We Need More Stinkin’ Gun Laws?
Every time the Democrats have a majority in both chambers on Capitol Hill and a Democrat sitting in the Oval Office, my friends in Gun-control Nation ramp up the call for more gun laws. Know what happens? They get squat.
The last federal gun law was passed in 1993, which was the Brady law, and required an instant background check for any over-the-counter transfer of a gun.
Know how many victims of gun-violence events there were in the five years leading up to Brady? Try 172,856 homicides, suicides and people shot by cops.
Know how many victims of gun-violence events there were in the five years leading up to and including 2020? Try 338,606 homicides, suicides and people shot by cops.
Wow! The Brady law made a big difference, right? Yea, right.
The per-100,000 homicide rate before Brady was 13.48, now it’s 20.41. That’s only an increase of 50 percent. No big deal, right? No big deal at all.
What the hell are we talking about here? A ban on ‘ghost’ guns? When I was a kid, we called them ‘zip’ guns. Those guns only fired a 22-caliber round. You think a 22-caliber bullet isn’t lethal if it hits you in the head?
I love those members of Congress like that schmuck from Arizona, Andy Biggs, who says he’s not concerned about ghost guns because he needs to ‘fight’ for the ‘rights’ of gun owners to be protected by the 2nd Amendment.
But the truth is that the two sides in the gun debate keep saying the same, goddamn thing every time. And I’m not surprised to hear the same goddamn thing from my friends in Gun-nut Nation, because what are they supposed to say? They don’t believe that laws which regulate legal gun ownership make any real difference in terms of the number of Americans who are killed or wounded by guns.
Know what? The gun-violence numbers I gave you above from the CDC happen to prove that schmucks like Andy Biggs may be right. There really hasn’t been a correlation either way between gun laws and gun violence, and for that matter, there doesn’t even seem to be a connection between how many guns are bought legally and how many people get shot with guns. Our friends who do gun research at UC-Davis couldn’t find any direct relationship between increases in violent crime during the Pandemic and increases in the sale of guns.
Here’s what we do know for sure about the relationship between guns, laws, and violent crime. And we know this because it has been studied and published multiple times going back some fifty years to when it was first studied and published by Marvin Wolfgang. What he found was that the most violent and vicious criminals who committed most of their criminal behavior between 16 and 35 (afterwards they were either dead or in jail), were almost all serial delinquents by their mid-teens.
This research was then supplemented by the research of Al Lizotte, who found that the men who committed crimes with guns first got interested in guns in their mid-teens, the same years which they were already exhibiting serious and sustained delinquent behavior.
In other words, we suffer from gun violence not because we don’t have enough gun regulations on the books, but because we lose track of the boys who begin to exhibit criminal behavior and get into guns at the same time.
I have yet to see one, single gun-control advocacy organization show the slightest interest or even awareness of the connection between adolescence, delinquency, and guns, even though this knowledge has been out there, published and validated, for fifty years.
My friends in Gun-control Nation face a serious choice. They can keep saying the same thing they have been saying about how we need more gun laws, whether these laws really help reduce gun violence or not. Or they can come up with a strategy which deals with the fundamental reason why someone picks up a gun, points it at someone else and pulls the trigger — on average — 275 times every day.