Disarming Victims Is a Dumb Way to Fight Crime
If a Martian landed on Earth and wanted to quickly determine how dangerous an area was, all he would need is a quick review of local gun laws: the stricter the gun laws, the more gun violence there will be. It is almost as absolute as the law of gravity.
How, then, can it be "common sense" to adopt the policies that have made Chicago; Washington, D.C.; and Detroit human target galleries? Democrats argue you have blood on your hands unless you join them in making all of America into the violence-free paradise that is Chicago. It is absurd nonsense.
The only thing that would make it more absurd would be to demand that all schoolchildren be equipped with argyle sweaters to protect them from gunfire. Democrats would probably argue for that if they could get away with it, but it might make it too obvious that they are unconcerned about the safety and protection of anyone except their own ruling class. Certainly, mandating argyle sweaters for schoolchildren would be a more rational policy than universal gun control laws: it would not make things any better, but it also would not make them any worse.
Why, then, do conservatives and Republicans (not synonymous terms) almost invariably respond to such absurdity defensively? One can only suppose that, confronted with such angry, shrieking hysteria, conservatives are trying to mollify a crazy person rather than reason with a serious person. Enough already. The dramatic rise of stark violence, including mass shootings, is a deadly serious issue that calls for sober and thoughtful discussion and analysis, based on facts, evidence, and history. It is time to demand accountability for enacting serious policy proposals that have a track record of actual effectiveness rather than scoring partisan talking points atop the pile of victims.
In the mid-'90s, I was running a Republican U.S. Senate campaign in Illinois. My guy was getting hammered by the left for supporting gun rights. In the midst of this, I got a call from a district attorney from a mid-size northern county. He told me he hated registration laws because they were enforced only against law-abiding citizens who had done no other harm. Startled, I asked him if he didn't charge actual criminals with such violations. He said he did, but those charges were always tossed by the court before trial — every time. Only otherwise innocent people were punished for registration violations. It was a staggering moment, but if you check it out, you will find that it is pretty consistent in every jurisdiction.
Democrats and the establishment media have pushed defunding the police for several years now. The result has been a sobering spike in violent crime. Left-wing D.A.s routinely offer low-bail or no-bail bonds for violent criminals, who go on to commit more violence. Police are often fearful of being accused of racism — by the left and the media -- if they act on credible warnings of serious and deviant threats before the disturbed person attacks. This is a big part of why we find that so many of these killers had been on the radar of law enforcement for months or even years without any preventive action. Police had known for years how dangerous the Parkland School shooter was — and did nothing. The FBI was warned a year in advance by the Russian government of the radicalism of the Boston Marathon bombers — but did nothing, not even warn Boston police. The man who drove his SUV into a Waukesha Christmas Parade, killing five and injuring 40, was out on bond for allegedly running over his girlfriend a few weeks earlier with the same SUV. One could go on ad nauseam, but you get the point.
Left-wing Democrat policies have made our society deadly dangerous. Now they want to make it even more dangerous. Efforts by Mitch McConnell, Lindsey Graham, Jon Cornyn, and other such Republicans to mollify the shrieking left only enable the rising tide of violence. In this case, a rising tide sinks all boats. Republicans must not enable policies that amplify violence in order to get a few plaudits from the fact-averse national media. The media believe, with Fernando from Saturday Night Live's glory days, that it is better to look good than to be good. Okay, I paraphrased just a bit, but the left has entirely abandoned achieving good results for appearing impotently noble. Our children — and all our citizens — deserve better than this. Republicans are the last hope for a firewall of good, rational, and effective policy. That firewall is looking like balsa wood these days. We need safer streets in all our communities.
We can start by rigorously enforcing those gun laws that are on the books. Then remove criminals from the streets by enforcing hefty bail requirements. Crack down hard on repeat offenders instead of making our justice system a revolving door for everyone except Trump supporters. That is just the beginning. We need mental health reform, cultural reform, and serious welfare reform to address the absence of fathers in so many young people's lives. But the first job is to stabilize the bleeding patient. That will come with serious crime control. Unless the left gets serious about that, it should have no place at the table at all. This is a job for serious men, not virtue-signaling simpletons.
Gun control will make things worse. Crime control will begin to stabilize things. Let's get serious. Start by understanding that disarming victims is a dumb way to fight crime.
Charlie Johnston is the founder of the Corps of Renewal and Charity (corac.co), a national faith-based network of Christian activists.
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