The loss of any innocent life is an absolute tragedy. I don’t think anyone will really disagree with that sentiment, to be sure. No one wants to see that sort of thing and we all want to put an end to it.
Unfortunately, it will be with us always. There will always be some who want to take human life for some reason and if they can get their hands on a gun, that’s what they’ll use. That’s not to say we shouldn’t work toward ending violence completely, but realistically, it’s never going to happen.
Luckily, violent crime rates have been trending down for decades now. We’re a less violent society than we were just 30 years ago. That’s a huge win.
That doesn’t work for the anti-gun media, though. They have to sell the public on an epidemic of violence to push an anti-gun agenda.
After his mother dropped him off at school, [Santa Clarita shooter’s name redacted] pulled a .45-caliber pistol out of his backpack, opened fire and killed two classmates, all using a weapon he’d assembled at home.
Such guns are sometimes called “ghost guns” — unregulated, easy to put together and almost impossible to trace because they have no serial number.
The United States has lived through a sharp rise in mass shootings in recent years, alarming the public and triggering new debate on how to control this epidemic of violence. But the administration of President Donald Trump has opposed any new gun control restrictions.
While there does appear to be an increase in mass shootings in recent years, the truth of the matter is that those still only account for a tiny fraction of “gun violence” deaths in this country.
Plus, as noted previously, violent crime rates overall have been trending down for decades, including gun violence. This despite the popularity of assault weapons, concealed carry and, yes, “ghost guns.”
Right now, we still don’t quite know how the Santa Clarita shooter got his weapon. Despite the reports assertion that he assembled it himself, we don’t actually know that. He may also have purchased it illegally from someone who did build it for that purpose, much like the Odessa shooter.
One problem with this anti-“ghost gun” hysteria is that it doesn’t take into account that people have been able to build firearms in their own homes for ages at this point. While the less than 80 percent receivers certainly make it easier, it’s by no means the only way someone can do so. 3D printed receivers, for example, are another option. Yes, that’s one reason I want a 3D printer, for example.
You also have things like the Ghost Gunner machines, CNC machines that can mill a number of receivers for various firearms. Those, however, are specialized CNC machines optimized for those few items. Anyone with access to the right equipment can easily do one without owning a Ghost Gunner.
In other words, you’re not going to stop this. You’re just going to stop law-abiding hobbyists from building firearms.
Another problem here is that violent crime has been decreasing. While the media and anti-gun politicians ramble on about how horrible it is that we have such ready access to firearms, the truth of crime has been decreasing either in spite of or because of that very access. Everyone has probably heard the phrase, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”
Well, if violent crime has continued to fall since the 1990s, maybe it’s time to acknowledge that something is working and leave it alone.
That doesn’t mean pretend mass shootings don’t happen. However, those started happening with no new laws being passed, which suggests it’s not a legal issue, but something else, something we need to take a deeper look at.
Yet let’s stop pretending we have an epidemic. We don’t.
Unless you live in someplace like Chicago. Then again, what are Illinois gun laws like again?