Another Example of Why Gun Control Doesn't Matter

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Gun control, we're told, is an essential tool in combatting violent crime. In fact, it's often presented as if it's the only way to fight violent crime.

We, however, have maintained that it doesn't work that way, that criminals don't obey laws in the first place, so how can gun control work to reduce violent crime?

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But let's say, just for the sake of argument, that criminals could be prevented from obtaining firearms through gun laws. Would that make anyone safer?

Not really.

As a case in Connecticut--a state with very strict gun control laws--illustrates, those inclined to do bad things will still find a way to do bad things.

A man arrested in a Wal-Mart in Wallingford last week allegedly bit a police officer after he was found with multiple blades and a flare gun modified to shoot glass shards and shrapnel.

Officers to the Wal-Mart on North Colony Road last Tuesday responded around 6 p.m. on an unwanted person complaint and found 32-year-old Tyler Dowd of Meriden allegedly concealing price tags to items he was taking off of shelves, according to the Wallingford Police Department.

During the incident, police said Dowd was allegedly found with a modified flare gun capable of firing shards of glass and shrapnel, as well as a fixed blade and a foldable pocket knife.

Dowd was charged with three counts of violation of a protective order, two counts of resisting arrest, and a single count each of carrying a dangerous weapon as well as a charge of assault on a police officer after biting the officer.

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Yeah, this sounds like a wonderful human being you'd love to bring over for a cookout.

Note, however, that none of those charges are firearm charges. That's because a flare gun isn't treated like a firearm under the law. They're treated very differently and for perfectly valid reasons. A flare gun is for signaling for help, not defending your life. But it can be used as a weapon even without any supposed modifications.

So what's to stop other people from doing the same thing? What's to prevent other people with ill intentions from using things like flare guns to terrorize people and commit violent crimes?

Nothing. Nothing at all.

Guns are a favored tool of the criminal, but they're adaptable. They won't suddenly give up their criminal ways simply because they can't get their hands on a gun. They simply find a way around the issue. Often, knives are a popular alternative, but some folks are creative.

Look at Europe, for example. Their criminals modify non-functioning gun replicas to become functional firearms. Others build guns from hardware store parts. Regardless, they don't change simply because of gun control.

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If you want to stop violent crime, you've got to stop people. That's where the problem always lies.

Unfortunately, that doesn't bring in big donations or get you a special office in the White House, now does it? 

There's a reason why many gun rights advocates figure gun control has never been about violent crime but about control. It's about disarming us and no one else. I'd like to say that's not the case, at least for most gun control advocates--they simply bought into the hype, after all--but if a guy will modify a flare gun, then why should I believe me giving up my gun rights will somehow keep me safe?

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