A weekend opinion piece in the Washington Post underscores a hard reality gun prohibitionists stubbornly refuse to acknowledge.
As explained by author Rafael Mangual, a contributing editor to City Journal, “America’s gun violence is heavily concentrated in urban neighborhoods, where it is driven largely by perpetrators who, particularly because of criminal pasts, are already prohibited from possessing firearms by existing statutes.”
Mangual is hardly alone in revealing what Second Amendment advocates and grassroots activists have known for decades: Law-abiding gun owners don’t commit the violent crimes for which they are constantly berated and perennially penalized.
An article in the Baltimore Sun from January 2018 noted, “Of the 343 people killed in Baltimore in 2017, 88 percent were killed with a firearm, including 295 with a handgun and six with a shotgun or rifle, according to Baltimore Police data released Wednesday
“About 86 percent of the victims and 85 percent of the 118 suspects identified by police had prior criminal records,” the newspaper continued. “And about 46 percent of victims and 44 percent of suspects had previously been arrested for gun crimes, the data show.”
Long story short, all of the gun control laws now on the books or being proposed on Capitol Hill, or in Virginia, Washington, California or anywhere else are not going to produce the desired results, unless one result is to discourage the exercise of the constitutionally-enumerated fundamental right to keep and bear arms.
That’s certainly what gun owners who opposed the gun-and-ammunition tax recently adopted in Tacoma, Washington, a near carbon copy of the gun tax in Seattle adopted more than four years ago, now believe.
The Baltimore Sun story quoted T.J. Smith, a police spokesman, who noted of guns recovered at crime scenes or from suspects, the “overwhelming majority of them are going to be illegally possessed.”
Mangual primarily focused on Democrat billionaire Michael Bloomberg’s recent political apology for his “stop-and-frisk” program in New York City during his term as mayor. As Mangual explained it, “That tactic resulted in the removal from New York streets of thousands of illegal guns — guns that were unlawfully possessed because they were banned, because the carrier was unlicensed or because of the possessor’s status as a felon or juvenile.”
But those guns were not “illegal” in the pure sense. They were illegally possessed, and the people who had them were up to no good. Honest gun owners don’t want criminals to have firearms and to suggest otherwise—such as the claim by gun control groups that the National Rifle Association has a policy of “guns for everyone”—is considered by rights activists to be nonsensical and deliberately misleading. So, perhaps Bloomberg really didn’t need to apologize, despite claims that he may somehow be accountable for a program that seemed to target minorities.
Check the background of recidivist thugs in Baltimore, Chicago, New York or any other “urban neighborhood” where crime is concentrated and one is not likely to find any of them holding a valid concealed carry license or permit. Guns found in their possession may be stolen or otherwise obtained illicitly, regardless of skin color.
So burdening law-abiding citizens with “enhanced background checks,” waiting periods, permit-to-purchase requirements and other gun controls does not prevent crimes or solve them. Many gun rights activists believe background check requirements are actually a back-door registration scheme. It’s not “common sense” but nonsense, as leading rights advocates have argued.
But the gun control crowd stubbornly refuses to acknowledge they might be wrong. They seem more interested in unilateral public disarmament than they are in putting criminals behind bars to keep neighborhoods safe.
And that, according to Second Amendment activists, is really what this is all about. A misbegotten notion that taking guns away from good people will somehow prevent bad people from misusing guns may work in a fantasy world, but not in the real world.
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