Columnist: Gun Bans Won't Stop Deadly Virus

Right now, the Covid-19 infection is taking up a lot of the news. It’s understandable. It’s a scary illness that’s killing a lot of people right now. While we may debate about just how severe the pandemic actually is, we do know that it’s bad enough.

Making it worse, though, are those who have used it as an excuse to curtail the Second Amendment rights of ordinary Americans.

One of those is New Orleans Mayor Latoya Cantrell.

Now, a columnist in nearby Baton Rouge is taking issue with her actions.

Most leaders have an agenda. Now is not the time. New Orleans Mayor Latoya Cantrell is doing a great job protecting the city she runs from the spreading of the coronavirus. But she went too far when signing an emergency order last week giving her the power to suspend the sale and transporting of firearms.

“The emergency authority is hereby empowered, if necessary, to suspend or limit the sale, dispensing, or transporting of alcoholic beverages, firearms, explosives, or combustibles,” Cantrell’s proclamation of a state of emergency read in part.

As a Democrat, Cantrell likely and sincerely views the physical gun, not the dark heart of the person illegally pulling the trigger, as the main cause of violence in New Orleans. But unjustifiably shooting someone is already illegal. Outlaw guns and only outlaws will have them. To “suspend or limit the sale or transporting of guns” only prevents law-abiding citizens from defending themselves.

Columnist Dan Fagan added:

This is a time when we need to know our leaders are cautious and prudent when taking measures to limit our freedoms. Most of us are willing to give up some freedoms if it leads to saving lives by slowing the spread of the coronavirus. Taking away the ability to purchase or transport a firearm does nothing, nothing, to stop the spread of the virus. What it does do is shift the power balance decidedly in favor of the criminal as opposed to the law-abiding citizen if things get crazy.

He’s absolutely correct on all counts.

Sure, there are many of us who find “shelter in place” orders grating and an odious abridgment of our civil liberties, but many more tolerate them because they’re hopeful we can stop the spread of the disease.

Yet gun stores aren’t known vectors for the disease. People aren’t picking up a Glock and Covid-19. It’s just not an issue.

The truth is, Cantrell wants to halt gun sales because she doesn’t like guns. She mistakenly believes that this is somehow a good thing and is using the virus to advance her own agenda is perfectly acceptable.

To make matters worse, Cantrell will likely attribute any decrease in violent crime to her shuttering of gun stores rather than the plethora of other potential factors such as people being off the streets completely. We all know this is coming and we might as well prepare for it.

But Fagan is right to call out Cantrell on her antics now, not waiting until there are still more antics later. She went too far and her efforts will do nothing to impact the virus.