I am a person that can look passed the ideological differences that I have with others and form real relationships with those people. I can accept that people have different experiences and ideas, no matter how illogical their ideas may seem to me... well, there are some ideas out there that I can't abide tolerating, but we can leave that for another time.
Sometimes these people with ideas and opinions that greatly differ from my own will reach out to me and ask about my opinion on a certain topic or issue. I'm usually happy to join with these people in a sharing of ideas, as long as the conversation remains respectful.
Well, recently a friend that I grew up and went to school with sent me a message, asking, "What about this? What's wrong with this?" (referring to the image below)
I have had multiple conversations with this person about many different topics that we don't see eye-to-eye on. This isn't the first time we've discussed gun control ideas.
I'm just going to share my initial response to her question and the gun control measures that the above image proposes, and then I'll follow up with some more thoughts down below.
This was my response:
"I'll begin my response to this idea by addressing the title and just lay out the fundamental reason that guns are not as regulated as cars:
Owning and operating a car is not a right, but being able to own firearms is. It's as simple as that. Since the ability to own a gun is an inalienable right enshrined in the US Constitution the government doesn't have a free pass to regulate firearms like they can cars. Note my language here, "inalienable" and "enshrined"; this is a natural right that we have, not something given to us by government, but by God. It is our right to possess whatever tools that we see best fit for our self-preservation and protection. Nearly every gun control law that exists, and there are hundreds, if not thousands, is an infringement on the 2nd Amendment to the US Constitution and a violation of our God-given right.
Now, I'll go a little deeper on each of the suggested regulations
1.) Title & Tag at Each Point of Sale
This is already a requirement, in large effect, as any Type 07 or Type 08 FFL (Federal Firearms Licensee) is required by law to serialize any newly manufactured or imported firearm. When someone buys one of these firearms from a Type 01, Type 02, or Type 07 FFL (the only types permitted by law to sell firearms, as we're talking about here), after they have passed a federal, and possibly state, background check, they are required to complete ATF Form 4473, and the serial number on the firearm is recorded there, along with the buyers name, date of birth, social security number (or whatever federal identification number they have), phone number, address, etc. This legally ties the purchased firearm to the buyer.
At this point the firearm is the legal property of the buyer. The buyer can legally sell the firearm to another person without having to complete a background check and fill out a 4473. However, if the person that buys the firearm commits a crime with it, the firearm will be traced back to the last federally documented owner and that owner may be partially liable, unless they sold the firearm with a proper firearm bill of sale. Everyone I know that conducts private firearm sales do so with a proper firearm bill of sale or does a 4473 transfer through a Type 01, Type 02, or Type 07 FFL, because they don't want to risk the hassle of dealing with any legal ramifications after the sale. Also, most of the people I know that do private firearm sales sell to people they already know and won't deal with strangers at all.
2.) Gun Training
This is an elitist barrier to entry/access. Gun training is expensive. I know because I have taken multiple classes myself. Any safe and serious firearm owner takes the initiative and seeks out training on their own, because they want to be as effective as possible if they must use a firearm to protect themselves or others, without further increasing the risk to those they’re aiming to protect. But, again, training is expensive and very time-consuming. The people that are most in need of protecting themselves and/or others are typically those without the financial means and/or time to obtain skills training. This is one of the reasons that I volunteer to take people to the gun range where I have a membership and show them what I know about handling firearms. I’m permitted two free guests per visit, and I like to take advantage of that perk to help others. I’m not a firearms instructor, but I have some knowledge and skill, and am happy to pass that along to those that can’t obtain formal training for whatever reason.
3.) Written Test
This is simply an unnecessary barrier to entry/access. I know people that can safely outshoot me any day, that have far greater knowledge of firearms than I do, that can barely read and/or write. What would even be the purpose of a written firearms operation test? And the time and cost of this test also make it an elitist barrier to entry/access. Honestly, I wouldn’t have a problem at all with the written drivers-ed test being done away with.
4.) Practical Test
I can understand how this may seem like a very valid proposed requirement for firearm ownership, but it's the onus of the owner to be able to properly operate a firearm, and it’s their right to own a firearm without knowing anything about how to operate it; though, I doubt people with too little knowledge on firearms handling is a particular issue related to violent crime. If anything, those committing the crimes have too much experience with handling firearms. Also, what would a practical test be comprised of? Target shooting? Seems like an unnecessary barrier to overcome for firearm ownership and the cost of facilitating such a test would far outweigh it’s usefulness, and if the cost was passed down to the potential firearm purchaser, which I’m sure it would be, this cost and the time required to do the test would make this also an elitist barrier to entry/access.
5.) Health Requirements
Is this to suggest that if you are prescribed glasses that you must wear them whenever you’re shooting a firearm? If so, this is a foolish suggestion. A firearm is a tool used to protect life. If the time comes that it must be utilized, a person that wears glasses will be hoping that they have them on already at that time to better increase their chances of successfully eliminating a threat.
6.) Liability Insurance on Each Gun
What would be the purpose of liability insurance on a gun? With liability insurance on a car, if you accidentally hit someone your insurance will pay to cover the damage you caused. With firearms, if you shoot someone accidentally your debt is paid in whatever manner a judge and/or jury deems fitting. This is the function of our judicial system; to ensure justice as we’ve defined it is applied when necessary. Also, the person that was shot can sue in civil court to receive monetary compensation.
An accidental shooting is the last thing any respectable gun owner wants to happen. Most people take measures to ensure it doesn’t happen. I know I do. And, again, I will say that this is another elitist barrier to entry/access.
Another thing I’d like to mention, since we’re talking about insurance, is that I have insurance for firearms use. However, my insurance is there to protect me in the case that I must defend myself or someone else, because once I do that I will surely be arrested, almost no matter how clear the case is for self-defense, and it’s almost a guarantee that I will have to have a lawyer and take time off of work to attend court hearings, if not a trial. This is all because the laws put the onus on me to prove the justification of my actions in a self-defense shooting. My insurance ensures that I will have robust legal representation and will have a buffer against whatever wages I may lose while I am forced to present my case for protecting life. Just wanted to throw that in there. Many people are not even aware of this type of insurance or the legal aftermath that a person must endure after a justified self-defense shooting.
7.) Renewals and Inspections at Intervals
Tax collection is the purpose of tag renewals for vehicles. Completing the inspection of the vehicle before being able to pay taxes on it is a way to help ensure public safety, since people drive cars around other people and a car in disrepair can cause serious injury and/or death to others.
I know that you may be thinking, “well, a gun can cause serious injury and/or death to others,” but the truth is that a gun isn’t going to cause serious injury or death to others without an action from it’s wielder or due to the lack of inspection. In fact, if a gun is so far into disrepair that it’s going to cause injury to someone through general use, the injury will be inflicted upon it’s wielder and very likely no one else.
Another thing to mention here is that it’s unconstitutional to tax a right, but, as I mentioned before, nearly all gun control laws are unconstitutional, so I’m sure that unconstitutionality wouldn’t be a hurdle to stop a zealous politician from attempting to further violate the rights of the people.
I also want to mention this, just to wrap up…
What would be the point in instituting all of these regulations?
Reducing violent crime?
If that’s the reasoning, it’s flawed from the jump, because criminals are going to criminal, and these regulations wouldn’t do anything but make life more difficult for honest people that just want to be able to most effectively protect themselves and their loved ones.
There is no law that can be passed that will stop violent crime, or even reduce it.
The problems that we see in our country today are the result of moral decay within our society, and until that’s addressed nothing will change for the better. In fact, if things continue to progress as they are I will be all the more happy that I have my firearms and a way to protect myself and my family."
My friend isn't a gun owner. Her husband isn't a gun owner. I know her parents; they're not gun owners. This friend of mine is, respectfully, entirely ignorant about guns and gun ownership. Her primary source of information is left-leaning and all-out left wing mainstream media organizations. So, it's not surprising to me when she pops up with questions about something like this that she's in agreement with.
What is surprising, however, is the indignation she conveyed in her response to my above-cited reply.
She was shocked that I disagreed with every proposal set forth in the image above. Essentially, the main point in her follow-up reply was that we should tear down the US Constitution and start over with it.
She cried out in her reply, "HOW DO WE STOP MASS SHOOTINGS?!?"
I know her heart is hurting for the victims of the atrocities, their families, and their friends. I know this because she has a good heart. She is an empathetic person to the core; so much so that what she lacks in logic she makes up for with her empathy ten times over.
Her heart hurts so much for people that have been unfortunate to be present in these places of crime that she is fully willing to sacrifice her rights and everyone else’s if that would make it stop.
The problem is, though, that wouldn't make it stop.
There is no stopping evil. We live in a fallen world that is fully evil to its core. We are all born evil. It's our nature.
So, it shouldn't be surprising to anyone when these events occur where some evil person takes lives.
As I mentioned in my initial response to her question, the problem with this country is the moral decay that's taking place here. Every day we see a new level of perversion, depravity, corruption, immorality, and outright wickedness in the actions of the people all around us.
The first step in saving lives, and this country, is putting back in place the thing that guides us all to a better life: GOD.
When God is made the focus of our society we will have much less pain and chaos. We will have more peace.
When the Gospel of Jesus Christ is accepted as the proper guide for our lives, our hearts will be more content.
This is what we need. Not gun control, but Christ.