The anti-gun New York Times editorial board had a come to Jesus moment following the mass shooting in San Bernardino, California, in that it finally admitted what we already suspected: the leadership of the publication supports civil disarmament.
The editorial board stated the following:
It is past time to stop talking about halting the spread of firearms, and instead to reduce their number drastically — eliminating some large categories of weapons and ammunition… Certain kinds of weapons, like the slightly modified combat rifles used in California, and certain kinds of ammunition, must be outlawed for civilian ownership.
Hilarious! Hilarious because it’s so asinine. I’ll give you three reasons: 1) Prohibition never works, 2) “The Assault Weapon Myth,” 3) Civil disarmament is a farce.
Prohibition Never Works
Okay, reason numero uno. Prohibition works, right? Wrong. Prohibition doesn’t work. It never works. I’m not only talking about the Prohibition Era, when booze was widely banned in the U.S., but also the War on Drugs. Think about it. How well did either one of those work out for us? Prohibition led to the rise of organized crime, the modern gangster movment: Capone, Lucky Luciano, Gotti. And the War on Drugs helped to create, what the United States Intelligence Community currently refers to as, “the most powerful drug trafficking organization in the world,” the Sinaloa Cartel.
Now, if drug bans and booze bans don’t work, what are the chances that gun bans will? I’m going to go out on a limb and say zero. Why? Because, sadly, the criminal demand for firearms will never go away. Never! Bad people want to do bad things. And typically, to achieve those nefarious deeds, they need to impose their will by force. Hence the need or demand for weapons.
Just as there was a black market for alcohol, and just as there is a black market for Oxy or Meth or Smack, there would be a black market for firearms. Well, let’s face it, there already is. But with a widespread ban in place, the black market would balloon in size and those existing traffickers running guns would be greatly empowered.
The point to be made about prohibition is that it never works. Drug bans, gun bans, and booze bans don’t work. Why? Because they focus on supply instead of addressing the key part of the equation: demand.
“The Assault Weapon Myth” by Lois Beckett
“The Assault Weapon Myth” by Lois Beckett, which was (ironically) published in the NY Times in 2014, is one of the best and most concise articles on why banning black rifles is a red herring in the argument over gun violence.
In short, black rifle bans are a distraction from the real sources of gun violence: poverty and drugs. I suggest you read the entire article because there are so many cogent points, but to some it up Beckett reminds the reader that the Clinton-Era ban on so-called “assault weapons” had virtually no effect on crime rates. Moreover, that assault weapons are rarely used to kill innocents.
“But in the 10 years since the previous ban lapsed, even gun control advocates acknowledge a larger truth: The law that barred the sale of assault weapons from 1994 to 2004 made little difference,” wrote Beckett.
“It turns out that big, scary military rifles don’t kill the vast majority of the 11,000 Americans murdered with guns each year. Little handguns do,” noted Beckett.
Beckett uses numbers (facts!) to make his case, such as that in 2012, only 322 people were murdered with any kind of rifle, according to FBI data, and cites a DOJ evaluation that found, “Should it be renewed, the ban’s effects on gun violence are likely to be small at best and perhaps too small for reliable measurement.”
The other important point Beckett makes, which indubitably gets lost in the debate, is that gun violence is endemic in the African-American community. That’s right, the vast majority of gun-related violence disproportionately affects young, black men.
“Annually, 5,000 to 6,000 black men are murdered with guns,” writes Beckett. “Black men amount to only 6 percent of the population. Yet of the 30 Americans on average shot to death each day, half are black males.”
Consequently, the true solutions to reducing gun violence don’t depend on prohibiting possession of a symbolic rifle, but in community outreach in impoverished neighborhoods. Beckett says:
More than 20 years of research funded by the Justice Department has found that programs to target high-risk people or places, rather than targeting certain kinds of guns, can reduce gun violence.
David M. Kennedy, the director of the Center for Crime Prevention and Control at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice, argues that the issue of gun violence can seem enormous and intractable without first addressing poverty or drugs. A closer look at the social networks of neighborhoods most afflicted, he says, often shows that only a small number of men drive most of the violence. Identify them and change their behavior, and it’s possible to have an immediate impact.
The editorial board should put that in their gun-banning peace pipe and smoke it!
Civil Disarmament is a Farce
Maybe it’s just me but I find the whole notion of large-scale, Australian-style civil disarmament to be wholly illogical.
Let’s think about what those jackals are advocating. They’re telling us that optimal public safety is achieved when citizens are maximally disarmed and defenseless. On what planet does that make any sense — any sense at all?
With a straight face, the Obama administration, the NY Times and the entire anti-gun movement are telling us that when you give up the means to protect yourself, your family and your property you will be safer. When your natural right of self-defense is greatly impaired, you will be safer. When you let go of this right to keep and bear arms you will be safer.
Folks, it doesn’t get much more Orwellian than that. Talk about newspeak! I think I’m going to start referring the anti-gun machine as The Ministry of Public Safety, i.e., a coalition dedicated to disarming citizens and rendering them helpless in the face of any and all threats.
For the record, they’ve tried this in Europe. And lo and behold it doesn’t work! The attacks in Paris proved that in spades. Doesn’t matter how tight the gun laws are, evildoers will find a way to carry out their evil deeds. What’s interesting is that the NY Times Editorial board acknowledged as much:
Opponents of gun control are saying, as they do after every killing, that no law can unfailingly forestall a specific criminal. That is true. They are talking, many with sincerity, about the constitutional challenges to effective gun regulation. Those challenges exist. They point out that determined killers obtained weapons illegally in places like France, England and Norway that have strict gun laws. Yes, they did.
But at least those countries are trying. The United States is not.
Those countries aren’t trying, they’re failing! What I mean is that they’re failing to keep individuals safe. What’s more, is that their failure comes at a huge cost: the natural right of the citizen to defend himself or herself. All they’ve done is removed a fundamental civil liberty and replaced it with the false promise of a safer public.
At the end of the day, anti-gunners do not want to reckon with the fact that each individual is responsible for his or her own safety. That’s really what this all boils down to. The public safety business is not exclusively the government’s job. Police show up after the fact to investigate the crime and arrest the bad guys. Laws may dissuade bad behavior, but their main purpose is to give us a precedent on how to punish the guilty.
More often than not, the only one in a position to actually stop a crime or thwart a shooting is you or me or the neighbor down the street. In that sense, we’re all potential victims. The question then is: do we want to act like victims, and give in to what may come, or do we want to be ready and prepared with the tools that we need to fight back?
Anti-gunners are telling us that we should prepare to be victims. When something bad happens, we ought to wait for the government to save us. That’s complete folly. In any other context, that line or reasoning would be laughed at. It’s like saying, don’t bother to learn CPR or the Heimlich maneuver, instead just hope that the EMTs arrive there in time. That’s crazy.
So, now, I can’t help but to chuckle when I hear these arguments for banning firearms or reducing the number of them. They don’t make sense historically, as Prohibition has taught us, empirically, as the numbers show, or logically, as one’s relative safety is a matter of personal preparedness, not dependency on government.