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A Modest Gun-Safety Proposal
Reason Magazine ^ | May 12, 2013 | Sheldon Richman

Posted on 05/12/2013 10:45:59 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet

The problem with the advocates of “gun-safety” laws is that they don’t think big enough. They favor expanded background checks, greater monitoring of those stigmatized as “mentally ill,” and a ban on the manufacture of scary-looking semiautomatic rifles and high-capacity magazines. But we know these measures would not have prevented the horrible shootings that have occurred in recent years.

The 1999 Columbine massacre took place while bans on “assault weapons” and high-cap magazines were in place. The killer at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., Adam Lanza, wouldn’t haven’t been stopped by a background check because he used his mother’s lawfully purchased guns. The shooter at the Aurora, Colo., movie theater last year, James Eagan Holmes, had no criminal record and bought his weapons legally. He reportedly had contact with so-called “mental-health professionals,” and some acquaintances thought he was weird, but this hardly sounds like grounds to take his guns away or detain him as likely to commit a massacre. Had he been unable to buy guns legally, he would have obtained them in the black market, which people have been doing since guns were invented. Same with Jared Lee Loughner, the Tucson shooter who killed six people and wounded, among others, then-Rep. Gabrielle Giffords.

So, what are we to do? It’s not enough to make gun buyers undergo background checks. A would-be killer’s background may be spotless, and those whose backgrounds aren’t will find other ways to get firearms, including theft. Banning the manufacture of certain firearms and magazines won’t work either, because millions of them already exist, and no one proposes confiscation — if for no other reason than that it would be a mission impossible.

Here’s where I think the “gun-safety” crowd — they seem not to like the term “gun control” anymore — need to think bigger. Enough with the roundabout measures. Let’s get to the heart of the problem: the intention to commit crimes with a gun.

Congress should pass a law forthwith requiring every gun buyer to declare whether or not he intends to commit a crime with the gun. If a would-be buyer says yes, he would be denied a gun and his declaration should be publicized far and wide so that no one else will sell him a gun. The government could even set up a website with the names of all would-be buyers who declared their intention to commit a crime with a gun. This would ensure that even black-market dealers would refuse to sell guns to these people. Knowledge is power. And if a gun dealer sells a gun to a self-declared criminal, he would be charged as an accessory. That would deter even black-market dealers.

But what if a would-be buyer lies about his intentions? Let’s have stiff penalties for lying on the declaration form. I’m sure that anyone planning to commit murder or armed robbery would be stopped by the threat of jail time for lying about that intention.

This, of course, doesn’t address the full problem. What about the Adam Lanzas who take their parents’ guns? Since they don’t present themselves to a gun seller, how would they be required to declare their intentions?

Here’s the solution: All gun owners should be required to keep their guns under lock and key at the local police station. Whenever they, or members of their families, want to use a gun — say, in self-defense against an armed home invader — they would have to sign a declaration of intent. Guns would be issued only to those who declared they have no criminal designs.

This seems a far more effective way to keep guns out of the wrong hands than mere background checks and weapons bans. Since that’s what the “gun-safety” lobby says it wants, let’s see if they go for this modest proposal. It would target only the criminally minded, not the law-abiding among us, so the lobby should have no problem with these measures. Gun-safety advocates certainly cannot claim these requirements would not work, because then they would have to admit that the proposals they favor also would not work.

If we can’t count on gun buyers to declare honestly if they have criminal intentions, how can we count on them not to buy guns in background-check-free zones?


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Editorial; Government; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: banglist; guncontrol; satire; secondamendment
Full title:
A Modest Gun-Safety Proposal: Congress should pass a law forthwith requiring every gun buyer to declare whether or not he intends to commit a crime with the gun.
1 posted on 05/12/2013 10:45:59 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

What kind of crap is this???


2 posted on 05/12/2013 10:49:27 PM PDT by Up Yours Marxists
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Anytime you see the word "modest" employed, you can be certain the author intends to shove 10 lbs of crap down your throat and insist that you consume it with a smile. Red flags and sirens should go off when you see that word. Especially when it comes to infringing on your God given rights.
3 posted on 05/12/2013 10:50:23 PM PDT by Myrddin
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To: Up Yours Marxists

I believe it’s called satire.


4 posted on 05/12/2013 10:51:57 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet (I'll raise $2million for Sarah Palin's next run. What'll you do?)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

“Congress should pass a law forthwith requiring every gun buyer to declare whether or not he intends to commit a crime with the gun.” The absolute epitome of leftist airhead Magic Thinking! ... And the scary thing is these fools vote and believe their magic!


5 posted on 05/12/2013 10:52:54 PM PDT by MHGinTN (Being deceived can be cured.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Right over their heads.


6 posted on 05/12/2013 10:53:01 PM PDT by Jeff Chandler (People are idiots.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Oh, OK. I thought the guy was actually serious. I’ve actually spoken with some commie goons and they held this argument.

Thanks for clarifying.


7 posted on 05/12/2013 10:53:33 PM PDT by Up Yours Marxists
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Satire, yes. Reality in the democrip voter minds, of course, that’s why it’s such great satire.


8 posted on 05/12/2013 10:54:10 PM PDT by MHGinTN (Being deceived can be cured.)
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To: Up Yours Marxists; Myrddin; MHGinTN

A Modest Proposal
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Modest_Proposal


9 posted on 05/12/2013 10:54:49 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet (I'll raise $2million for Sarah Palin's next run. What'll you do?)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

This recent satire is scaring me as of late. Because of this damned red-eyed regime we have installed at the helm, it’s difficult to weed out their radical bullsnot from Laurel and Hardy folly.

Geez, I must be gettin’ really old. Not as sharp as I used to be in my 60’s.


10 posted on 05/12/2013 11:02:07 PM PDT by Up Yours Marxists
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Jonathan Swift

Irish babies, yum!


11 posted on 05/12/2013 11:14:26 PM PDT by Psiman (PS I am not a crackpot)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Swift was a considerably better writer.

You had better be entirely confident of your skill before inviting such a comparison.


12 posted on 05/12/2013 11:17:03 PM PDT by Sherman Logan
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

In Hong Kong if you own a weapon you do have to keep it at the police station. You may only shot it in a firing rang and have to account for every spent cartridge.


13 posted on 05/12/2013 11:18:35 PM PDT by Fai Mao (Genius at Large)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

This modest proposal smacks of the UK and the restrictions placed on legitimate firearms license holders. “Modest” proposal it is not because it equates legal firearms owners as criminals (or worse).


14 posted on 05/12/2013 11:31:55 PM PDT by MasterGunner01
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To: Up Yours Marxists

“Here’s the solution: All gun owners should be required to keep their guns under lock and key at the local police station. “

BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA


15 posted on 05/12/2013 11:41:34 PM PDT by max americana (fired liberals in our company after the election, & laughed while they cried (true story))
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Congress should pass a law forthwith requiring every gun buyer to declare whether or not he intends to commit a crime with the gun. If a would-be buyer says yes, he would be denied a gun...

Wait a minute, that's not fair. If a fellow is honest enough to state that he intends to commit a crime with the gun, shouldn't the government be reinforcing that sort of honesty? I mean, you get the behavior you reward, right? So a hearty, "sure, I mean to knock off the corner liquor store" ought to be rewarded with, oh, I don't know, a box of ammo or a high-capacity ammo clip magazine thingy. Decent civic behavior is important, and if we're going to raise a generation of honest citizens I don't see the point in penalizing anyone for telling the truth.

16 posted on 05/12/2013 11:49:13 PM PDT by Billthedrill
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To: 2ndDivisionVet; All

Yes. The “modest” in the title is a literary reference to Jonathan Swift, I believe.

Jonathan Swift is perhaps the most famous satirist.


17 posted on 05/13/2013 12:56:08 AM PDT by marktwain (The MSM must die for the Republic to live. Long live the new media!)
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To: Myrddin

I take it you’ve never heard of Jonathan Swift’s “Modest Proposal” ... I believe that piece of classic satire was the model for at least the title — if not the spirit — of this article.


18 posted on 05/13/2013 5:27:58 AM PDT by IronJack (=)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

A lame attempt at satire, since the gun grabbers would be thrilled by this proposal.


19 posted on 05/13/2013 5:36:09 AM PDT by Sloth (Rather than a lesser Evil, I voted for Goode.)
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To: IronJack

Swift’s “A Modest Proposal” about the cannibalizing of Irish infants horrified the English public and called attention to the awful conditions in Ireland.

Satire is a razor edged weapon.


20 posted on 05/13/2013 5:38:00 AM PDT by elcid1970 ("The Second Amendment is more important than Islam.")
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

CHICAGO

Obama’s hometown.

Three people have been killed and at least 11 wounded in acts of violence throughout the city since Friday, police said.

http://www.wlsam.com/common/page.php?feed=11&pt=3+dead%2C+11+wounded+in+weekend+violence&id=37793&is_corp=0


21 posted on 05/13/2013 6:54:43 AM PDT by KeyLargo
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To: Myrddin; Up Yours Marxists

Please look up “A Modest Proposal” by Jonathon Swift.

Then put on your thinking cap, note the use of the words “modest” and “proposal” in the article you’re responding to, and realize you have been punked.


22 posted on 05/13/2013 9:52:43 AM PDT by Peet (Come back with a warrant.)
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To: MHGinTN

isn’t this how they have private arms in germany today?

this crackpot idea is german/european.


23 posted on 05/13/2013 10:39:06 AM PDT by longtermmemmory (VOTE! http://www.senate.gov and http://www.house.gov)
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