The big beef Everytown for Gun Safety has with national concealed carry reciprocity is on the domestic abuser front.
The gun control organization, funded by billionaire Michael Bloomberg, argues that the “Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017” (H.R. 38) would make “domestic violence survivors and entire communities less safe.”
Everytown’s logic is based, in part, on the idea that H.R. 38 would force states to allow “domestic abusers and convicted stalkers to carry concealed handguns within their borders.”
Domestic abusers are prohibited from owning firearms under the Gun Control Act. Already, their argument is on thin ice. How does national reciprocity override a federal law that bans domestic abusers from possessing firearms in all 50 states?
Answer: it doesn’t. To suggest that it forces states to welcome in waves of armed wife beaters is grossly misleading.
What Everytown is actually referring to is that some states have expanded prohibitions to go farther than the federal standard. Not all states have those laws on the books. Ergo, in Everytown’s estimation, creeps in states without those laws will now be allowed to carry in states with those laws.
On its face, it’s a seductive argument. Especially if one believes that laws are effective at curbing the behavior of outlaws, perves, and addicts. But we know better. The prohibitions against illicit drugs do nothing to stop the crackhead on the corner from taking another hit. Right?
By the same token, how well are Chicago’s gun laws working to stop the bloodshed there? Not well. Around 3,300 people have been shot so far this year. Turns out, gangbangers don’t give a rip about the law. Shocking, I know.
The point is not that we shouldn’t have laws but that we need realistic about their efficacy and impact. If you’re inclined to be law-abiding, they probably work. If you’re a scumbag who takes a crowbar to the teeth of your girlfriend because dinner was served at 5:13 p.m. instead of 5:00 p.m., they probably don’t work.
And, in that instance, this is where the focus needs to shift. From prevention to preparedness. From stopping the perp to empowering the victim. Because more gun control will not stop inherently violent men.
What will? A well-trained and well-armed woman. Though Everytown doesn’t want to acknowledge it, capable women defend themselves and their children every day in this country. This is a crucial part of the debate that’s continually ignored in their quest to dismantle the 2A.
At its core, national reciprocity is about making domestic violence survivors more safe — not less. It’s about ensuring that their right to defend themselves is not lost when they’re on the run from a violent ex, crossing into a state like New York or New Jersey. To not view it from this perspective is entirely shortsighted.