Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Gun Control - A Failure In Preventing Crime

2nd amendment of the US Constitution:

"A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed."

Not too long ago (July 20 to be exact), a fellow named Rod Black had his Op-Ed, entitled "Laws Restricting Guns Misfire" printed in the Hartford Courant. Mr. Black is one 26 year old commercial insurance account executive who knows what he's talking about.

He asserted that states with stricter gun control laws have higher crime rates.
Read it for yourself:
Though Connecticut has some of the more restrictive gun control laws in the country, residents of many cities throughout the state would argue that the regulations are doing nothing to curb the violence. Why? Because Connecticut lawmakers are only attacking "supply" and doing nothing about "demand." The recent passage of the "straw-buyer" bill, which requires the reporting of all lost and stolen firearms to the police, was just the latest manifestation of the General Assembly getting it wrong.

If you look at New England, there is a trend. Connecticut, Massachusetts and Rhode Island are governed by restrictive gun laws. Conversely, law-abiding residents in Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont have limited roadblocks to legally procuring a firearm. The gun control advocate would believe that violence in the latter states would far exceed those in the former states.

In 2004, the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence gave Connecticut, Massachusetts and Rhode Island a B or better for their efforts to inhibit gun violence (Connecticut and Massachusetts got an A-), while Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont all received a D-.

Statistics from 2005, however, tell a much different story. According to the U.S. Department of Justice, the murder rates in Portland, Maine, and Manchester, N.H., were 4.7 and 3.6 respectively per 100,000 residents - low when compared to the murder rates in Bridgeport, Hartford, New Haven, Boston, Springfield and Providence, which were more than twice their northern neighbors' and higher than the national average of 6.9 per 100,000 during the same time period.

Other violent crimes (aggravated assault, armed robbery, rape) were lower in the latter states as well. Additionally, Vermont had eight instances of homicide in the entire state and only two of those were attributed to firearms. Furthermore, Nashua, N.H., is consistently ranked as one of the best cities in the U.S. in which to live due to its low crime rate and quality of life.

What do these statistics tell us? Restrictive and needless legislation does nothing to prevent violence. Erecting unnecessary roadblocks (i.e. gun control) to legal gun ownership only hurts, and at times dissuades, the law-abiding citizen. More importantly such laws do nothing to impede the criminal, because criminals do not adhere to the law. This is why lawmakers would better serve and protect those of us in Connecticut if they sought to address and remedy the destructive culture in our cities and elsewhere. Destroy this mindset as opposed to devising harmful legislation that does nothing to solve the true ills that plague certain communities, which are the real reasons why violence is occurring in the first place.

Hold Bridgeport Mayor John Fabrizi, Hartford Mayor Eddie Perez, New Haven Mayor John DeStefano and the General Assembly responsible for not doing enough to combat the illegal frame of mind in Connecticut's cities, not the lifeless piece of polymer and steel. After all, a firearm is merely an inanimate object that can no more cause harm to an individual than these words. A Ford does not become a dangerous tool of death until a person who consumed an inordinate amount of alcohol or anyone else with an adverse mental state gets behind its wheel. How is a Glock any different than a Ford Focus? The wrong mindset can result in disastrous consequences, no matter what the device.

If there is one thing that we can learn from the Brady Campaign, it is that unsound and ill-conceived gun control frequently makes a state less safe and does not prevent violence. At best, crime rates stay at the status quo, at worst (and more often than not), there is a significant increase in both crime and the number of victims. Just ask the residents of Hartford and New Haven, as well as Massachusetts. Moreover, ask them how well gun control is protecting them. As long as there is a demand, there is always going to be a supply, no matter how many restrictive laws are enacted.
Hmm.. I am also waiting to see if they will enact knife laws and remove the knives from our homes, or require us to register knives or other sharp objects ... we may be doomed to a life of eating nothing more than strained baby food.

I was actually shocked that the Hartford Courant, even printed this "pro gun rights" op-ed.

As far as I am concerned 2nd amendment rights are incredibly vital, and our founders knew that. The 2nd amendment has little to do with deer or duck hunting. An unarmed citizenry is nothing more than sitting ducks for criminals, and more importantly those who wish to subjugate said citizenry. One only has to look at what happened during Hurricane Katrina to understand what can happen (The government took registered guns from law abiding citizens). People were left defenseless against looters and criminals as their private property was seized by agents.

And excuse me, but last I checked, criminals do not pay much attention to the laws as it is. That's what makes them criminals! Perhaps we ought to be enforcing the laws we already have on the books. Rest assured, if we had laws that outlawed guns all together, criminals would still use guns or they would find other means to commit crimes and murders.

In the CNN Democratic You Tube debate there was a guy who asked the candidates about gun control - Joe Biden then called this AR15 owner "mentally ill" with words to the effect of "If that man thinks that weapon is his baby, he shouldn't be allowed to own it. He's mentally ill". Actually I think Joe Biden is mentally ill, but that's just my opinion.

Read more at Gunsafe.
Here is also a great article about the 2nd amendment.

"The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government." (Thomas Jefferson Papers p. 334, 1950)