Reader Ian W. writes:
I’ve been going back and forth with a gun control advocate on Facebook in the aftermath of the Umpqua Community College shooting. She wants us to #DoSomething, I ask what exactly more gun control will accomplish. She calls for universal background checks, a ban on assault weapons, and online ammo purchase limits. I point out the pointlessness of such things. I post cited facts, she ignores me. So goes the usual go-nowhere pro-gun/anti-gun “discussion.” But to prove that, contrary the chronic anti claim, gun owners aren’t unwilling to make compromises (just opposed to pointless and/or redundant laws and “compromise” that is nothing of the sort) I posted the following . . .
A proposal for a reasonable compromise on gun control
Pro-2A agrees to universal background checks with a statutory maximum on the fee for the check (say, $5).
Pro-gun control agrees to national concealed carry reciprocity, removing the NFA restrictions on short barreled rifles/shotguns, AOWs, and suppressors, and repealing the Gun Free School Zone Act.
Both sides agree to better fund enforcement of existing firearms laws, especially with regard to straw purchasing and weapons trafficking.
Since both sides already agree that the NICS background check system is broken, let’s fix that. As the system is (among other things) overworked, instead of restricting all felons, limit the check to violent felony convictions, wanted fugitives, firearms traffickers, and the mentally ill who have been properly judged to be a threat to themselves or others and/or mentally incompetent. This will also reduce the workload on the states and help to get reporting to the NICS system accomplished in a timely manner. And it preserves the right to due process as well as the presumption of innocence until proven guilty.
Both sides agree that training with firearms and safe storage are important, so let’s work on that, too. Fund and expand the Civilian Marksmanship Program and subsidize the cost for safety and proficiency training. Provide subsidies and/or tax breaks toward buying gun safes, and promote and fund (rather than hindering) child safety programs like Eddie Eagle. Take advantage of gun owners’ enjoyment of shooting and the basic human nature to take advantage of a perceived deal to encourage training on an perpetual, ongoing basis (instead of one-time mandatory minimums).
Does that seem like a reasonable start?