I own a lot of guns. Think of all your friends with guns and then add them all together and I probably own more. Some are for hunting, some for collecting, and some are just because I like to own them and shoot them. I am a collector and an ameteur tinkerer and I also train extensively to be able to use my weapons efficiently should I need to. Six of my rifles would be considered military style assault weapons. And thinking about it now, except for shooting on saturdays, I can't think of a single reason to own them except for defending my home from a horde. I can imagine social unrest that could drive people who are unprepared to try and take from those who are prepared so I prepare for it.
I have not thought once of giving up a single gun in the name of public safety but I have looked at why I own them to find an analogy to explain why they can't be taken. The best one I can come up with is the automobile. There is no greater public menace than the automobile. Cars kill many time more people than guns do. The most regular contributing factor is speed. Now speed limits, except in the lovely Republic of Texas, never really exceed 70 to my knowledge so why are cars permitted to be built that will drive faster. I own an SRT8 that will go nearly 200 miles per hour. Vehicles can cause, and regularly do, great death and property destruction and they require no background checks and are found at every single school every day.
So who is to say that soccer mom X is divorcing cheating dad Y and has a breakdown one day at school because she spies him picking up their children with another women in the car. In a blind moment's fit of rage she revs her engine and blasts across a busy parking lot into her cheating husband's car. The violent collision not only takes out the cheater and his mistress but her two kids and six others who were trying to make it to their vehicles. Would the left scream for stricter vehicle control laws? Would vehicle owners and soccer moms be excoriated by the media for not caring about children's safety?
Here's a non-theoretical argument that happened 10 miles from me. A woman was arrested for assault near a school because she used her vehicle to push through a crowd of unruly students who regualrly blocked the road while heading to school and wouldn't permit cars to pass safely. One day she just became fed up with the behavior of the students and pushed her way through rather than wait for the students to let her pass.Using her vehicle as a weapon she threatened them to get them to do what she wanted and had she slipped on the accelerator by accident she could have floored and taken out the entire group. So should cars no longer be permitted around children? Should parents have to report the number of cars and their top speed to their kids' physicians as part of ObamaCare? Children are many times more likely to be hurt in a car than by a gun.
My wife is reading over my shoulder and asked, "What about dogs?" More children are killed by dogs than by guns. She is so smart and beautiful;)
So what is my solution to protect children and others from loonies with guns? Well you have to keep loonies from getting guns, not keep everyone from getting certain guns. Stopping everyone from buying or owning, or even handing down their weapons to their children, is just like telling ford that they can only built cars with a maximum speed of 70 MPH. Well, I have a multipart plan but I require some concessions from the left in order to implement them.
1) Drug testing for all semi-auto pistols with magazines greater than 7, semi-auto rifles, and shotguns that hold more than 3 rounds. This drug test can be performed once a year and those who pass will be issued a card that would be presented to an FFL at the time of a gun transfer. The test would make sure that people who are using drugs cannot own weapons. It will also look for drugs like Clonipin and other anti-psychotics to be sure people taking these drugs would require further screening.
How can you stop mentally ill people from getting guns? Test for the drugs they are prescribed. I would go so far as to say Ritalin and all of today's "happy drugs" like Zoloft should be tested for. Now, if someone is determined to have any substance in their system that would indicate they have something they can't control mentally they will require a longer "process" to get a restricted gun. But once this process determines they are not a threat, even if they were to come off their meds abruptly, then they would be issued the same card the nonuser is issued. It is pretty easy to diagnose bi-polar and many other personality disorders based on the drugs in their system. They should not have guns without a deeper look into their illness.
You can also not be caught with a restricted gun without this card.
In exchange every single person recieving public assistance has to go through the same process and prove they are drug free before they get my tax dollars to help further their habits.
2) Close the Gun Show loophole. I think that is a stupid statement but there is one ounce of truth to it. Guns are sold every day between individuals forever breaking the means by which guns are traced if used in criminal activities. If my WASR-10 is stolen and two months later used in a crime, the authorities do not automatically know that it is mine. They have to go back to the original manufacturer and follow the trail of transfers to me. Then the cops know that it was transferred to me on X date by an FFL and get my information from him.
Now if they show up at my house, I would show them the police report where I reported it stolen. What if I had sold the gun three months earlier? I can't really prove that and I will likely go to jail. Well, not me. I have sold, traded, or gifted 5 guns to other people and every time I have done it I have gotten a copy of the person's driver's license and kept the serial number of the weapon. That way when they show up I can give them the name and address of the weapon's new owner. As I am writing this I am thinking that perhaps a set of fingerprints would be a good idea too. It would further protect me and the new owner if they were indeed innocent.
Well I think this is how all person to person transfers should be done. Maybe the buyer should have a copy of the sellers ID as well. You should have to prove where you got a gun from if it is a restricted gun.
Persons selling guns to others outside of the system should face all of the penalties that would be faced by an FFL should they improperly transfer a gun without proper documentation. Person to person transfers would also require the drug test card to be part of the transaction. Now there is still the anonymity of not using an FFL but if a weapon is ever found that can be traced to you, you had better be able to document who it went to and that you did at least the minimum due diligence of making sure they had one little card before you gave them the gun.
In exchange restrictions on owning class 3 and above weapons and components will be eased. I do believe that oversight of certain items is required but the process to get a silencer, SBR, or automatic weapons components are ridiculous and take way too long. I also believe it should be taken out of the federal government's hands and done by the state.
3) All my South Carolina buddies are going to scoff at this but I hate how easy it is to get a conceal carry permit in South Carolina. SC has some very leniant laws in regards to guns as it is. You can carry one in your car chambered and ready go and conceal it from your house, work, hotel room to your car and back. We have the Castle Doctrine, Alter Ego laws, and legislation that protects the person defending themselves rather than the criminal in case of a shooting.
I believe in order to carry a handgun in your car ready to fire that you should have to pass what is now the conceal weapons course. To give you a quick overview, the first part of the course is the NRA pistol safety course. The second part goes over the legal aspects of using your weapon in our state and where you can and cannot carry. The third part is the shooting test where you are only required to get 35 out of 50 rounds into the silhouette of the target from different distances to qualify. I can do this with a sling shot.
So what is wrong with making sure people know how to use their gun and when they can legally do it before they can keep it in their car ready to be used at a moments notice?There is no record kept that you passed the course except the certificate that you keep in your vehicle saying so. What is wrong with making sure people know the cardinal rules of gun ownership and that they can at least hit a 3ft x 2 ft target at 15 yards before they can have a weapon with them most of the time without a SLED background check? Perhaps a hunters safety course can be used as a substitute for but people need to know guns and understand the consequences and responsibilities before they take it out of their home.
In exchange guns will not have to be concealed from your vehicle to your destination. This would make the weapon more accessible for defense and would also act as a deterrent to a likely criminal attack.
If you are a gunowner and serious about it, I would take the course just to know the laws even if you don't apply for the permit. Yes, you can do that. Then the state cannot prove that you know the rules if you are ever in a legal shooting situation and be able to use it in a prosecutorial manner. If you think I am full of crap check this out.
One of my best friends teaches these classes. I have been through it many times because I like to help him with the classes and I bring him many people because I want everyone I know to be lawful gun-toting citizens. One of the people i brought in for the class one day brought a friend with them who was about a 60 year old woman. She had recently purchased a huge 357 magnum revolver for self defense. Well, you would think this is someone who would be a good candidate for a CWP. Well, turns out she had never even fired a gun before and paid way too much for the awesome firepower she had acquired. Whoever sold her that gun should be kicked in his ass.
Either way, in our state, this lady with no firearms experience at all can legally have this gun ready to use in her car and between her car and home or other accommodation without ever knowing how to use it. She is the exact kind of person who needed to take this class and the exact kind of person who does not need to have it on her person concealed. When it came tiem to qualify at the range we told her she should go and practice a lot and she was not permitted to actually qualify for the CWP. My buddy is law enforcement and takes arming people very seriously, as do I. I told her I would take her to the range and help her become proficient with her gun. I actually told her to trade that gun for something that fit her.
My wife passed the CWP class and has a permit but I don't permit her to conceal carry. I have taught her situational awareness so that she knows when to get it ready but she has not trained like me to have the muscle memory to react to a threat in such a manner not to find herself dead by her own gun. I have fired more than 3000 rounds through my primary sidearm and my Springfield XD-9 is like an extension of my body when it comes out. This brings me to my next point.
4) In order to conceal carry I believe that a tactical course with live situational training should be required. There are companies who do extended CWP classes that teach and practice things like concealment and cover and other tactics that would prevent you from becoming a victim should you pull your weapon. Come on man... If you are going to be walking through Wal-Mart with 15 rounds strapped to your side, wouldn't you want to be well practiced? Wouldn't you want to be able to do the right thing at the right moment as muscle reflex rather than having to think about it? Wouldn't you want to make sure you aren't the one in jail or bankruptcy because you reacted poorly to a perceived threat?
In exchange for taking this extended course all restrictions are lifted on where you can carry. For instance, as a CWP holder I cannot carry in government buildings, hospitals, churches, and schools.
Just so you know, I have carried a weapon on my person or within arms reach for over 10 years and not one time have I produced it in defense of myself or others. I have been involved in 2 situations where I could have killed a man in self-defense but the situations worked themselves out in other means. I am not gungho about anything much at all but as a realist I see legislation and gun rules coming. Even our own sheriff recently said that even though he would never infringe on the 2nd Amendment rights of his constituency, he see a real need for measures to keep guns out of the wrong people's hands.
I am also for keeping guns out of the wrong person's hands but before I can give up any of my freedoms or put myself through further scrutiny concessions will have to be made to make laws and enforcement more sensible. And if government is going to spend another dollar or take more from me for enforcement they had better show that they will cut back on spending to facilitate other criminal activity. I assure you a lot of welfare spending facilitates criminal activity and much of it is fraudulently acquired anyway.