One of the measures being pushed in Virginia right now is a reinstatement of the not-so-long dead gun rationing law. You see, in the not so distant past, one could only purchase a single firearm per month in the Old Dominion State. You could own as many guns as you wanted, but you had to wait a month between purchases.
This was overturned a few years back by the Republican legislature because, well, it’s stupid.
Now, though, this particular brand of idiocy is back with Democratic control. It really shouldn’t be, though.
You see, I call this particular bit of legislation stupid because it is. Arguably, it’s the most stupid legislation being considered in the state, and that’s saying something.
First, let’s look at what this is supposed to do.
In theory, gun rationing limits straw buyers from flooding the market with firearms. Now, looking at this without understanding the depths to which criminals will go in order to get guns, it might look like a good idea.
The problem is, straw buys represent only a relatively small percentage of the ways in which criminals get guns in the first place. Second is that even among straw buyers, there are very few “professional” straw buyers. Most straw buys are carried out by someone the criminal knows, like a girlfriend or relative.
In the end, gun rationing does absolutely nothing to limit the flow of guns onto Virginia’s streets.
Which is fine. Last year, with no gun rationing and years of Republican lawmakers expanding gun rights, Virginia was the fourth safest state in the entire nation.
Meanwhile, law-abiding citizens were restricted from buying more than one gun at a time.
For anti-gunners, that doesn’t seem like a big deal. After all, they argue, can’t you wait a little while to buy a gun?
The problem there is that by inhibiting all law-abiding citizens from purchasing multiple firearms, you’re hitting everyone with a very broad hammer. While I rarely buy more than one gun a month anyway, some people do. Some people may need to.
For example, take the guy who decides to take up hunting because he thinks it’s a great way to spend time with his young son. The problem is that he doesn’t own a hunting rifle. So, he goes to the gun store to buy him and his son a rifle, only to be told he can only buy one per month. The problem is deer season starts in a couple of weeks and he won’t be able to get a second gun before them.
His son is too young to buy his own rifle, so what’s a dad to do?
What about the woman who is being stalked and needs a carry gun, but just bought a shotgun for shooting skeet a week before learning she had a stalker?
There are endless possibilities for scenarios where someone could become inconvenienced, if not endangered, because of gun rationing. Meanwhile, it does absolutely nothing to make anyone any safer.
At the end of the day, we need to understand gun rationing for what it really is. Gun rationing is simply a matter of reminding gun owners who really holds the power, at least in the gun-grabbers’ minds. They want to stem the flow of guns into law-abiding citizens’ hands simply because they have the power to do so. Nothing more, nothing less.
Oh, they might rationalize it in any number of ways and possibly even believe those rationalizations, but at the end of the day, the only thing rationing is good for when it comes to guns is to flex government power and nothing else.