French Film Star Illustrates Futility of Nation's Gun Control Laws

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We don't talk much about the gun control laws in France, but not because they're particularly good. They're rather strict and require permission for just about anything you want to buy. There are also limits on how much ammo you can buy.


Now, French actor Alain Delon has played a number of bad guys. That meant guns in the hands, but those were movie guns. They weren't his. After all, he wasn't a bad guy, right?

Well, who knows. I don't know the guy.

We now know, though, that much like some of the parts he played, he wasn't too worried about the law when he wanted something

Police have seized 72 firearms from the home of French screen legend Alain Delon, who doesn’t have a permit for any of them, prosecutors said on Tuesday.

Officers also found more than 3,000 rounds of ammunition and a shooting range in the actor’s rural home in Douchy-Montcorbon, 84 miles (135km) south of Paris.

Delon, 88, “has no authorisation that would allow him to own a firearm”, said local prosecutor Jean-Cédric Gaux.

The star played gun-toting gangsters in several of his most famous films, including Borsalino and is credited with creating the Hollywood trope of the mysterious cerebral hitman in the 1967 film The Samurai.

Delon has been in poor health since a stroke in 2019 and has recently been the centre of an escalating family feud.


At 88 and in poor health, there's really no point in charging the man. 

What's more, despite having a lot of guns and far more ammunition than he's allowed to have under French law, there's no indications he ever did anything to hurt anyone else with any of them.

Yet it's also clear that the laws there didn't do a whole lot to stop him, either. 

Yes, he's a wealthy man and wealthy people can get things others can't, but if gun control works as advertised, why would wealth matter? Illegal is illegal, right?

The truth is, though, if someone wants something badly enough and that something exists, they can get it. If an aging actor can get firearms without the needed permits, why wouldn't criminals? If it's just a matter of money, bad guys can get money too. Sure, your average street thug might not have much, but those higher up the food chain can get them.

Delon didn't really do anything particularly wrong here except fail to ask permission. The right to keep and bear arms is inherent in all of humanity, so he shouldn't have had to jump through such hoops in the first place.


Yet those hoops exist and he figured a way around them easily enough.

Those who would love to see similar laws here in the US either don't think it'll happen here or don't really care so long as the "wrong sort" don't get firearms.

But I assure you that if someone who only played a criminal on the big screen could find a way to get guns, then so could any drug kingpin, mobster, or well-connected bad guy. This is also in a nation surrounded by anti-gun nations, so while the guns might have been smuggled in, it kind of shows that your neighbors having strict gun control doesn't mean you won't have gun show up in your neighborhoods.

I know. Chicago will be devastated to learn that their problems really aren't Indiana's fault, but here we are.

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