Gun Control Debate: Navy Yard Shooting Another Poor Excuse For More Laws
The left is falling all over itself to demand more gun control laws after the most recent mass shooting at the Washington, D.C., Navy Yard which left 13 people dead including the shooter. Yet, D.C. is home to some of the strictest gun control laws in the nation. The shooter apparently lawfully purchased a shotgun in neighboring Virginia, then brought it with him to the D.C. Navy Yard where he opened fire.
Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) held a press conference after the shooting, reporting that “the killer was armed with an AR-15, a shotgun and a semiautomatic pistol.” She said, “This is one more event to add to the litany of massacres that occur when a deranged person or grievance killer is able to obtain multiple weapons — including a military-style assault rifle — and kill many people in a short amount of time.”
Feinstein championed the 1994 Assault Weapons Ban in Congress, and would like to see it brought back again. However, it turned out she was wrong about the killer and the AR-15, as well as the pistol. He did not own an AR-15 or pistol; he illegally took them off the bodies of those he killed, including a security guard who was carrying the pistol for his job.
Is she implying that law enforcement should not be allowed to carry weapons, since the wrong people might take them from them?
In situations where AR-15s are involved, the media doesn’t even refer to them correctly. The media usually labels them “AR-15-style assault rifles.” But AR-15s are not the same thing as assault rifles. AR-15 stands for ArmaLite Rifle, named after the company that first developed it in the 1950s. AR-15s are little more than fancy looking rifles that citizens may own. “Assault rifle” refers to military weapons, generally fully automatic rifles available only to the military. The media deliberately confuses the two in order to scare the public into thinking civilians are using fully automatic weapons – which have been banned for civilian use since 1934.
The left is currently clamoring to ban AR-15s, not shotguns. In fact, Vice President Joe Biden recently said that Americans should own a shotgun for self-protection, explaining that he and his wife do.
Yet again, a senseless mass shooting took place within a part of the country that has the strictest gun control laws in the nation. It was followed by another ignorant outcry about what guns were used and what guns should be banned. If anything, this has been another brutally clear reminder that gun control laws do not work. Studies show that, “In the United States and the rest of the developed world, total murder and suicide rates, from all causes, do not increase with rates of gun ownership — or drop under tougher gun laws.”
This explains why support for gun control has been waning, from 57% in 1993 when President Clinton took office, down to 39% under President Obama. In recent years, the left has been unable to get much gun control legislation passed, even by launching it after emotionally charged shooting incidents. Two senators in Colorado who spearheaded four gun control bills after the movie theater shooting were recalled in elections earlier this month, in the first ever recall election in the state.
What happened at the D.C. Navy Yard was a tragedy, and instead of exploiting it to call for more gun control laws, liberals should think long and hard about whether their gun control laws are endangering peoples' lives.