Triggers don't pull themselves
More predictable than a morning sunrise is the knee-jerk call for increased restrictions on gun ownership every time some heinous event embarrasses our nation. True, such tragedies occur elsewhere, but they are more likely to involve some kind of knife (an "edged weapon" in the language of military history). Throughout the world, crazed fiends will every now and then purposefully drive a motor vehicle into a group of innocent pedestrians.
American liberals just cannot reconcile themselves with the Second Amendment. They still focus on the term "well-regulated militia," as if membership in a military organization was necessary to be covered by the amendment. They seem to not be able to read further and see the concluding phrase: "the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed." Emphasis added, for obvious reasons.
Suffice it to say the problem is much more cultural than it is mechanical. We may even be sort of a violent society...but things used to be worse. In the early 19th century, land pirates plundered convoys of settlers. In the lead-up to the Civil War, college students often wore sidearms. During Prohibition, organized crime flourished. Various criminal organizations had their own machine shops where weapons would be repaired, modified, or even fabricated from scratch. This didn't abate until alcoholic beverages were re-legalized.
The left's pre-occupation with inanimate hardware can be easily explained. Guns are a lot simpler to focus on than the tangled web of human behavior, and propagandists rely on simplicity, not complexity. This leads us inexorably to the whole "system" of criminal justice. Phrases such as "penitentiary" and "Department of Corrections" presume that broken people can be fixed, much like how a wooden chair can be glued back together.
The real purpose for arresting and punishing criminals is not to repair those who break the law, but rather to deter them from even trying. Many crimes are committed when the perpetrator has a reasonable expectation of getting away with it. Are you listening, George Soros and your progeny of criminal-hugging district attorneys? Of course, getting dangerous sociopaths to mend their ways is a good thing, but protecting the innocent from being preyed upon by evil thugs is more important.
What is encouraging is the growing skepticism being applied to the whole concept of gun control. Not only are many of the legalities suspect, but all that has been done so far seems to have yielded little, if any, benefit. So why bother? Oh...and yet, the hardcore anti-gun folks continue to cite the recent boom in gun sales as the underpinning of the serious bump in "mass" shootings. No mention is made of the profound effect restrictive pandemic measures have had on our collective mental well-being. The threat of further politically imposed impediments to gun ownership often stimulates a flurry of legitimate buying, known as getting in under the wire.
Speaking of hare-brained schemes to ostensibly improve public safety, the mayor of San Jose, CA proposed requiring gun owners to carry liability insurance. Since many legitimate gun owners also own their homes, such a requirement would be fatuous. But also, liability insurance only covers accidental damage, and the vast majority of shootings are not accidental. It also sounds, again, like an infringement to me.
Rather than legally obtain their weapons, criminals prefer doing it the other way: in a darkened parking lot, out of the trunk of a fellow criminal's car. Meanwhile, according to the Heritage Foundation, 650 criminal acts were thwarted in the U.S. last year by the legal and defensive use of a firearm. Also, fundamentally, were it not for the Second Amendment, the U.S. Constitution would be nothing more than a scrap of paper. Given the obnoxious tendency for many politicians to become tyrants, a defensively armed public is an obvious inhibitor for things going too far.
As far as triggers not pulling themselves, there may actually be an exception. Just ask Alec Baldwin.
Image via Pexels.