As our friends in the Civilian Disarmament Industrial Complex never tire of telling us, all we need to do to save lives in this country and reduce “gun violence” is to enact more “common-sense” “gun safety” laws. We have to get “military grade” weapons off of our streets because no one needs to own “weapons of war.”
Once we finally accomplish that, we’ll all live in the safe, secure gun-controlled nirvana we’ve been dreaming of.
Except real world examples of states and nations that have done just that don’t really support the gun-grabbers’ utopian hypothesis. Take the UK, for example.
You’d think an island nation with ultra-strict gun laws would be an ideal laboratory for the effectiveness of virtual firearms prohibition. Here’s the latest from The Guardian, Police struggle to stop flood of firearms into UK:
Chief constable Andy Cooke, the national police lead for serious and organised crime, said law enforcement had seen an increased supply of guns over the past year, and feared that it would continue in 2019. …
Another senior law enforcement official said that “new and clean” weapons were now being used in the majority of shootings, as opposed to guns once being so difficult to obtain that they would be “rented out” to be used in multiple crimes.
No matter how hard politicians try, they can’t repeal the laws of supply and demand. Where there’s a demand for firearms, there will always be people who will supply them, whether that’s through home-made weapons or, as seems to be increasingly the case, by smuggling them into the country.
Cooke said more are coming in from eastern Europe and the western Balkans and also component pieces are being smuggled in via the fast parcel system, hidden among a growth in packages because of the explosion of internet shopping.
Guns are being bought on the dark web and the UK is also seeing weapons designed for sports shooting being smuggled in, as well as blank firing weapons bought for just £100 being converted in the UK. Criminals have also obtained high end automatic weapons such as an AK47.
We’ve had our own shining examples of the failure of gun control right here in the colonies as well. Take, for example, Bill Clinton’s 1994 “assault weapons” ban.
…[E]ven gun control advocates acknowledge a larger truth: The law that barred the sale of assault weapons from 1994 to 2004 made little difference.
It turns out that big, scary military rifles don’t kill the vast majority of the 11,000 Americans murdered with guns each year. Little handguns do.
It was nothing more than political theater that allowed Clinton and the Democrats to say they’d done something about “gun violence.”
Democrats decided to push for a ban of what seemed like the most dangerous guns in America: assault weapons, which were presented by the media as the gun of choice for drug dealers and criminals, and which many in law enforcement wanted to get off the streets.
This politically defined category of guns — a selection of rifles, shotguns and handguns with “military-style” features — only figured in about 2 percent of gun crimes nationwide before the ban.
Nothing has changed to this day. Long guns represent a tiny fraction of firearms used in crimes in this country. But the few times they are used have been more sensational and newsworthy involving suburban white movie-goers or school children. The weekly body counts in Chicago, Baltimore, and Detroit never seem to draw as much attention.
So UK-style prohibition doesn’t work and the “assault weapons” ban was a failure. How about ending private gun sales and requiring universal background checks? Surely that would be a step in the right direction.
A study of firearm homicide and suicide rates in the 10 years after California simultaneously mandated comprehensive background checks for nearly all firearm sales and a prohibition on gun purchase and possession for persons convicted of most violent misdemeanor crimes found no change in the rates of either cause of death from firearms through 2000.
As the Foundation for Economic Education notes . . .
Perhaps unsurprisingly, the findings—which run counter to the conventional wisdom that gun control saves lives—have received almost no media attention.
Count us among the un-surprised. Here’s more recent news about guns in the US that somehow wasn’t prominently featured by NBC, CNN or the AP: crime and murder rates, even in most of America’s largest cities, are declining in 2018.
A new report from the Brennan Center for Justice shows the murder rate fell by almost 6 percent between 2017 and 2018 in the 30 largest U.S. cities. Violent crime overall dropped by about 2.7 percent in cities where data was available, while the overall crime rate declined 1.8 percent.
“This is a trend starting in the early ‘90s, where crime has been plummeting,” said Inimai Chettiar, director of the Brennan Center’s Justice Program. “We are at all-time lows for crime. We’re not in the middle of a crime wave.”
We’ll repeat that one more time for Michael Bloomberg, Shannon Watts, Ladd Everitt, and David Hogg: “We’re not in the middle of a crime wave.”
Once final numbers are calculated by the FBI next year, the overall crime rate across the country is likely to have fallen to the lowest level since 1990, the Brennan Center estimated.
Over the last quarter century, as the number civilian owned guns in the US has increased by more than 50%, the violent crime rate has plummeted to historic lows and continues to drop.
Do you know what else happened during that same time period? Gun laws were loosened across the country allowing for millions more Americans to own and carry firearms for self-defense. Correlation does not equal causation and all that, but you draw your own conclusions about the relationship there.
So please, tell us again how gun violence is a pressing public health issue in the US that requires immediate, drastic restrictions on civilian firearm ownership and Second Amendment freedoms. And while you’re at it, explain how gun control laws now being proposed — “assault weapons” bans, universal background checks, “red flag” laws — will be any more effective than all the other laws that have already been tried and failed, both here and in other countries.