In the course of my day, I read a lot of letters to the editor on gun control in various newspapers across the country. I don’t read all by any stretch of the imagination, but I read a lot.
Most I just click away from because the nature of letters to the editor tend to make it difficult for ideas to really be fleshed out to any degree. Further, few people are sufficient enough wordsmiths to do much more than offer a few platitudes–from either side–before they run out of space as many papers have a word count cap for letters.
However, The Baltimore Sun ran one recently that really did a good job, I thought, of breaking down how a recent editorial was flawed.
Responding to the recent editorial, “Is there a law that could have saved the Capital Gazette?” (July 2), I have the following observations: Yes, Maryland does have some of the toughest gun laws in the nation, but the argument that the “fundamental facet of our laws and practices related to guns [in Maryland]” that is in error is not that we allow “some people who shouldn’t have guns to get them,” rather, it is that we keep law abiding citizens from routinely carrying them in public.
The Sun correctly states that “Police arrived on the scene almost immediately.” But five people still lost their lives! The flaw is the reasoning of people who think that the police can protect them from heinous criminals. What could have prevented or lessened this terrible tragedy? Only one thing — a good guy with a gun.
It is time for Maryland legislators to recognize what 42 other states have already recognized, that lawful concealed carriers, who are seven to 10 times less likely to be involved in a crime than a police officer, are not the problem. Only then will the citizens of Maryland be able to protect themselves before police arrive — even if they are only one minute away.
Precisely. (I urge you to read the whole thing.)
Look, I’ve said before that I knew a lot of police officers. I’m not unique in that regard. Almost anyone who has spent much time around them will tell you that these are people who will do whatever they can to protect people. What they can’t do, however, is change the laws of physics.
They can’t be in two places at once. They can’t cross vast distances in an instant. They can’t go back in time.
Without those things, the police can’t be guaranteed to protect you. They just can’t. About the only possibility is if we all had personal officers with us all the time, and that would get old quickly. Believe me.
So that means the only other alternative is to empower people to defend themselves.
Don’t get me wrong. I suspect an armed citizen in the newsroom wouldn’t have stopped the Capital Gazette shooting. Journalists aren’t generally known for being pro-gun, though they do exist. The odds are, though, that no one would have been carrying.
However, that doesn’t matter. The fact that the killer had no reason to suspect anyone was carrying was telling. He had no reason to doubt his plan would be successful.
What we need is more of these killers being put down by armed citizens, so it is something each potential shooter has to calculate. If he can’t, then perhaps he’ll try something else to make a name for himself, like doing stupid stuff on YouTube or something equally inane. While armed citizens won’t put down every potential threat, even if they’re present, they can put down enough of them that you’ll see the rate of these things plummet within no time at all.
But anti-gunners won’t acknowledge that. They pretend it doesn’t happen, that it can’t happen.
Then they accuse us of wanting dead kids.