Thursday, September 14, 2006

Canada and Convertibles

I'll rave first, then I'll rant.

I am so grateful I now own a convertible. The weather goddess must know I have my dream car, because she has been smilin' down on me. Beautiful, sunny, cool mornings, followed by sunny warm afternoons, and then cool evenings. Perfect, absolutely perfect convertible waether. I know I said this before, but it does bear repeating, I am in Automotive Heaven !!!

OK, now the Rant.

Canada has positively draconian gun control laws. Their rationale seems to be, if we take guns away from all the citizens, and make them very, very hard to get, then only the criminals will have guns and we can then identify the criminals and arrest them.

Well, that's a very good theory. But there's a huge, honking flaw in that theory.
Usually the way the police discover a criminal HAS a gun is when he/she USES said gun !!! Like in a, say RAMPAGE KILLING. Sure, the police happened to be on campus. That, my friends, was luck. The first officer who fired on one of the shooters, from a distanse of three {3} yards, MISSED.
I'm not saying I could do better. Most of my target practice is done at still targets. But police officers are trained to a higher level of competency, or should be.
Let me posit a different scenario. What if, just suppose, instead of a "Gun Free Zone" as so many College and University campuses are, in Canada and the US, every 10th student was carrying a legally concealed handgun? And let's supppose that in order to obtain a Concealed Handgun License a citizen has to be 21 years old, pass a criminal history background check, submit their fingerprints for comparison through the AFIS system, attend an 8 hour classroom course, pass a written test on the law, safety, anger management, and alternative methods of dispute resolution, and pass a firearm proficiency test.

Now, do you think there would still be 2 dead killers, 4 dead innocent victims, and 20 innocent hospitalized patients with gunshot wounds ?
I bloody well don't ! I think there would still be 2 dead killers, and there probably would still be at least 2 dead innocent victims. But once armed students were aware of a deadly threat in their midst, they would have defended themselves and their fellow students against that threat.

You see, guns are a tool, just like hammers, or drills, or a paintbrush, or a needle, or whatever tools you use in your trade. It's not the tool that is evil. It is the wielder of the tool, it is the intent with which that tool is used.

Use your tool for good, use your tool to put food on the table, or to protect yourself or your family, or an innocent.



G Bro said...

Well, I couldn't find any recent data - mostly stuff from the 1990's. What I did found was that generally, more guns correlates to more gun deaths. More sticks, on the other hand ........

I don't know if the data has been filtered to reach those conclusions, but here are some sources:

(i) the US appears to have a gun-related death rate that is 2 - 4 x that of Canada (30 x England, 280 x Japan, ...),

(ii) a Canadian study showed a 1:1 correlation between % of households with guns and number of per capita gun deaths

(iii) Texas came in a surprising 26th among the states in per capita gun deaths (although the top 10 were deep south/wild west states).

HollyB said...

Funny, G, but in all the states that have passed Concealed Carry laws, the crime rates have actually fallen, especially the violent crime rates and the crimes against women. Have you read "More Guns, Less Crime" by John Lott?

Criminals will ALWAYS find a way to have guns. Stricter gun laws only keep guns out of the hands of law abiding citizens.

G Bro said...

No, but I'll look into it. I have a copy of Lott's 68-page paper but haven't read through it yet. (Whew!) I found it and other references here:

It's possible that we are both right: more guns in a society correlates to more gun deaths, but more CCW licenses means more deterrent.

I saw a story last week about a wheelchair-bound lady in Harlem who was mugged while going down the street. He grabbed her necklace, she shot him in the elbow with a licensed .357. I cheered that one.

phlegmfatale said...

My mind always casts back to that slaughter in the Luby's in Killeen - if someone had been packing, they could have taken out the murderous lunatic and saved many lives. I'm glad we have the right to carry now - it just makes good sense, and anyone who says banning guns prevent things like this murderous rampage in a Canadian college is living in a state of denial.

G Bro said...

I read and thought about Holly's premise again (age limit, fingerprints, background check, classroom, written test, proficiency test, ...), and in my book that IS a form of gun control.

Lloyd Bentsen once said of his father, "Daddy's idea of gun control is a steady hand."