GOP shouldn't be blamed for no gun control, but celebrated

GOP shouldn't be blamed for no gun control, but celebrated
AP Photo/Keith Srakocic

All around the nation, there are people who are upset. They’re angry that we don’t have gun control. A lot of them are angry with President Joe Biden over it, too. A lot of them think he simply hasn’t done enough.

However, there are some who place the blame squarely at the feet of Senate Republicans, such as this letter writer.

The progressives are criticizing the wrong people. Democrats passed gun-control legislation in the House. It would have passed in the Senate were it not for the fact that all of the Republicans in the Senate, under the thumb of Mitch McConnell, support filibustering the legislation; and the votes of 10 Republican senators are necessary for the legislation to come to the floor for a vote. Polls show that 85-94% of voters support universal background checks, including 77% of gun owners. Republicans in Congress are not representing their constituents and should be voted out of office.

Oh, boy, where to start.

First, those polls are old and seriously flawed. More recent polls show nowhere near as much support for new gun control laws.

Second, it’s not that people should be blaming Republicans for the lack of new regulations, but celebrating them for it.

Gun control is a simplistic solution to a complex problem, and those never actually work out. In fact, if you look at the history of gun control at the federal level, it has never resulted in a drop in criminal activity. The Gun Control Act of 1968’s passage was, in fact, followed by a spike in the homicide rate.

Restricting people’s right to keep and bear arms only restricts those who will honor the restrictions in the first place. Criminals are, at the very most, mildly inconvenienced.

Yet those same restrictions make it much more difficult for people like you or me to stand up and protect ourselves and others. That’s really all that gets accomplished.

I get that the letter writer isn’t likely to understand this, but that doesn’t make it any less true.

Which is why the letter writer is wrong. The Republicans shouldn’t be blamed for gun control not getting passed, they should be celebrated for it.

Honestly, I really thought we’d be lucky to get through the first two years of the Biden presidency with only something like universal background checks or red flag laws passing. I’d have counted us blessed if that was all we ended up with.

Yet the Republican senators have held firm. More than that, though, Sen. Joe Manchin has also held firm despite many in his party having very unkind things to say about him. They held firm and, as a result, we’re not seeing any likely gun control bills getting crammed down our throat before the midterms.

At that point, most are expecting Republicans to take at least the House and potentially even the Senate, which would make gun control even less likely to come to pass. That’s a huge win for all of us.

So our letter writer shouldn’t fret. While lawmakers won’t pass the gun control he so vehemently wants, he shouldn’t worry. It’ll work out better this way.