People form all kinds of opinions on topics they don’t really understand. This isn’t all that unusual and, if we’re being honest, we all do it to some degree or another. That’s especially true if we’ve only been given media reports from which to form an opinion. We see it all the time with regard to guns.
But where people run into problems is when they decide to speak authoritatively about a topic they know remarkably little about.
That’s pretty much what I ran into this op-ed recently. It’s written by a vocational school student, so a legal adult, and not a kid–which will become relevant later–but this is what our schools are churning out.
We need stricter gun laws in America. The amount of school shootings has gotten out of control. Even though the constitution allows you to have a gun does not mean you should have one. The Second Amendment is the right to keep and bear arms. In 1791 when it was ratified, the most powerful gun was a flintlock musket. The musket lets you shoot once, maybe twice in a minute if you are skilled. When the founding fathers wrote the Second Amendment, they didn’t imagine the creation of semi-automatics and large magazines.
You know, people keep saying this and I keep pointing out how I’m unconvinced by this claim. First, while it’s unlikely the Founding Fathers universally saw the exact form firearm advancement would make, they had ample reason to believe firearms would advance significantly.
That’s because contrary to the author’s claim here, repeating firearms were known to our Founding Fathers. From the Puckle gun, to the Girardoni air rifle, repeating arms were a thing and so there’s little reason to believe the men who penned the Second Amendment clearly didn’t intend for repeating arms to be included despite the fact that, well, they could have said so since they weren’t unknown.
The AR-15 is a gun that can shoot forty-five bullets in a minute. However, not everyone has an AR-15, most people have a pistol. The Glock 18 can shoot 1,200 rounds per minute, that’s a maximum of 33 rounds in less than 3 seconds, which is much more than one round per minute.
First, while an AR-15 might be able to shoot that fast, the human operating it isn’t likely to be able to aim and fire that quickly. That’s an easy mistake to make, though, so I’m not going to beat up the author too much.
I will about the Glock 18, though.
First, the Glock 18 isn’t going to have 1,200 rounds per minute to shoot. There are no magazines that will let it fire that much.
But that’s OK, because the Glock 18 isn’t exactly sitting on your gun store shelves. That’s a full-auto model of the Glock handgun and has it came out in 1986, it’s not likely to be in private hands at all because of the 1986 machine gun ban.
Now, I’m going to assume its inclusion here is an act of ignorance versus blatant lying, but that’s because I’m trying to be generous.
Like myself, many children of all ages are afraid to go to school due to the increased number of school shootings. I was scrolling through social media and a video popped up about Abby Zwerner. The video was about her working as a first grade teacher when one of her students brought a gun to school and shot her. It had been reported to the administration that the child was in possession of the gun three separate times that day.
The administration didn’t do anything about the accusations. Later that day, Abby was shot; the bullet went through her hand and got lodged in her upper chest.
So, as we see, this is someone who has been taught by the media that they’re likely to die at school and they’re citing the very strange case out of Newport News. We’ve talked about that case multiple times, including the fact that the mother has been sentenced for breaking federal gun control laws and is currently waiting for sentencing on state charges she’s already pled guilty to.
Yet the author here ignores this.
Like so many other anti-gunners, he simply skims until he finds something to be outraged about and never bothers to look any deeper. What’s more, he’s hoping you won’t look any deeper.
And this isn’t the only incident, either.
A few countries such as Australia and Ireland have rarely experienced incidences of gun violence. Australia had a mass shooting at Port Arthur in 1996. The massacre killed 35 people and injured 25 others. After the shooting, the Prime minister remodeled the gun laws in Australia.
Now in Australia you must have a license. You must have a safe place to store your gun and take a safety course. To get a license you also need to have a good reason, a few listed are Hunting, Animal Welfare, and Occupation, however self-defense is not included. They do not believe that self-defense is a good enough reason to keep a gun.
After the prime minister set these new laws there haven’t been any mass shootings. Other acts of gun violence have remained very minimal.
Which I’m sure makes the four victims killed in the Darwin, Australia shooting spree in 2019 feel so much better. Or the seven people killed that 2018 in Osmington. Or the two police officers and one other gunned down last year in Wieambilla.
See, that was a talking point bandied about for years by anti-gunners and simply regurgitated here, but the truth of the matter is that so much of the anti-gun rhetoric we see pushed in op-eds and on social media is driving by ignorance.
The truth of the matter is that so many of the claims pushed are easily debunked. The issue is that most in the media don’t bother to look any deeper than this writer did.