A Brief History
Last night’s Democratic Presidential debate between Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders touched upon an inflammatory topic when the assertion was made by Clinton that we are experiencing “an epidemic” of mass shootings. Apparently, Presidential candidates and other politicians consistently ignore the trend of the past decade or so that murders and shootings are actually declining in the United States. The remarkable thing is that this decrease in violent crime is in the face of a massive increase in gun sales that began during the Bill Clinton administration when gun enthusiasts began stockpiling guns of all types, especially quasi-military arms such as semi-automatic only versions of AR-15’s and AK-47’s. This gun purchasing frenzy (and ammunition, too) was only accelerated with the election of Barack Obama, an ardent opponent of guns.
The argument that more guns equals more murders is therefore patently false and easily dis-proven by the facts. Additionally, as of 2013 ALL 50 STATES HAVE CONCEALED CARRY PERMIT LAWS, and despite hand wringing and dire warnings crime has actually decreased. Unfortunately, in those places with the strictest gun control laws murder has declined less or even increased.
Mrs. Clinton advocates for allowing gun manufacturers and gun dealers to be sued by the victims of gun crimes, a pathetic attempt to shift the blame from those actually responsible for the crimes, the criminals. Almost all of us feel sympathy for crime victims and their families, but a misguided effort to punish the wrong people because it is too hard to get any large settlement out of the criminals is not right. The proposed laws allowing the lawsuits against gun manufacturers and gun dealers for the misuse of guns out of their control is idiotic. Should knife manufacturers and department stores be liable for deranged criminals using knives in a crime? Seriously, the concept is almost too stupid to dignify with serious discussion, but when the next probable (at least highly possible) President of the US advocates for something it must be taken seriously.
Thomas Jefferson explained the intent of the Founding Fathers by stating his desire that the US Military never have more firepower than the public. He was referring to military weapons, not hunting and target shooting guns. Lexington and Concord were fought, starting the American Revolution, because the British (which was our government at the time) were moving to seize military type muskets, cannon, powder and shot from the private citizens. Jefferson and the others knew that when only the police have guns, you have a police state.
UPDATE, April 22, 2020: On April 18-19, 2020, a 51 year old resident of Nova Scotia, Canada, went on a shooting rampage that left 22 victims dead. The shooter, who had made up his SUV to look like an RCMP police vehicle and had donned an RCMP look-alike uniform prior to the shooting gunned down defenseless victims that apparently did not have or at least did not use firearms to defend themselves. When police finally caught up with the mass murderer, a shootout ensued and the murderer was killed. One of the victims fatally shot was an RCMP veteran of 23 years, the mother of 2 children. In a typical display of political buffoonery, Justin Trudeau, the Canadian Prime Minister, vowed to create new and stricter gun control measures, including an “assault weapons” ban. This before he and we even knew what kind of guns the shooter used and how those guns had been obtained.
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For more information, please see…
Ziegler, Daniel A. Hillary Clinton and Gun Control: Mother Takes Away Our Toys. CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, 2015.