Thursday, September 21, 2006

The "Gun Guys," Freedom States Alliance Etc.

I've signed up for various "information" emails from a bunch of anti-gun groups so I can keep track of what's going on from their point of view. There's way too much garbage for me to comment on the farce that these groups partake in on a weekly basis, and most of the gun bloggers out there already know about these idiots. I'm going to make an exception today and post on a couple points, one that is an elaboration of something new in the gun/anti-gun fight. First, though, lets deal with The Gun Guys (actually, just one guy):
One of the arguments we hear time and time again from the gun guys is that "criminals don't follow the law-- that's what makes them criminals." The idea there is that if we pass a gun ban, criminals won't follow the laws we pass any more than the ones that are already in place. Their thinking is that a gun ban law will do no good, because no criminal will ever follow it.

There are a few obvious responses to that one. First, if laws don't stop crime, why do we have a law against murder? Why is it illegal to steal? If criminals don't follow the law, why bother making any laws at all, right?

Of course that's not true. Creating laws creates consequences for actions you don't want to be undertaken. If a gun ban was passed, anyone who chose to use a gun criminally would have even more consequences for that action (currently they're put in danger of their lives, of course-- why anyone would choose to have a gun around is a mystery to us). Would a gun ban law keep criminals from ever using guns? Of course not-- we have laws against theft and that happens all the time. But would it give would-be criminals a bigger incentive to stay away from firearms? You bet.

The other problem with this whole "criminals don't follow laws" argument is that some criminals do have to follow the laws, even when they're helping out crime. Take the junk gun dealers in California that we wrote about today. When they broke the law in California (by selling firearms that didn't meet "safety standards" (though we'd love to see a firearm that meets our "safety standards"-- that doesn't exist), they were forced to close up shop. That's right-- they were criminals, and they were made to follow the law.

Of course, they didn't close up completely. They instead moved to Nevada, where looser laws let them make and sell all the junk guns they want. Which brings us, finally, to the real problem of controlling criminals and their guns. We'll never get criminals to follow gun laws-- if we don't pass the laws in the first place.
Now, I'm going to assume my readers are smart, and hence I won't provide any commentary for that which preceeded this. On the other hand, something interesting is happening in the gun rights debate, it's becoming just that, and that seems to have caught the anti's off guard, and, as reported in none other than the New York Times, is helping our cause.
One group represented at the conference had reason to celebrate: the National Rifle Association, which in the past decade has been refining its own version of globalization. At first, the group openly fought gun control abroad, but that enabled gun-control advocates to accuse local gun lobbies of selling out to America. In Brazil, the N.R.A. tried a new approach. Brazil has the most gun deaths annually of any country, and last October it held a referendum on a nationwide gun ban. In the run-up to the vote, polls suggested that more than 70 percent of Brazilians supported the ban. Then the Brazilian gun lobby, which previously had emphasized the desirability of gun ownership, began running advertisements that instead suggested that if the government could take away the right to own a weapon (though Brazilians have no constitutional right to bear arms), it could steal other civil liberties. This argument took gun-control advocates by surprise, and on voting day, 64 percent of Brazilians voted against the gun ban. “We gun-control groups failed to anticipate this idea of focusing on rights,” admits Denis Mizne of Sou da Paz, a Brazilian public-policy institute. As a report in Foreign Policy revealed, the National Rifle Association lobbyist Charles Cunningham had traveled to Brazil as early as 2003 to impart strategy to local gun advocates, teaching them to emphasize rights instead of weapons.
Interesting. And look, it didn't take long for the other side to change tack. My email from the "Freedom States Alliance (whatever that is) is iluminating
Dear stalin:

Do you know that the NRA lobbies for and backs court cases to allow domestic violence offenders to own guns? And that they also think men who are under restraining orders should be able to pack heat?

And members of the so-called “gun rights” movement also defend the "right" of sex offenders to carry around guns! If you have a hard time believing that, read this recent article from the Freedom States Alliance website, “”

What we have here is not a “gun rights” movement, but a dangerous form of psychosis that puts the safety of women and children in peril.

Indeed, an incident in North Carolina on September 18, dramatically illustrates the bloodshed that comes in the wake of the NRA’s fanaticism:

“A man accused of pushing his way into a domestic violence shelter and killing his estranged wife was being sought today by authorities who believe he fled in a stolen car. John Raymond Woodring is accused of shooting 48-year-old Bonnie Woodring to death Monday night. Sylva police Chief Jeff Jamison said Woodring already was wanted on domestic violence charges for allegedly trying to strangle his wife.”

We wish that we could have saved Bonnie Woodring from a gun lobby that enables killers like her husband. She is another victim of the gun lobby’s extremism.

That is why we will keep working to change America’s understanding about guns, the gun industry, and gun violence – one American at a time, in communities throughout the nation.

Freedom States Alliance
Changing the Way America Thinks About Guns and Securing Our Nation’s Future
Foul bastards! That tripe could not convince a thinking human being. It's pretty clear they've gone to a quantity over quality approach. Lets look at what they've got
We wish that we could have saved Bonnie Woodring from a gun lobby that enables killers like her husband. She is another victim of the gun lobby’s extremism.
The gun lobby had nothing to do with this. Trying to strangle your wife is attempted murder, isn't it? That's a felony. Among the problems with Lautenberg amendment, probably the foremost problem with it, is that it is retroactive. One case I read about, the guy was wrongly acused of domestic abuse, but plead guilty because it was only a misdemeanor, involved no jail time, and avoided an expensive legal defence with an uncertain outcome. Only problem is he didn't know at the time that he would lose his gun rights. Had he known, he would have fought the charges.

Anyway, the interesting thing is that the anti's are trying to get in on the "rights" aspect of the battle. I think they are doing poorly. This should help us, but only time will tell. And with that, I am unlikely to ever attempt a fisk of these nitwits again, it's not worth my time.


Blogger the pistolero said...

Wouldn't most of us (gun folks) argue that domestic violence/sex offenders should, y'know, still be in prison for what they did? I've heard it said that the "rehabilitation" rate for sex offenders is very low, and I know from not-quite-personal experience that wife-beaters don't stop after just one victim...

9/24/2006 2:50 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My favorite part of the whole piece is the name you used to register with the Freedom States Alliance. Classic. I bet you laugh every time you get an email from them...


9/26/2006 1:39 PM  
Blogger carnaby said...

Heh, it's true :)

I used mao to register with the Brady Campaign.

9/26/2006 1:41 PM  

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