September 30, 2007

A Few Common-Sense Gun Laws

The victim disarmament movement loves to offer their latest incremental infringement of the right to keep and bear arms as just a common-sense law on top of the forty thousand gun laws already on the books around the country. Their consistent premise is that denying law abiding citizen access to a few more guns at a time will keep guns out of the hands of evil-doers and "off the streets". There is of course no evidence that these additional restrictions will have any such effect.

Marc Richardson has taken a careful look at the data about where evil-doers actually obtain their guns. Because he starts with data rather than feelings, the legislation he proposes aimed specifically at keeping guns out of the hands of criminals truly deserve that much misused label of a few common sense gun laws.

In the data which he reviewed, roughly 40 percent of the guns used to commit a crime were supplied by a friend or family member who may well have owned it legally. It is probable that in many of these cases, the owner knew the person he was supplying it to was up to no good. Requiring me to go thru a licensed dealer when I transfer a rifle to my hunting buddy will not discourage such loans; making it a felony to supply a firearm used in a crime will.

Another 40 percent come from illegal sources, either street vendors or directly thru theft. A typical stupidity of the War on Some Drugs is that when a criminal is caught dealing in both guns and drugs, prosecutors focus on the drug charges. A revision of this philosophy would discourage such diversification. The gun banners have proposed legislation which would penalize people from whom guns are stolen. Marc's proposal is much more worthy of the label common sense. Simply impose a cumulative mandatory sentence for each gun stolen. This may even reduce the number of illegal DVD players on the street, by making burglary less profitable overall.

Posted by triticale at September 30, 2007 07:52 PM | TrackBack
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