Before we allow the government to start confiscating firearms, as Ed Schultz has stupidly suggested, and banning anything with a trigger and a firing pin, as many on the loony Left gleefully insists, I think we ought to take a serious look at the actual effectiveness of what is being proposed. Doing something in response to a tragedy that has already happened most often only compounds the tragedy. And doing violence to an integral part of the Constitution’s Bill of Rights is itself a dangerous precedent, no matter what the rationale.
Connecticut has strong gun laws that help combat the illegal gun market, prevent the sale of most guns without background checks and reduce risks to children, according to the Brady Campaign. In the organization’s 2009 state scorecards released for all 50 states, Connecticut earned 53 points out of a total of 100 and has the nation’s fourth strongest gun laws.
And according to Ron Pinciaro, President of CT Against Gun Violence,
Connecticut has done more than most states to combat illegal guns and has worked to keep guns out of the hands of dangerous people. In fact, Connecticut has a one-of-a-kind law that allows a judge to remove guns from people who have been determined to be a threat to themselves or others.
Finally, no state, including #1 rated California, received a higher rating for “keeping guns out of public places” such as schools. Which is why Adam Lanza could enter that school and start killing children with cold, undisturbed, impunity.
The actual gun(s) used, there’s been some question about this, were legally purchased and properly registered under Connecticut’s strict gun control laws. The gun(s)s were also stolen by Mr. Lanza and used to shoot and kill his own mother, before he went on his killing spree at the school – a school covered by Connecticut’s strict “gun free” law. And although California’s creaking Senator Di-Fi was quick to point to the “high capacity clips” in her PBS interview last evening, the shooter could have visited the very same tragic horror on the school and the children with .22 caliber revolver since there was no one at the “gun free” school armed and able to stop him. It would have taken him a bit longer to kill the same number of children, but the result would have been just as horrific.
Rather than using the horror of Newtown as an excuse for an unconstitutional prohibition of firearms, what we should contemplate instead is what actions could actually have worked to prevent this tragedy. Is there a law, beyond Connecticut’s already stringent gun control ordinances, that would have prevented Lanza from killing? The answer is, sadly, not really. Aside from jailing Adam Lanza, with no real proof, for what he may have been contemplating, there’s not much the state or the nation could have done to prevent the slaughter.
Those who would not allow this tragedy – this good crisis – to go to waste, should first demonstrate, conclusively, that what they propose in response will not only be constitutional but also effective. So far, they have not done so.
There is evil in the world. There always has been. It is folly to think we can protect ourselves, and our children, from it. As Ben Stein has written,
In this world, a killer devil can kill his mother and steal her guns to kill six year olds. That’s what some humans are, and I am not sure what laws will stop them.