AP Photo/Lynne Sladky

We’ve often countered arguments in favor of gun bans by pointing out that criminals aren’t going to give up their guns. This is often laughed at by anti-gunners, either that or they argue it’s irrelevant for some ridiculous reason.

Now, with New Zealand on the cusp of banning certain firearms, the nation’s most notorious gang has vowed not to give up their guns.

The Mongrel Mob gang, which is one of New Zealand’s most notorious, won favorable headlines when it said it would protect mosques after the attacks and pledged solidarity with the country’s Muslim community.

But Sonny Fatu, who heads the gang’s Waikato branch based in North Island, said members who had illegal guns should be trusted to not harm members of the public.

“Will gangs get rid of their weapons? No. Because of who we are, we can’t guarantee our own safety,” he told the news site Stuff.

“It’s not in our culture to inflict harm on innocent people like what happened in Christchurch,” Fatu said.

“The attacks between our organizations are gang-on-gang, they do not involve the non-gang members.

“Although there may be peripheral damage and violence that occasionally spills out into the public eye, it is absolutely and without intention for any harm to be caused to non-gang members,” he said.

Police Minister Stuart Nash, however, said there would be no exceptions to the new legislation and that there would be five years prison time  for those caught with them.

Maybe it’s just me, but this is absolutely hilarious.

A criminal organization is telling the world that they’re not going to give up their guns despite the law. It’s exactly what we’ve told anti-gunners would happen, and yet they seem to pretend the laws would somehow make everything better.

Honestly, American gangs could argue the same thing. The focus of their violence isn’t the innocent, but other gang members. They’re not that particular about collateral damage. These are the same gangs that have turned inner cities into warzones. Does anyone think New Zealand’s Mongrel Mob is that different from the Bloods or Crips when it comes to guns?

Oh, the Mongrel Mob may be more civic-minded, but no criminal organization is going to give up their guns. They’re going to hold onto them.

Which is why ordinary citizens need to be able to hold onto their guns.

New Zealand doesn’t care, though. It’s reacting to an isolated incident–something incredibly rare in New Zealand–as if it’s an epidemic. This is the epitome of a political knee-jerk reaction, yet it’s proceeding. Ordinary citizens will be disarmed while the criminals are already saying they won’t give up their guns. New Zealand will go decades without another terrorist attack, just like it went decades before this one, and claim the law worked.

But criminals will still act with impunity. They’ll still commit their crimes. They’ll still hurt innocent people.

There’s a lesson in this for the United States. In particular, that no matter what gun control you pass, the criminals aren’t going to roll over and go away.