There isn’t an American with a heart that isn’t sick over the Newtown, Connecticut, shootings of all those innocent children and teachers; and there shouldn’t be a gun owner in America that’s afraid of a national conversation about mass shootings and how to prevent them.
That conversation, however, must begin with everyone on the same page about guns. I scratch my head when I listen to people on television that call for more gun control because of their appalling lack of knowledge about guns.
They talk about AR-15 type semi-automatic rifles that are often used in these kinds of shootings as “weapons of war.” But the kinds of guns our Founding Fathers had in mind when they wrote the Constitution where allowing Americans to bear the same kinds of rifles soldiers in their day carried to war. They wanted an armed citizenry to own and use weapons capable of defending themselves from people with evil intent that use weapons of war.
Certainly there must be reasonable limits on what an American citizen can own. Machine guns already are outlawed and where they are permitted they are heavily taxed. Tanks, anti-tank weapons and the like have no useful purpose except in war.
Hand gun and rifle technology, however, has advanced a great deal since then. Indeed it has advanced a great deal in the past few decades. When gun control advocates talk about banning handguns that can shoot five rounds a second, they are describing just about every semi-automatic pistol and rifle on the market today.
The speed at which any semi-automatic pistol or rifle fires, is the speed at which the shooter pulls the trigger. Most full size semi-automatic pistols in use by the police, the FBI, and the military today and that are available to anyone who passes a background check are semi-automatic pistols with 12 and 14 round magazines. It only takes three or four seconds to empty the magazine; and as competitive shooters have testified before Congress, with a little practice, any shooter can switch out magazines and hardly miss a beat.
Nevertheless, just like pro-abortion advocates who want no restrictions on abortion whatsoever, gun owners know that once those people, like the Mayor of New York City who tell us how big a drink we can order at a restaurant, begin telling us what kinds of weapons we can buy, we’re on our way back to 18th century muzzle loaders.
Which takes the lives of more children every year in America, abortion or mass shootings?
Be that as it is, preventing mass shootings like the one at Sandy Hook Elementary School, is about a lot more than what kind of gun the shooter used. That national conversation has to be about our culture of violent movies and video games, about how we treat the mentally ill, about how we secure our schools, and about how we defend ourselves against mass murders.
Let’s have that national conversation. The kind of America our children will inherit is bad enough without making it a free-fire zone for elementary school students.
Filed under: Politics, Connecticut, Gun Control, Mayor of New York City, Newtown, Newtown Connecticut, Semi-automatic pistol, United States