Guns are scary.
Maybe not just lying about (however, even then, they are kinda spooky-ish), but in the hands of unsavory individuals who aim to make them do their evil bidding, they are capable of seriously inflicting badness. A can of whoop ass is WAY more frightening when inside of that can is a gun.
These feelings aside, I am a firm believer in the edict, guns don’t kill people, people kill people. I grew up in a house filled with guns where I was taught to respect them, understand them, and not even think about touching them unless my father was with me at the range. He enjoys collecting them and would possibly utilize one in the event of a home invasion, but that situation has never occurred. Thankfully.
They were all purchased legally. He has a permit to carry them, both on his person and concealed. And, both he and my mother are trained by a professional gun shooting trainer person to use the guns both safely and effectively. Oh, and neither of them are crazy. So, there’s that.
Personally, I am not a gun owner. I’m not against the owning of guns, I just have never found an extra $300 bucks lying about to spend on acquiring one. Or, I did and instead, I bought shoes.
Like keeping my kids safe.
A number of recent incidents have served as catalysts to get our lawmakers to seriously scrutinize the current gun laws and consider how they can be written better and enforced more effectively.
As the federal government debates how to go forward without getting all Constitutional, some states are taking matters into their own hands. Maryland, where I live whether I like it or not is one of those states. And, after having a sit down with Governor O’Malley recently, here’s the break-it-on-down-version of Maryland’s gun control initiative.
Real Talk on Gun Control: Let Maryland Be Your Guide
What exactly is the Comprehensive Public Safety Legislative Package?
It’s “an agenda to improve public safety and protect Maryland families that focuses on three principal areas: gun safety, school safety, and improving mental health safeguards and services.”
Okay, gun safety. How will this package prevent bad people from doing bad things?
Already the things the state of Maryland is doing to combat crime is working. One of the state’s strategic goals was to reduce violent crime by 20% by the end of 2012. Um, done, thank you very much. The proposed package includes a ban on all assault weapons, limitations on magazine capacity from 20 rounds to 10, stronger licensing requirements on handgun purchases and restrictions on possession of guns and ammunition.
But, I’m a hunter. I want to hunt!
Word. The state hears you and they are not seeking to take away the sport of hunting or the deliciousness of deer jerky (that’s a tasty treat you shouldn’t have to live without). Hunters can rest assured that the proposed package doesn’t include shotguns and rifles into the licensing requirements of the bill. The aim is huge, mass kill weapons that can take out an entire herd of humans deer at once. No one needs to kill a herd of deer at once. Where’s the fun in that?
Well, I’ve never hunted a day in my life, but the Constitution says that it’s my right to bare arms, and dangit I’m gonna bare them! They can’t take that away from me, can they?
Nope! So long as you are a law abiding citizen (criminals can’t own guns, okay, you just can’t) who is willing to follow the rules (be a certain age and agree to training, fingerprinting, and a more comprehensive background check) you’ll still be able to buy a handgun. Maryland calls these “common-sense” gun safety proposals that will not infringe on the Constitutional rights of law-abiding citizens. Bare away, Marylanders. Bare, away.
How does this help keep crazy people from buying guns, or criminals from getting them illegally?
The proposed bill makes it really hard for a mentally unstable person to acquire a gun through any sort of legal challenge. And, while everyone knows that people who really, really want to break the law are going to go to great lengths to do so, we also know that having laws in place to make it more difficult to be bad work (at least in terms of reducing gun trafficking within a state).
Why do certain groups and people oppose these type of gun regulations?
Partly because they feel that it makes it easy to destroy the 2nd Amendment; a slippery slope to losing the right to bear arms. Like, if we agree to give this up, it’ll be easier to get us to give up the next thing, and the next thing, until it just makes sense to give up some things entirely.
Also, there’s some of that whole anti-big-government thing going on too. Some people just don’t like “The Man” getting all up in their grills to micromanage how they roll, especially if they’re not rolling dirty. Think of it like the government is your mom and dad and you’re a really well behaved teenager. If outta nowhere, your parents get all paranoid and start following you when you go out with your friends, and imposing a bunch of lame rules on your life just because some of your classmates act like jerks, you’d hate that.
Finally, many argue that these kinds of laws don’t get to the root of the problem: people dying from guns and guns being wielded by mentally ill people. Handguns are most often to blame for human deaths and the laws don’t regulate those. Just like having stronger gun laws don’t help mentally ill people get the help they need or prevent them from acquiring a gun illegally.
What are your thoughts on gun control and such?