Editorial blows it about gun "safeguards"

Editorial blows it about gun "safeguards"
MikeGunner / Pixabay

In the course of my career, I’ve read a whole lot of editorials about guns. It’s fascinating how the unbiased media seems almost universally against the Second Amendment as a concept, even if they claim otherwise. The few who aren’t tend to be smaller papers in more rural communities.

The bigger the city, the less likely you are to see it.

So you already know that St. Louis isn’t going to be filled with pro-gun media by any stretch of the imagination, and a recent editorial makes that even clearer.

n a development that should shock exactly no one, a national study has ranked Missouri near the bottom of the nation in terms of the strength of its gun laws — and near the top in per capita gun deaths. The correlation is undeniable: Missourians, living in a state that has gutted most of its previous restrictions on firearms, are nearly twice as likely to die from gun violence than their neighbors in Illinois, which imposes rational restrictions.

And how are Missouri legislators responding to this continuing crisis? By trying to make it even easier for convicted criminals to lay their hands on guns, easier to bring guns into churches, schools and trains, and harder for police to enforce what few gun laws are on the books.

This is insanity.

Polls show overwhelming majorities of Americans, including most gun owners, favor reasonable reforms like universal criminal background checks for all gun purchases. That’s confirmation that on gun rights, as on most issues, the broad middle of America isn’t radical, but reasonable, respecting individual rights but in balance with a society’s responsibility to keep its people safe.

That’s not true. There have been polls suggesting that, but we’ve also seen a lot of polls that oppose additional rules on guns.

While the article is complaining about Missouri removing “safeguards,” the editorial board for St. Louis Today completely ignores the fact that the guns causing problems are firearms that were obtained through already illegal means.

Gun control hasn’t actually stopped the violence which has long played the city and didn’t well before Missouri banned enforcement of federal gun control measures.

What creates the problems in St. Louis isn’t an excess of liberty, of personal freedom, but a number of factors that exist within large cities but not in more rural communities. That’s why small-town Missouri isn’t seeing their homicide rate climb like a sherpa on Mt. Everest.

Those gun control laws weren’t safeguards. They didn’t stop criminals. They only interfered with the law-abiding, and those measures being gone are a net win for the state.

“But we’re seeing more murders after they passed these laws,” some will exclaim, and they’re not wrong.

It should be noted, however, that Los Angeles and Chicago both hit their highest homicide rates in years while having no gun laws repealed. How is it that repeal of gun control is the problem in St. Louis but the lack of repeals irrelevant everywhere else?

The simple answer is that it’s not. Missouri’s actions do nothing but benefit good, decent folks, so stop pretending otherwise.