Blame the Guns

If you pay attention to the news, you know that, in the past week or so, Seattle has seen a series of apparently unrelated, random shootings. The victims have no commonality, nor do the circumstances. And, despite one of the incidents involving drive-by shooting (if I understood the report right; keep in mind I was in the middle of my workout while this story was airing), Seattle PD says they aren’t gang related. It’s just folks shooting other folks.

So who do the police blame for this?

Guns.

It seems that, in their opinion, there are just far too many guns in the city.

I blame this, partially, on the PD brass. Any time police leaders look to get egg on their faces—such as when citizens of their city begin lighting each other up for no apparent reason—they have to find blame somewhere. In their minds, that calms the general public, makes them (the police chiefs and pols) look as if they’re on top of things. It’s better than going in front of the cameras and admitting they don’t frickin’ know.

On top of that, the International Association of Chiefs of Police is famously anti-gun. If we’d just let their jackbooted officers run roughshod over us subjects, things would be a lot better off as far as they’re concerned.

Most cops on the street don’t share that view. But, like most military and paramilitary organizations—and most organizations, period—the only people allowed to talk to the media are those in the front office. And damned few of them. Officers on the street, the ones who’ve seen what an armed citizen can do to protect him/herself, aren’t allowed to talk to the media. All they can do is tell reporters to go see Media Relations. And Media Relations says only what the chiefs and assistant chiefs approve.

That means they’re going to blame the guns for this spree, not the perps. Blaming the criminals wouldn’t be politically correct, you know. It’s more proper, instead, to blame such things as high-capacity magazines, or the cosmetic appearance of a gun. There is no operational difference between the Ruger Mini-14 and the AR-15. Both are semiautomatic rifles that shoot the 5.56mm (.223) round. But the Mini-14 looks like a deer rifle, while the AR-15 is the ominous, infamous black rifle. I’m not going to argue the nuances and semantics about which is the better rifle. I’m using this as a common example. I could name a lot of others.

Point is, the cosmetic differences allow gun grabbers such as the Brady Campaign and pols like Charles Schumer to label the AR an assault rifle and claim that these are the only weapons—along with handguns of all stripes, of course—that they’re interested in regulating. One of their favorite ploys is to call them “machine guns,” as if the streets are full to brimming over with fully automatic weapons that are slaying both police and citizens left and right. Never mind that most AR’s and AK’s are semiautomatic, and even if they’re a variation that can rock n roll, they’re still not a “machine gun.” Machines guns are typically larger caliber and mounted on vehicles or bi/tripods, in fixed positions. Yes, there are the so-called machine pistols, such as the Uzi and the MAC 10.

But these aren’t the weapons being used in the Seattle shootings. The report I heard didn’t specify what weapons are being used.

I know it’s an old, maybe even used up saying, but guns don’t kill people. People kill people.

Want proof?

Fine. A challenge, then. Take the gun of your choice, load it, put it in the location of your choice and see how many people it shoots by itself. Of course, for this challenge to be legit, no one can actually touch the gun much less fire it.

Meantime, cars kill more people by accident each year than guns do on purpose, and I don’t hear anybody yelling for them to be regulated or banned. Yes, that’s an old argument too, and the counter to it that cars are licensed and taxed is a good one. But, see, if you look in the Constitution, cars aren’t mentioned. And when I say cars, I mean any form of private transportation.

Cars are licensed because, when they were first available, it was thought that they’d never be put to common use, that only the wealthy would use them. So why not impose licensing, a form of taxation, on them? Basically, it amounted to taxing the wealthy for showing off.

These days it’s justified, and rightly so, in my opinion, because cars use public roads to get around. We’ve got to pay for those roads somehow. Again, I’m not going to get into a discussion about whether or not our various governments are doing a good job of this or not.

I’ve often toyed with the idea of trying to start a campaign to ban cars. Look at all the kids they kill each year. But, that would make me a hypocrite, and I’m not going to be one. We’ve got enough of those in government and among the activists as it is. I’m not going to add to their numbers. Besides, I have to live with myself, and hypocrisy is one of the things I hate most in this world.

Guns aren’t the problem. Any criminal will tell you that gun laws don’t make a hell of a lot of difference to him, and there are literally tens of thousands, maybe hundreds of thousands, of gun laws in this nation. Outlaws don’t go to the local gun store to buy their hardware. They go to a darkened alley. Or a black market dealer. Or just break into a lawful gun owner’s house and steal what they need.

Instead of sitting around blaming guns, why don’t we go after the real cause? Why don’t we put an end to these two-year murder sentences and revolving door prisons? Stop busting so many people for a handful of pot and get them out of the way so we can keep the violent criminals separate from society—and if they want to kill each other inside, let ’em. That’s just less money we have to pay for their upkeep.

If somebody shoots me—assuming I live—I’m not going to go after their gun. I’m going to go after them.

Stop blaming the guns. Put the responsibility where it belongs and do something about that.

Later,

Gil

3 Comments

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3 responses to “Blame the Guns

  1. As you know, I’m with you on this. There are plenty of legitimate uses for guns and plenty of responsible ways to own and to carry them. The solution to the problem of gun violence is the one that we’ve stopped trying: Hold people responsible for their own bad acts. Since I’ve spent most of my working life in schools, I harp on that subject a lot, but I’ve seen far too many cases of coddling students who do wrong. That goes for all levels from primary through college. The same is true in the rest of society.

    Keep your martinis and your powder dry.

  2. rgayer55

    When one of my guns misbehaves I make it stand in the corner for two or three days without any human contact. After that, I take it to the range and run 30 or 40 rounds through the chamber. A gun needs strong discipline as well as appreciation and respect.

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