As a former prosecutor in Washington, D.C., who enforced firearms and ammunition cases while a severe local gun ban was still in effect, I am skeptical of the benefits that many imagine will result from additional gun-control efforts. I dislike guns, but I believe that a nationwide firearms crackdown would place an undue burden on law enforcement and endanger civil liberties while potentially increasing crime.As I've already shown by citing the international firearms homicide statistics, guns are quite clearly not the problem. It is absolutely impossible to reasonably claim, with a straight face, that the Obama administration's push for gun control has anything whatsoever to do with reducing gun deaths in particular or the violence in general.
The D.C. gun ban, enacted in 1976, prohibited anyone other than law-enforcement officers from carrying a firearm in the city. Residents were even barred from keeping guns in their homes for self-defense.
Some in Washington who owned firearms before the ban were allowed to keep them as long as the weapons were disassembled or trigger-locked at all times. According to the law, trigger locks could not be removed for self-defense even if the owner was being robbed at gunpoint. The only way anyone could legally possess a firearm in the District without a trigger lock was to obtain written permission from the D.C. police. The granting of such permission was rare.
The gun ban had an unintended effect: It emboldened criminals because they knew that law-abiding District residents were unarmed and powerless to defend themselves. Violent crime increased after the law was enacted, with homicides rising to 369 in 1988, from 188 in 1976 when the ban started. By 1993, annual homicides had reached 454.
This is obvious because regardless of whether one looks at Western Europe, Latin America, Australia, the UK, or US cities such as Chicago and Washington DC, gun bans have reliably led to more violence, and often, more firearms homicide. The logic is not compelling, it is conclusive and inescapable.
And it leads one to the next question. Since reducing the rate of gun deaths and criminal violence is obviously not the objective of pursuing increased restrictions on firearms and further infringing upon the Second Amendment rights of the American people, what is the real objective?
Now, I know what I believe it to be. But I'm interested to hear the claims, and the supporting arguments for those claims, from those who believe it to be anything but the eventual disarmament of the American people.
Labels: gun control