The editorial board of cincinnati.com would have you believe that gun rights should be curtailed in the interest of public safety — as if Americans’ natural, civil and Constitutionally protected right to keep and bear arms depends on considerations of public safety. It does not. But when you think that way, when you favor gun control, that’s the way you roll. Like this . . .
The wrongheaded basic philosophy behind this bill is two-fold: Criminals don’t follow laws, so gun-free zones don’t work, and more guns on campuses, in day care centers and elsewhere means more safety, by arming civilians and effectively deputizing them to fight crime.
The first claim is easily dismissed: What other law do we eliminate just because someone may not follow it? Gun-free zones keep guns out of, for example, on-campus disputes between otherwise law-abiding individuals who lose their cool. Gun-free zones keep accidental shootings away from large groups of people. Gun-free zones ensure that when a potential shooter carries a gun on campus, he or she can be identified as a lawbreaker more quickly – an invaluable guide for potential victims and law enforcement alike.
Let’s see . . .
We eliminated the law against the highly dangerous substance known as alcohol because people weren’t following it. In five years of daily gun blogging, I haven’t encountered a single example of an “otherwise law-abiding individual” — by which I think they mean sane — losing their cool on campus, whipping out their gun and shooting someone. I can think of one — count it one — example of a non-injurious negligent discharge by someone in a school. And I can think of no examples of a school shooter stopped by someone who noticed he had a gun (before the shooting).
Again, this isn’t relevant. But if we’re playing this game . . .
As to the second claim: No, more guns don’t equal more safety. Carrying a firearm doesn’t make a person a police-caliber responder equipped with close-quarters combat training. Additionally, an armed “good guy” could easily be mistaken for a shooter by police and terrified students during an attack, leading to even more unnecessary bloodshed.
“Police-caliber responder”with “close-quarters combat training,” eh? I don’t suppose cincinnati.com’s editors had a look at the New York Police Department’s “hit rate.” Again, there are no examples of a civilian shot by police responding to a school shooting. And, as we’ve said here many times, so what? Does the paper prefer to eliminate the possibility of a counter-attack to the existence of a crowd of defenseless victims? Yup.
Again, this isn’t relevant. To their credit — by which I mean their eternal shame — the paper proposes the following “solutions” to school shootings:
Consider universal background checks, so felons and the severely mentally ill can’t buy weapons, at gun shows or anywhere else. Consider requiring those background checks to occur before guns are sold. Crack down on easy ways shooters get illegal guns, through straw-man purchases and gun-store thefts. Consider allowing federally funded, publicly available research into gun crimes so law enforcement can make decisions based on facts, not fiction – particularly propaganda from either side of the debate.
The paper believes this pathetic plank of civilian disarmament proposals will stop criminals, crazies and terrorists from getting guns by cracking down on legal purchases. And here’s the really odious bit: the editorial is titled Editorial: Gun rights? Yes. Gun control? Yes. I don’t think the word “rights” means what cinicnnati.com wants it to mean. Never did. And never will.