Friday, December 14, 2012


The Supreme Court has ruled gun ownership is an individual right under the Second Amendment. That’s settled law and will not be debated.

Here are a few things we can do that might keep some guns out of the hands of those we have already agreed can’t have them, and make those who own them a little more responsible:

Enforce the three-day waiting period for background checks on all gun sales. The purpose of the check is to ensure those who should to have weapons don’t get them, and to provide a cooling off period for those who might be having violent impulses. It’s an imperfect system, but the best we have; some money for staff and database support might help. The gun show exemption defeats the purpose, and the only reason for it is convenience. The Second Amendment does not specify a level of convenience. Check everyone.

Register all firearms. The NRA doesn’t want to hear this, as it will allegedly make it too easy for the government to come for your guns if it wants to. Goddamn right. If anyone who owns a gun later commits any action that would bar him from buying another, round up the ones he has.

More accountability for gun owners. It’s your right to own a gun. With rights come responsibilities. If your gun is ever used in the commission of a crime, you own a piece of that, too. If your gun is stolen, report it right now. If you lend it out, be aware you’re lending more than the gun. You know where your car is and would report its theft in a heartbeat. Being able to account for your most dangerous possession is not asking too much.

No fully automatic weapon sales to individuals. I’m not even going to bother to explain this one. Modifying a semi-automatic weapon to full auto will cost you some prison time and a bar to owning a gun in the future.

No outsized clips or magazines. When this was last raised, the argument against was small magazines were an inconvenience to target shooter, as they have to stop to reload too often. To that I say, fuck you. Your convenience does not justify leaving the door open for someone else to shoot large numbers of people.

I write this without knowing the details of today’s Connecticut shooting, except that twenty children are dead. How he pulled it off doesn’t matter. What I mentioned here won’t solve the problem, but it’s worth a try as a start. I’ve never been against gun ownership per se, but I can’t let this kind of thing go on and accept it as the cost of living in this country any longer.


Mark, the Sports Correspondent said...

I post here because my younger brother was shot by a 12 year old in 1978 (still alive thank God). People think I should be in favor of gun control but I am not BECAUSE, as in the case of my brother, those who will want to possess a gun will find a way to do so. Nowhere in this country is a 12 year old allowed to own a gun.

I agree with Dana's comment but feel more adamant about sentencing after a gun is used in the commission of a crime. Just possessing a gun legally will not stop a crime from being committed. A gun is not a shield. If you are going to conceal and carry, and you pull out your gun, you better be willing to use it and more importantly, face the legal consequences of your actions.

I believe if you pull a gun to commit a crime, you automatically get 10 years added to your sentence with no time off for good behavior and the sentences MUST be served consecutively. If you pull the trigger, 25 years. If you kill someone, life.

I know harsh, but we need to take the ability away from judges and lawyers to plea bargain and alter the law to their personal whims.

Dana King said...

First, let me say I'm glad your brother i all right. I'm also happy to see you (finally) agree on something. Your brother's example, however, shows the flaw in your argument.

I doubt the 12-year-old who shot your brother bought the gun illegally, or stole. I'd say it's a good bet he took a gun some asshole left lying around without proper supervision. Whoever the gun belongs to--relative, friend, or neighbor--needs to do at least a little jail time himself, have all his guns taken away, and may never own a firearm again.

Adding to the responsibility and cutting down the number of guns available will go a long way toward increasing everyone's safety.