Instead of Banning Assault Rifles, How About This? A True Compromise.

Semi-automatics at gun show          In light of the gun debate circling the nation, I’ve decided to further research the mass shootings we’ve had in recent years and the weapons used in these incidents.  After which I’ve reached a sad conclusion. I don’t believe a ban on assault rifles would have much of a positive impact.  There are millions of these semi-automatic weapons already in circulation.  In the shooting that happened at Columbine, a semi-automatic Tec-9 was used. Although banned at the time, this was an older weapon, grandfathered in and considered legal (although it was sold illegally to a minor). On top of this, the previous Federal Assault Weapons Ban had a long list of things that qualified a weapon as illegal. The gun manufactures simply made other weapons that were just as deadly, but still met the federal requirements. This is why I would say that a ban on semi-automatics would have little effect. Instead I have formulated my own proposal that looks to compromise. Helping to deter those who would do harm while still preserving everyone’s 2nd amendment right to own fire arms.

The first part of this plan is in line with what President Obama and Democrats already proposed. It is also something supported by over 3/4ths of the country. Universal Background checks! Currently, background checks are required only for weapons sold by federally licensed gun dealers. Gun showBut 40% of guns are sold at gun shows and through private exchanges that don’t require a background check. If I was a criminal who wanted a gun, I have many legal options of obtaining a weapon by simply going to a private party or gun show. To many others and myself, this seems like the most sensible measure that could be taken to help avoid guns ending up in the wrong hands. Not only should there be background checks for all purchases, but every weapon should be registered, logged and recorded for better tracking if the gun is ever stolen and used in a crime.

I would also add on one further measure. The background check should also be required for ammunition purchases. If most of these killers weren’t able to simply walk into K-mart and pickup a few hundred rounds, with no questions asked, many lives may have been saved. If you are a legitimate, law-abiding citizen, there should be no room for concern here. The Universal Background Check is the single biggest measure that can be taken to help curb gun violence without denying people their right to own and operate a gun.

Then there is the assault weapon ban. Like I previously stated, I don’t believe a ban on these weapons would do much to curb violence. Instead I offer up a different idea. Rather than banning these weapons altogether, we simply require an extra permit for those who want to own and operate these weapons.weapons permit It’s the same kind of permit as the Concealed Weapon Permit. This would help to further ensure that people who have these weapons are safe, responsible individuals. Again this doesn’t infringe on the right to own a semi-automatic gun. This should apply to all semi-automatic weapons: new purchases and for people who already own these weapons.

As for the issue concerning high capacity magazines, (the idea of limiting the number of bullets allowed in a gun clip), I would apply the same idea of obtaining the necessary permit. Let’s say 7 bullets are allowed for the average handgun and anything more requires an additional permit. It’s the same as our driving laws. If you drive a semi-truck you need a special Commercial Drivers license. Then in addition there are endorsements. If you want to drive a bus with a certain number of passengers, you need a special endorsement. If you are going to drive hazardous materials, again you need a separate endorsement.

These two issues alone; the universal background check and special permits for assault weapons and high capacity magazines can help deter those who would use weapons to harm others, while protecting everyone’s right to own a gun.

Law enforcementFinally, no law or regulation will be effective unless it can be enforced. In order for the background check system and permit laws to be effective, the ATF needs to be empowered to make sure gun dealers and their sales are applying the proper background checks. Also the database itself needs to be accurate and updated, which will take people and resources. It should be a coordinated effort with law enforcement, to make sure these weapons are being sold and used properly. What good are laws if you can’t enforce them?

Part of enforcing and deterring gun violence is proper punishments for those who break the law. I don’t mean just for the killers themselves (there are already punishments for murderers, and as we’ve seen, many of them don’t care about being punished). If it is found that a gun dealer improperly sold a weapon without the necessary background checks or permits, then they should be held liable if the weapon is used in a crime. The same logic applies for gun owners. Strict punishments should be enacted for gun owners who are found negligent, allowing their weapon to be used by someone else in a crime.  It is important for those who deal and use weapons to understand and respect the responsibility that comes along with their rights.

Nothing I’ve mentioned here prevents law-abiding citizen from owning guns. What it does do, is look to keep weapons out of the wrong hands by having a complete record of gun sales and holding people accountable for the use and distribution of these weapons.

Do you like the ideas listed here? Then please make sure to share with friends, family and more importantly, your government representatives.  Like people have correctly stated, “You can’t legislate morality.” So does that mean we should do nothing?Enough is enough

4 thoughts on “Instead of Banning Assault Rifles, How About This? A True Compromise.

  1. I’m with you on the Patriot Act. No greater assault to our Bill of Rights, by the Federal government, has ever taken place. Our right to privacy and right to due process were seriously handicapped. What is frustrating, is neither of these seemed to be a problem for those of us self-identifying as conservatives, when the previous administration enacted these policies. However, when the current administration extended these policies, we all suddenly began screaming “tyranny!” As far as “covert government organizations,” I’m a little dubious. Not that they couldn’t, or don’t exist, but how can we certain and aware of them if they are indeed covert? Further, how have either of these made our rights to a well regulated militia under free elections all but decimated?

    On the left, we have an uneducated public, and an uneducated media, woefully lacking in firearms knowledge, operating primarily on emotion. On the right, we have an uneducated public, and an uneducated media, woefully lacking in knowledge of how our government actually works, operating primarily on emotion. “Us-Against-Them, We’re Right/They’re Wrong” is a multi-billion dollar business. A handful of people are making a lot of money by convincing us our fellow Americans are the problem. Ideological positions, and agendas, long in place before this latest “debate” began, are opportunistically being argued, if not exploited, in lieu of a rational discussion of what, or what not, needs to be done.

    An AR ban won’t have any affect on gun violence, while universal background checks aren’t an “attack” on our 2nd Amendment. The truth, and a solution, lie somewhere in the middle. Nothing meaningful nor productive will begin to take place until those that incite emotion are told to stand down.

  2. These ideas have merit for “control” but not of mass murder…increased control of freedom, power for the few and an open door for the development of increases in power (for the very real probability) of rogue government under the auspices of the unpatriotic Patriot Act and associated branches of covert government already in place. Put the axe to the root problem, federal power usurping the rights Constitutionally belonging to local authorization of the people’s will by original means; well regulated militia (within the Union under free elections, which all has been decimated).

    • I’m with you on the Patriot Act. No greater assault to our Bill of Rights, by the Federal government, has ever taken place. Our right to privacy and right to due process were seriously handicapped. What is frustrating, is neither of these seemed to be a problem for those of us self-identifying as conservatives, when the previous administration enacted these policies. However, when the current administration extended these policies, we all suddenly began screaming “tyranny!” As far as “covert government organizations,” I’m a little dubious. Not that they couldn’t, or don’t exist, but how can we certain and aware of them if they are indeed covert? Further, how have either of these made our rights to a well regulated militia under free elections all but decimated?

      On the left, we have an uneducated public, and an uneducated media, woefully lacking in firearms knowledge, operating primarily on emotion. On the right, we have an uneducated public, and an uneducated media, woefully lacking in knowledge of how our government actually works, operating primarily on emotion. “Us-Against-Them, We’re Right/They’re Wrong” is a multi-billion dollar business. A handful of people are making a lot of money by convincing us our fellow Americans are the problem. Ideological positions, and agendas, long in place before this latest “debate” began, are opportunistically being argued, if not exploited, in lieu of a rational discussion of what, or what not, needs to be done.

      An AR ban won’t have any affect on gun violence, while universal background checks aren’t an “attack” on our 2nd Amendment. The truth, and a solution, lie somewhere in the middle. Nothing meaningful nor productive will begin to take place until those that incite emotion are told to stand down.

      • As a self identifying unaffiliated post partisan progressive, the assault of the Patriot Act and its extension into the current administration were and are equally disturbing, especially in the context of the monetized hijacking of elections that have decimated the democratic process, along with the transitions, over many decades, resulting in a federalized military system, replete with covert agencies, effectively without accountability to citizens.
        Education and journalistic integrity are certainly the prescription for dissolution of the “us and them” regressive mentality that feeds those sensationalistic opportunists dividing citizens, rather than promoting unity toward a more perfect union. The main source of fear remains secrecy within governance and military control. Information is powerful, for good and for evil purposes.
        Background checks are not necessarily an “attack” until and unless that info is not kept in an encrypted form, inaccessible by the gov’t for purposes of controlling/dominating citizens (especially when it is clear there are many unaccountable US military agencies operating domestically and globally).
        Until the root issues of election reform and restoration of military control to local militia (instead of unaccountable federal domination) to reinstate democracy at its elemental level, all gov’t has, by definition, gone rogue.
        Emotions (and its usurpers) cloud the issues and divide while journalistic integrity in media and promotion of educating people in the knowledge of how to learn, in every academic discipline, is progressive…but cannot occur efficaciously under “rogue” gov’t with any credibility. Journalism becomes propaganda and education, inculcation.
        Solutions are not necessarily found “somewhere in the middle” but are able to be located in a reinstatement of the framers recommendations for checks on authority in governance that places priority on citizen rights, established by the framers using the transcendent principles they knew would lead to a more perfect union. Exploitations of opportunists and the stirrings of emotionality will be easily identified in comparison to the balance of sources of wisdom like the framing documents and other wisdom resources compiled over millennia. As one such source cited, “there is nothing new under the sun.” The roots of fear are evident and further cooperation with unaccountability in governance is antithetical to alleviating fears. Gun rights advocacy is a last vestige of resistance to unaccountability and is reasonable, recommended by the Framers and further gun control efforts do not address the roots of fear and issues projected by mental illness and violence, IMHO.
        Thank you for seeking reason and rationality.