The left has grown fond of asking why Americans need more than 10 bullets in a magazine, or why we need the particular guns they call "assault weapons." But they don't ask themselves the inverse of that question: Do mass shooters "need" high capacity magazines, or rifles with certain cosmetic styling, in order to commit their crimes?All standard right-wing objections to the present gun control proposals. If one's objectives* are to save children's lives,** perhaps the focus shouldn't be on black, scary-looking rifles and/or high-capacity magazines,*** but rather on knives, blunt weapons, fists, ca r accidents,swimming pools, handguns, and abortion clinics. But what got my attention with Mr. Gingrich's autograph was the question he raised in the last sentence in the quote above: that what afflicts LA or Chicago isn't the inanimate objects that evildoers use to kill. So what then, is it?
Of course not. The deadliest mass shooter in U.S. history, who killed 32 people at Virginia Tech in 2007, used two handguns and a backpack full of 10 round magazines. One of the Columbine shooters carried 13 10 round magazines with him.
We are correct to fear incrementalism when the burden of proof in the debate shifts from legislators convincing the people that a law can accomplish its proper aim, to the people having to persuade legislators that they should be permitted to keep certain weapons. Feeling the need to "do something" after a tragedy like the one that occurred at Sandy Hook is certainly understandable. But we shouldn't pass laws that punish law-abiding citizens, fail to deter or prevent crime, and do nothing to make us safer.
...[M]aybe the left will get around to asking why so many people are shooting each other in Chicago and Los Angeles, rather than obsessing over which particular guns they're using to do it.
Two possible causes come to mind. The first is demographics, a field which the HBD set has tilled quite well. Let's face facts, south-central LA and south Chicago are demographically very distinct from, say, Plano or Honolulu. The other is cultural, a variable that happens to closely track both race and class.
With culture, this is where I get to bang on the fatherlessness**** drum. If we're going to look at all factors that lead to increased rates of violence, we have to examine not only the availability of firearms (and the inverse correlation between gun control laws and gun homicides), but mental health laws which make it difficult to segregate dangerous persons from the general population. We should also evaluate the impact of violent movies and video games on the cultural fabric, as well as other markers of a culture that celebrates violence and cheapens human life...like, say, abortion/baby-cide. And then there is frivorce, cohabitation, man-not-included reproduction, and any other sociopathic behavior that terminates in a single mother family. The link between fatherlessness and violence, poverty, low academic achievement, and crime is well known; plain to see for those who bother to look. Really, those fellows who have intercourse with a woman who is not their wife, those gals who hop from carousel bed to carousel bed, or those men and women who opt for the frivorce, or who fail to marry in the first place, are dooming their children and the community at large to a much bleaker future.
I'd love it if we were to really have a serious national conversation about why so many people are shooting each other in Chicagoland or in LA. Wouldn't take much to notice that odds are the shooters and vics both come from fatherless homes. I'd love it even more if we were to collectively analyze the pros and cons of the single-mother family model, isolate all the myriad pathways such a family comes to be, and attack those causes, one by one.
Of course that would probably be too difficult an endeavor. To say nothing of negatively affecting too many wallets and threatening too many power structures. Never mind. Where were we? Oh, that's right. Taking scary looking boom sticks away from law-abiding citizens. Carry on.
* Who am I kidding? Saving kids' lives isn't the objective here.
** It's trendy on the left to conflate teenage gang-bangers with innocent children when citing firearms death statistics, but the two populations are not the same
*** Note: not "clips". Do you knuckleheads realize how stupid you sound when you use terms like this that unmask the fact you know next to nothing about what you are writing about?
**** By "fatherless", I am talking about situations where the bio father is not resident full time