A lot of people have a problem with the term “gun violence,” and I get why. In theory, the term should only be used to identify a certain type of violence, particularly with regard to the weapon used. The problem is that we never hear about “knife violence” or “bat violence.”
As such, the term has become a proxy for violence itself, as if the gun is somehow responsible.
The unfortunate truth, though, is that the term is here to stay and it’s commonly used among enough people that we’re never putting that particular genie back in the bottle.
Especially since many want an office of gun violence prevention.
That’s an idea that’s floated around for quite a while, but a couple of Democrats are calling for its creation here and now.
Both Connecticut and Florida have been the site of some of the nation’s worst mass shootings. Now, lawmakers from both states are teaming up to introduce a bill that would establish a gun violence prevention office at the U.S. Department of Justice.
For Rep. Maxwell Frost (D-FL), it’s his first piece of legislation since he was elected to office. The first Gen Z Congressman united with long-time gun control advocates, Connecticut Senators Richard Blumenthal and Chris Murphy.
Frost, Blumenthal, and Murphy believe a national office of gun violence prevention would coordinate efforts between federal agencies, help in the collection of data, expand state and local outreach, and maximize programs to prevent gun violence.
The legislation would create an advisory council of senior Department of Justice officials, survivors, community violence intervention providers, public health officials, medical professionals, mental health clinicians, state and local public health department officials, and more.
So, basically, this office would be a great big virtue signal and actually do nothing.
In fairness, that’s about par for the course with government intervention, so why would that be shocking?
Note, however, who they include on that advisory council. Survivors get a seat at the table, but local law enforcement doesn’t. Public health officials get a seat, doctors, people like that get a say, but absolutely no one is part of a group where you might expect gun rights to play a factor.
Funny how that shakes out, isn’t it?
And that’s the problem here.
This office isn’t going to be about preventing gun violence in any appreciable way. It’s going to be about trying to restrict gun ownership in every way they think they can get away with it. There are no pro-gun stakeholders–people who also have an interest in stopping so-called gun violence–included because they won’t roll over and accept the board’s pronouncements.
There’s absolutely no need for this office, especially since we all should be aware that the surest way to make a problem worse is to have a sector of the United States government focused on solving it. Look at how well the Department of Education did in raising test scores or how well the War on Drugs or War on Poverty went.
So these three need to sit down, shut up, and let the grownups talk.