as I outline here), but perhaps not for the same reasons as Rep. Norton. Although the article is woefully short of details, aside from mentioning that she “is still working on crafting the bill” it’s obvious that she believes that registration will somehow magically keep criminals from getting guns. Or something.
It would be so nice if those who would craft the laws under which we all have to live actually had some inkling of the things they try to legislate (“shoulder thing that goes up” anyone?). Because ever since the 8-1 Supreme Court ruling in U.S. v. Haynes — a ruling handed down almost fifty years ago — criminals have not been required to register their guns since that would violate their Fifth Amendment protection against self-incrimination.
The good thing about Norton’s quixotic quest: it jus may improve our chances of getting a strongly pro-2A legislator in her seat in 2016. Thanks, Kim.