John King Published 12:46 p.m. ET Feb. 7, 2018
Shooting with a pistol. Man aiming pistol in shooting range. (Photo: Getty Images / iStockphoto)
Once again, Cynthia Tucker gets it all wrong in her piece titled "Congress still ignores gun violence."
The term "gun violence" is a complete misnomer. It is not the gun that is violent, but the person using it. Blaming the gun for violent acts instead of the person using it is like blaming the car for the death caused by the drunk driver.
We need to address better ways to deal with violent criminals, the mentally disturbed and the gang brutality mentality, as stricter gun laws that only burden law-abiding citizens will not fix America's violence problem.
Ms. Tucker is also manipulating numbers and needs to get her polling facts straight. A December 2014 Pew Research poll found support for gun rights increasing and surpassing gun control sentiment, and a late August 2017 poll by The Wall Street Journal and NBC News had the same results.
Column:Look beyond the courts for Second Amendment freedom
Your Turn:Want more talent in the Tier? Increase liberty
Ms. Tucker wrongly maligns the NRA, which does not believe that anyone should be able to buy and own any weapon they want. The NRA defends the Second Amendment for law-abiding citizens to own and bear firearms that are in common use for legal purposes.
Ms. Tucker also gets it completely wrong on the Second Amendment, its history, its intent and what she claims is how the "federal courts have grossly distorted its meaning." Just research the Supreme Court's decision in Heller vs. the District of Columbia to see that the court rightly decided that the amendment does support the right of individuals to bear arms. The court said, "The Amendment's prefatory clause (A well regulated militia …) announces a purpose, but does not limit or expand the scope of the second part, the operative clause (the right of the people …). The operative clause's text and history demonstrate that it connotes an individual right to keep and bear arms."
Ms. Tucker uses Australia's 1996 "gun control" laws as an example of how Australia got a grip on "gun violence," claiming it caused gun deaths to plummet, but new research published in the Journal of Experimental Criminology (link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s11292-017-9313-3) found that "the 1996 Australian national firearm law relies on an empirical model that may have limited ability to identify the true effects of the law." In other words, the research found no statistical evidence that the laws had any impact on firearm homicide trends over the period. She also touts the laws' "buyback program," which is another misnomer. Government cannot buy back what it never owned, and buyback implies voluntary at fair market value. Australia's law was mandatory confiscation (turn it in or go to jail) for a small compensation.
The only rational thinking we seem incapable of is that "gun control" will not solve our violence problem and that some Constitutional amendments are not equal to others. Consider the bad precedent it would set if we started allowing the government to treat the other amendments that protect our God-given freedoms like we are now treating the Second Amendment.
John King is an Owego resident.