Demands raised for gun control after holiday-week violence

AP Photo/Alan Diaz, File

The headlines said it all. Publications all over the nation–not everywhere, but scattered throughout the country–reported violent shootings leaving more than three or four injured. At least two of those were true mass shootings, namely Fort Worth and Philadelphia.


So, we knew the calls for gun control would come, and come they have.

It seems that many people looked at the violent week and figured it was time Congress infringes a little on the Second Amendment.

Just after 7 a.m. on a stifling morning, one day before his city’s July 4 holiday celebrations, Baltimore’s mayor dashed around the plaza outside city hall. Clad in a white polo shirt and sneakers, Mayor Brandon Scott, 39, ran from point to point, maneuvering between camera crews and a series of tightly-scheduled nationally televised interviews. He’d catch his breath, handle a phone call and, at one point, sprang back inside the building briefly in between appearances.

Scott is a former city council member who previously represented one of the northernmost sections of a city with a troublingly stubborn history of gun violence. He wanted to make a plea to America, and more specifically to Washington, that morning.

“We need Congress to act on this issue,” Scott told CBS News as the morning began. It’s a message and phrase he would repeat at an afternoon press conference, standing with his top city officials and his acting police commissioner.

“There is more work to do, including establishing truly universal background checks, banning assault weapons and large-capacity ammunition feeding devices, closing more loopholes related to illegal gun purchases, cracking down on gun trafficking and more,” said Democratic Rep. Shontel Brown, of Ohio, on Sunday. Her comments came in the wake of a mass shooting of nine people in Cleveland, one of nearly 30 mass shootings in the U.S. already in July.


First, most of those “mass shootings” are only mass shootings if you accept the Gun Violence Archive’s definition, which no actual authority has accepted, yet the media parrots it as if it’s the only definition you need.

Second, with all of these shootings, we still don’t know all that much about them. In most, we don’t know how the bad guys got the guns in the first place, and most of those are likely guns acquired illegally in the first place.

For all this talk about Congress needing to pass gun control, there’s not a lot of talking by these folks about all the gun control that failed to stop these shootings.

Baltimore, for example, is Maryland, a gun control state. They can pretend that federal gun control would somehow work better, but there’s no evidence of that anywhere that I’ve seen. In fact, quite the opposite.

Check out this chart by ResearchGate:

Twentieth century United States homicide and suicide rates wax and wane over time, but at times of government prohibitions, both rates visibly increase, only to decrease over time as restrictions are eased 

The Gun Control Act of 1968 passed and the homicide rate went up.

That doesn’t exactly sound like gun control doing a particularly stellar job. We also know that while the assault weapon ban coincided with a drop in the homicide rate, the rate was dropping before the law was passed and continued to drop for decades after the law sunset.


So I’m sorry, I’m not buying this pressing need for gun control.

There are a lot of other things going on here and now and people want answers. I get it.

None of those answers is gun control, however, as that doesn’t actually impact the criminals.

Lawmakers demanding Congress act are often simply trying to pass the buck because they don’t want to actually address any of the problems that are within their control.


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