Gun control activists are all too often people who have lost someone to violence. They’ve witnessed some horror or experienced some loss. Some are even survivors themselves.
They’re coming from a place of emotion, and I get it. I understand completely.
But emotion often hides reality, which is why it pays to try and take a step back and look at things objectively. That’s something one Kentucky anti-gunner missed in her comments to the media recently.
Pat Quiggins is more than just a supporter of a new bill supporting protection for victims of domestic violence. She’s a survivor.
“My brother-in-law got guns all the time. There was no background check. There was nothing,” said Quiggins. “He’d do something. Somebody would take the gun, he would throw it away. He would get another one and another one and another one.”
He used one to kill his wife, who was Quiggins’ sister, and then himself in 1991.
The bill she’s advocating for would require those convicted of domestic violence to surrender their guns.
Now, this is a man who had his guns taken, and he would go out and get more despite it being illegal for him to do so. I mean, it’s almost like the law didn’t stop a violent criminal from obtaining weapons.
Quiggins is missing that point.
Now, again, I understand where she’s coming from. She lost her sister, and I can only imagine how painful that was. I know what it was like losing a dear friend, so I can only imagine what it’s like losing a sibling.
That doesn’t lend weight to her words, though. After all, she’s still missing the fact that her brother-in-law kept getting guns despite the existence of laws that were meant to keep him from buying guns. Had universal background checks been on the books, he still would have gotten guns by finding someone willing to skip the check.
He was clearly a violent individual. No one is debating that. He was violent and was disarmed repeatedly apparently, and what good did it do?
The laws failed.
I’m sorry. I hate it for Quiggins and the rest of her family, but the law failed. The problem is that the law generally sucks at preventing things, as we’ve seen. What it does is punish people for transgressions. We hope that the punishment will dissuade many from committing illegal acts, and that does tend to work to some extent, but laws meant expressly for preventing acts from happening? They don’t work.
After all, look at what happened. Laws meant to keep domestic abusers from having guns to prevent further violence did. Not. Work.
So now the answer is still more laws? No, I don’t think so.
Quiggins’ sister would have been better served with programs that would help her get away from her abusive husband or tougher penalties for his transgressions that could have kept him locked up long enough for her to get away from him for good. Where’s the advocacy for that instead of more gun control?