Project 21 New Visions

 

Mychal Massie

Anti-Gun Laws Favor Criminals


by Mychal Massie (bio)

On April 3, three Pittsburgh cops were brutally murdered in the line of duty.

Eric Kelly, Stephen Mayhle and Paul Sciullo II were senselessly murdered while responding to a domestic violence call.  Two weeks earlier, four police officers were similarly murdered in Oakland.

It's no surprise that, in the aftermath of such brutality, politicians seized upon these horrific acts of the criminally deranged to create more restrictions on gun ownership.  Some anti-gun groups even want an end to private gun ownership altogether.

Increasing restrictions on or removing firearms from responsible gun owners will not necessarily promote safety.  It sure as heck won't stop violent gun crimes.

At what point, if ever, will anti-gun zealots and the "throw the baby out with the bath water" politicians realize this?  It depends whether they're actually sincere.

Responsible gun owners aren't committing gun crimes.  An AK-47, bazooka or a dozen .357 magnums are no more dangerous in the hands of responsible gun owners than a Rottweiler or pit bull with a loving and responsible pet owners.

There is no greater truism than, "If guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns."  I know dozens of men and women who own and legally carry firearms.  They do not need more restrictions.  They are not the ones committing crimes.  And they are also among the most responsible people I know.

Some are collectors, some are sporting enthusiasts and others own and carry firearms for their personal protection.  Why should they suffer under restrictive bans designed to curb crimes they already abhor?

The corner grocer, bank tellers and law enforcement officers do not fear legitimate, responsible gun owners - they fear criminals with guns.  Legislatures can pass all the anti-gun legislation they want, but criminals will unfortunately still get guns and will still use them.

That's the point.  Lawmakers, urged on by the malevolent cacophony of anti-gun ownership groups, have it backwards.  America doesn't need to further oppress the innocent - they need to direct their energies at getting criminals off the streets.  They need to deglamorize the criminal use of firearms.

Yet critics try to vilify gun owners like others vilify smokers.  This won't end gun crimes.  It certainly won't end the brutal murder of law-enforcement officers who are the line of defense between criminals and the rest of society.

It's also easy for the anti-gun groups to blame conservative commentators for being responsible for gun violence based on their support of the Second Amendment.  This, however, is a crude banausic idiocy based on agenda-driven contempt for any and all who disagree with them.

To that point, how many anti-firearm groups contribute to charities that help the families of slain officers?  How many funerals of the same slain officers have Susan Sarandon, Rosie O'Donnell, Jesse Jackson or Al Sharpton attended?

Mumia Abdul-Jamal is given hero status for supposedly being politically prosecuted for his cold-blooded murder by gun of Philadelphia police officer Daniel Faulkner.  New York undercover officers James Nemorin and Rodney Andrews were murdered execution-style as they tried to rid New York City streets of machine guns and the gang-bangers who possess them.  It's not clear how passing more restrictive laws or taking guns out of the hands of law-abiding citizens would have prevented the murders of these officers.

If legislators and anti-gun groups were serious about reducing - and possibly even ending - gun crimes, they would turn their scorn toward the criminals instead of finding criminality in legal gun ownership.  They would direct their attention toward constructive ways to take guns out of the hands of thugs, gangs and abusive spouses that protects the innocent.

As it is, their efforts are not the solution to gun crimes - they are part of the problem.

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Mychal Massie is the chairman of the black leadership network Project 21. Comments may be sent to [email protected].

Published by The National Center for Public Policy Research. Reprints permitted provided source is credited. New Visions Commentaries reflect the views of their author, and not necessarily those of Project 21 or the National Center for Public Policy Research.


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