AP Photo/Charles Krupa, File
It’s far too normal for gun laws in one state to be impacted by the actions of someone in another state. The mass shooting committed by someone in Florida can lead to “Do Something” legislation in states on the opposite side of the country and has.
Now, Nevada gun laws are under the microscope to some degree following the Gilroy shooting. The reason isn’t just because of what happened in Gilroy, but what happened in Nevada before then.
The latest attack happened Sunday in Gilroy, California, after a 19-year-old shooter snuck onto the grounds of the Gilroy Garlic Festival and killed three people. He carried out the massacre using an AK-47 style rifle — a weapon that officials say can’t be legally purchased or transported into California.
But the man bought the rifle legally in Nevada. And so the shooting will no doubt focus a spotlight on Nevada’s gun laws, some of which are among the nation’s least restrictive.
When a gun show takes place in Nevada, rates of gun deaths and injuries rise in neighboring California during the next two weeks, according to a study published in 2017. But when the gun shows take place in California, this local effect is not seen — even when accounting for California’s 10-day waiting period.
Of course, the story goes on to describe all of Nevada’s “failings” when it comes to guns. It’s a prime example of media bias as there’s no effort at all to present a counter to any of the anti-gun rhetoric presented.
Not that it matters right now.
At the moment, the fact that the sale took place in Nevada is being used in any number of ways to justify further intrusion into our constitutionally-protected rights. I suppose this was inevitable under the circumstances.
The truth is, anti-gunners are grasping at whatever straw they can manage.
“Oh, he used an AK-47 style rifle. Those need to be banned.”
Sure, he did. However, let’s acknowledge that the weapon is irrelevant. While there’s a lot of kvetching about so-called “assault weapons,” the killer in Gilroy could have done as much damage, if not more, with a handgun. Not to be callous, but the death toll here is low for us to be worrying about the firearm he used. He could have done as much damage with a pump-action shotgun, for crying out loud.
Further, that style of rifle was already banned in California. He broke the law when he took it across state lines in the first place. Gun control wasn’t enough to stop him there.
Let’s also not pretend there aren’t a whole lot of AK variants already running around California as it is, regardless of the laws. The gunman could as easily have obtained one that way if he couldn’t have gotten what he wanted from a Nevada gun dealer.
The gun store in Nevada did nothing wrong. It doesn’t matter to gun grabbers, though. They’ll keep trying to infringe on our rights regardless.