The city of Chicago is a rough place these days. Violence still dominates the local headlines, all while officials try to push more gun control laws and then blame every other state for their lax gun law. It’s never anything they did or didn’t do, after all. Someone else must be to blame.
And, I can make a valid case that they’re not wrong. It’s just usually not the people Chicago officials want to blame.
The Chicago Tribune has an interesting story kind of illustrating some of the problems.
With the solid crack of a crowbar, the hooded burglar sent the showcase glass showering onto the gun shop’s floor and quickly swept several pistols into his shoulder bag.
Among the cache that New Year’s morning at a northern Wisconsin gun shop was a lightweight 9mm handgun with a black polymer grip, a black steel slide and a 4½ inch barrel.
On one side was the stamp of the handgun’s unique serial number: YZC020. On the other, the logo of one of the most profitable and ubiquitous firearms companies in the world: Glock.
The Austrian handgun, a model 17, had been imported to the company’s Smyrna, Georgia, plant and then shipped to the gun shop, where it was to be sold for as much as $400.
In little over a month it was on the streets of Chicago, where it would be fired over and over and over, linked to some 27 shootings before it was taken off the streets. An extended magazine, which increases firepower, was attached.
All told, two dozen people were shot during its use here in a handful of Chicago neighborhoods, two of them killed. A cluster of shootings took place in North Lawndale on the West Side, for example, with three on one block alone.
So yeah, it’s someone else’s fault. It’s the criminals’ fault, not the law-abiding gun store that was victimized nor the state of Wisconsin, much less Indiana, Georgia, or any of a number of other states that get blamed for the violence occurring elsewhere in the country.
This was a stolen firearm, taken unlawfully from a licensed dealer who tried to do everything right with regard to the law. Still, the bad guys got a gun.
A single gun linked to 27 shootings in Chicago and two homicides. Correction: A single stolen gun.
That’s the message that Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot and others in the city need to take to heart. While straw buys happen, sure, most guns used by criminals were stolen from law-abiding owners or gun stores. These are victims of the crime, not perpetrators.
Invariably, though, the “solutions” proposed by people like Lightfoot is to make it harder for the good guys, not the bad guys.
After all, what background checks would stop a stolen gun from changing hands? FOID card requirements sure don’t seem to help. In fact, none of the plethoras of gun laws on the books in Illinois did jack to stop this gun from changing hands. Not a one.
That’s because the black market doesn’t play those games. If you’ve got the money, you can get a gun. Plain and simple.
If we were fortunate, this would wake some of the anti-Second Amendment advocates in Illinois up and make them realize that the problem is with criminals doing criminal things, not what the law-abiding do. Unfortunately, too many of these people are absolute zealots who mistakenly believe they’re the reasonable ones.