New Jersey Democrat Wants To Increase Penalties For Trying To Obtain Guns Illegally

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H/T Bearing Arms.

Instead of passing new gun laws just enforce the ones on the books now.

Folks on this side of the gun debate tend to point out that there are already laws on the books to keep guns out of criminal hands, they only need to be enforced. People on the other side tend to ignore that and want to create even new laws that can be ignored.

However, a Democrat in New Jersey is making a proposal that’s probably not going to send gun rights activists into a frenzy. Don’t believe me? I don’t mind, I wouldn’t believe me either.

But it’s true.

You see, he wants to up the penalties for laws already in place.

State Sen. Troy Singleton has introduced two gun bills to increase the punishment of people who either steal guns or illegally solicit someone to purchase a firearm for them.

Singleton, D-7th of Palmyra, introduced the measures Monday, saying they send a message of “zero tolerance” to criminals who attempt to illegally obtain a gun in New Jersey.

His first bill would make it a third-degree crime punishable by between three and five years in prison to solicit another to buy a gun for someone disqualified from possessing or purchasing one.

These types of “straw purchases” are a common tactic of gun traffickers, who are frequently the source of firearms used in crimes in New Jersey.

During the first quarter of 2018, 77 percent of the guns recovered from crimes in New Jersey were traced and found to have come from another state, according to the New Jersey State Police.

In addition, the legislation mandates that the penalty for soliciting a straw purchase cannot be merged with the penalty for a related or unrelated crime.

Of all the proposals I’ve seen come out of New Jersey, this is one I don’t mind.

Not that I expect it to make a damn bit of difference. After all, part of the problem we currently have isn’t a lack of penalties but a lack of enforcement as a whole. Adding penalties won’t matter unless people are actually prosecuted.

If this were to accompany stricter enforcement, then so much the better. Otherwise, it’s a waste of time.

But, as wastes of time focused on “gun crime” go, it’s hardly the worst one. After all, we all tend to agree that we don’t want armed criminals. We also tend to agree that criminals get guns from one of two places. They either get them through straw purchases or they obtain stolen guns, either by stealing them themselves or by buying them off the black market.

This proposal takes aim at both of those while doing nothing to hurt law-abiding gun owners.

Frankly, this is what we’ve been asking for. I’m amazed that it’s come from a Democrat, truth be told, but it is what it is.

However, I’d also advise state Sen. Singleton to also make sure this measure goes hand-in-hand with the strict prosecution of those who try to buy guns through straw purchases. If that happens, it will do a fair bit to help on that front.

I’m not sure there’s much you can do to stop people from stealing guns, truth be told, but I can at least appreciate the effort.


Women Gathered on Capitol Hill to Promote Gun Rights

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H/T AmmoLand.

The drive by media will give little or no coverage to these women being on Capitol Hill but the drive bys would be all over Shannon Watts and her band of harpies.


WASHINGTON DC – -( The DC Project completed its annual trip to the nation’s Capitol this past week. More than 50 women and girls in 11 teams met with members of Congress over 4 days. This marks the third year for the women to meet with their legislators to reveal their stories and safeguard their Second Amendment rights.

The DC Project is a nonpartisan initiative to bring 50 women, one from each state, to Washington to dispel common myths and garner support for gun rights. The project is the brainchild of Dianna Muller, retired law enforcement officer turned professional 3-gun competitor, who just represented the USA in the IPSC World Shotgun match, where she brought home individual silver and team gold medals. In 2016 Muller met with her legislator and wanted to encourage other women to do the same, so she asked colleagues in the shooting community to join her.

Robyn Sandoval, Executive Director of A Girl & A Gun Women’s Shooting League, has joined Muller on all three trips to DC.

“When women and students make demands against our freedoms, it is important that our legislators know that those protestors do not speak for everyone,” says Sandoval.

“We have more women than ever before wanting to exercise their Second Amendment rights to protect themselves and their families. We have youth who are dedicated to their marksmanship sports. Our lawmakers need to know our stories.”

Each DC Project delegate funded her own trip in this truly grassroots initiative.

Participants’ schedules included meetings with Senate and House members and staffers, networking gatherings, and a rally on the U.S. Capitol grounds, featuring legendary advocate Dick Heller, 16-year-old Beth Walker of Indiana, 15-year-old Chloe Deaton of Florida, and Virginia House Delegate Nick Freitas. The schedule also included two range days for members of Congress and staff to meet with DC Project instructors to experience the culture of the shooting community and learn more about firearms.

Learn more at

A Girl & A Gun Women's Shooting LeagueAbout A Girl & A Gun

A Girl & A Gun (AG & AG) is a membership organization whose events have been successful stepping stones for thousands of women into the shooting community and fostered their love of shooting with caring and qualified instructors to coach them. AG & AG breaks barriers for women and girls in the area of self-defense and in pistol, rifle, and shotgun shooting sports by welcoming beginners to learn the basics of safe and accurate shooting and providing experienced shooters with advanced-level opportunities. The club has more than 5,500 members in 48 states and hosts recurring Girl’s Nights Out at more than 160 ranges throughout the nation.

Miami Beach Police Detain Legal Open Carriers, Chill First Amendment

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H/T AmmoLand.

The city of Miami Beach police have always been pretty badge heavy and enjoyed pushing people around.


Arizona -( On June 24, at about 10 a.m. citizens peacefully openly and legally carrying holstered pistols were detained by police for two hours. The police closed the pier where the Second Amendment activists were fishing.

The legal open carriers were eventually released and allowed to continue their activities. However, police remained at the scene and actively discouraged other members of the public from making contact with the Second Amendment activists. From

Police reopened the pier, but left a couple of officers there and stated, “We are encouraging visitors to use other portions of South Pointe Park.”

The men cited Florida Statute 790.25(3), the (h) subsection of which allows openly carrying a gun by “person engaged in fishing, camping, or lawful hunting or going to or returning from a fishing, camping, or lawful hunting expedition.” They came prepared with a print out of the statute.

The action is almost certain to result in a lawsuit or lawsuits against Miami Beach for numerous violations of Constitutional rights.  From

Eric Friday, general counsel for Florida Carry, said the men were held by police for two hours and had guns drawn on them.

“Overreaction would be an understatement, but I do believe they overreacted,” Friday said.

Friday said his group planned to take legal action against the city for how the police handled the situation.

If you look at the image from, you can see that at least one Second Amendment activist was wearing a body camera. He appears to be in restraints.

The group associated with the event, Florida Carry, is a well managed resourceful, and experienced Second Amendment group. They have won several settlements in Florida courts. It is likely that more than one video camera was recording events. Florida Carry had this comment on its Facebook page:

The illegal attack on our members by the Miami Beach PD is a developing incident. We are pouring every necessary resource in to this incident.

Most of the news coverage of the police action says the Second Amendment activists were “briefly detained”. Two hours is not “briefly detained”. There is considerable court precedent about the definition of “briefly detained”. It is less than 10-20 minutes.

In this case, there was no probable cause. There was no reasonable suspicion. Open carry demonstrations while fishing have been ongoing in Florida for several years, and have been widely publicized.

The use of police resources to actively persuade members of the public to avoid contact with open carriers is an important twist to this event .

Open carry demonstrations are powerful, protected, symbolic speech. The stated purpose of the demonstration was to exercise First Amendment rights to protect and advance Second Amendment rights.

The Miami Beach Police used their police power to directly chill the exercise of the First Amendment, without any legal reason to do so.

This will not end well for Miami Beach.

Florida remains one of the five states where open carry of pistols is generally prohibited in public by state law. There are a few exceptions, such as open carry while camping or fishing or while in transit to and from such activities.

General open carry, is legal in 45 states. It has been stalled in the Florida legislature for the last few years through underhanded defections by Republicans and through machinations of the Republican leadership.  Those Republicans tend to lose their seats.

Eventually, I expect open carry to pass in Florida. There is no valid reason for it to be illegal.

There is one invalid reason. Open carry makes a loud, clear, political statement: the Second Amendment is real, and it means something.

Those who wish a disarmed population find that statement insufferable.

©2018 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice is included.

Link to Gun Watch

Gun Owner Loses Firearm In Sofa At IKEA

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H/T Bearing Arms.

This irresponsible boob makes all of us responsible gun owners look bad.

This person maybe be facing charges as IKEA has a no guns allowed policy.

When you’re carrying a gun, it’s important to remember where it is at all times. After all, it’s a lifesaving tool, but only if you can get to it when you need it.

On the other hand, a lost gun is a major problem. Off your person and out of your control, you don’t know who will pick it up and what will happen with it. That’s bad for everyone.

However, one gun owner made it hard to claim we’re all responsible when he allowed his gun to do an impression of pocket change at an IKEA.

After finding a gun in a sofa at IKEA, a child fired the loaded weapon in the store, prompting an investigation of the incident.

Earlier that day, a customer at the Fishers, Indiana, store sat down on the couch to test it out, CNN affiliate WTTV reported.

When he got up to keep shopping, he didn’t realize his gun had fallen out of his pants.

Later, a group of kids sat down on the sofa and found the gun, Fishers police told WTTV. One of them pulled the trigger and fired a single shot.

No one was injured, and the store stayed open after the incident, WTTV reported.

An IKEA spokesperson said in a statement that customer safety and security is the company’s top priority.

“We take this incident very seriously and we have offered the family of the child involved our sincerest apologies,” the statement said.

IKEA says they conduct regular walks and safety audits, but it’s unlikely they had any reason to look for a firearm in the cushions of a sofa.

Prosecutors are looking at the case to decide if any charges should be filed.

For what it’s worth, I’m not sure stupidity is a criminal offense, and yes, this was stupidity.

While the report doesn’t make any reference to what kind of firearm was involved, it had to be a very small pistol. I’m thinking something like a .22 revolver or even a Derringer. It couldn’t have been anything much heavier otherwise, he’d likely have noticed. It doesn’t sound like it was holstered when found, either, so my guess is that it was a small revolver in the pocket and not in any holster, which then slipped out of the loose pocket and was later found by a kid.

Thank God no one was hurt.

Folks, we need to police our own on stuff like this. If you know someone carrying like this, give them a verbal slap upside the head. I’d advise a literal slap, but I don’t want to get hammered for instigating violence or some such nonsense. Frankly, though, this warrants a slap or twelve.

Honestly, anyone with half a brain should be able to see the problem with carrying a gun like this. Even if you’re not parking your butt on sofas, there are any number of other situations where you may find yourself in a position to lose your gun. For example, what if you have to get involved in a non-firearm altercation? If sitting on a sofa will cause the weapon to fall out of your pants, what will rolling around on the ground with a 200 lbs man going to do?

Seriously, don’t do this stuff. Make sure your weapon is secured on your person so stuff like this won’t happen.

No, Other States’ Gun Laws Have Little To Do With Boston Crime

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H/T Bearing Arms.

The crime in Boston is do to the politically correct enforcement of laws and not guns from other states.

As part of the debate on guns, we routinely point out that gun laws don’t work. We’ve provided a pile of anecdotal data along those lines through the years, as has everyone else remotely connected to the pro-gun side. Others have provided actual data illustrating this point.

However, anti-gunners in the media routinely present only one side of things. Up to and including blaming other states for their states’ criminal problems.

ONE REGULAR REFRAIN of gun-rights extremists is that tough gun laws do little or nothing to curb gun crimes, because criminals don’t obey them.

That thinking is as simplistic (and long-lived) as the old bumper sticker that proclaimed, “When guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns.”

Actually, a recent study by the Boston University School of Public Health confirmed what everyone should know by now: Tough gun laws work. That study concluded that waiting periods before a gun purchase, the requirement of a permit to buy a gun, forbidding gun purchases by people with violent misdemeanors on their record, and seizing guns from those convicted of such misdemeanors could result in a cumulative decrease in gun crime of almost 14 percent.

I’m going to break in and say that I refute the findings of that study. While it found that guns flow in from other states, it doesn’t actually show that tough gun laws work. It merely cited the easiest ways for criminals to get guns currently. It doesn’t mean that every state adopting tough gun laws will stop bad people from getting guns. That’s kind of our point.

Anyway, back to the Boston Globe‘s fretting:

Still, outmoded thinking and false claims by gun rights advocates persist. One regular conservative retort to calls for tougher gun laws is a five-word refrain: How’s that working in Chicago?

Actually, when it comes to gun crime in Chicago, the focus should be less on the Windy City’s gun laws than on those of nearby states. Almost 60 percent of guns used in crimes in Chicago come from places with weak guns laws, Indiana, Wisconsin, and Mississippi prominent among them.

In other words, Chicago’s not responsible for its problems, Indiana is.

Then I ask, explain London to me, if you will?

England is an island, so there’s no easy access to other localities with loose gun laws. Most visitors have to go through a select number of entry points, all requiring tight security that should make it difficult to bring guns into the country. The limited road access points come from countries that also have strict gun control laws.

In other words, it should be difficult to get guns into the country where they’ve been essentially banned for years.

If tough gun laws work so well, why is London having such a difficult time with gun crime? Why are they having such a difficult time with violent crime in general that they even banned carrying pocket knives?

Calls to place the blame on other states are nothing more than geographic narcissism. It’s not their fault they have crime; it’s the fault of other states with ready access to guns, but far fewer crimes, another flaw in the Boston College study’s argument.

Crime is motivated by many factors, factors which seem to exist more in places like Chicago and other large urban centers. Population density, economic disparity, education, or any number of other factors may contribute far more to violence in these cities than any access to firearms. That’s the only rational explanation I can think of as to why access to guns doesn’t turn Indiana, Texas, or Georgia into war zones like Chicago.

Not that we can expect an editorial out of Boston to comprehend that simple fact.

Still No Attention On Brutal SC Mass Killing. Wonder Why?

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H/T Bearing Arms.

This murder does not fit the drive by media’s template that only evil guns cause mass murders.

Earlier this year, we reported on a brutal mass killing in South Carolina. In that case, a man beat several members of his family to death with a dumbbell. At the time, I wrote on it and pointed out how the mainstream media seemed to be ignoring it completely.

It seems that months later, the mainstream media has still opted to ignore this particular case. A quick Google search shows that there have been no recent stories on this matter since mid-March, for one thing.

Back then, the largest outlets to have touched this particular crime were the New York Post and the Daily Mail in England. The rest of the coverage comes from smaller, local news agencies like television stations or newspapers. No New York Times, no CNN, no MSNBC.

In March when this happened, the nation was still dealing with the fallout from Parkland. It had been roughly a month since a gunman had entered the Florida high school and killed 17 people. We were already primed for news about horrific events.

Now, three months later, there’s still silence.

Part of that might be a lack of movement in the case. Nothing new has happened, of course, so why report anything new. That explains the smaller media outlets not reporting anything new, but what about those outlets that haven’t reported a damn thing?

The golden maxim in the news business is, “If it bleeds, it leads.” While people say they want happy, positive news coverage, they don’t respond to that. They respond to the aftermath of violence, though. Everyone in the news industry knows it. It’s part of why coverage of mass shootings is so irresistible, even without trying to advance a narrative.

So why was this one ignored?

Back in March, I charged the mainstream media with intentionally ignoring this story because the killing not only proved mass killers could murder people without guns, but it would also help illustrate how important guns can be. After all, not a single one of the victims was able to overpower the killer, but if one of them had a gun, they might have resisted then.

I still think that was partly true. I think the other part has more to do with the media figuring they had a bigger story by milking Parkland simply because people were already wanting more information on that killing.

Neither cause paints the media in a positive light, though.

Today, three months later, it seems everyone has forgotten about this horrific crime. While David Hogg and his merry band of misfits are touring the country in a chartered bus, still capitalizing on their 15 minutes of fame from one crime, so many people are ignoring this one and the victims. Would it have mattered more if they had been shot? Would they have been worthy of our attention then? Would they have been worth a live feed from near the scene? Would friends and family of the victims have then been worthy of being interviewed?

The idea that the answers to any of these questions might be “yes” disgusts me to no end.  The fact that I can’t feel right declaring the answer as being “no” disgusts me just as much.

This crime didn’t advance the narrative, and they already had a golden goose of a story. They didn’t care about 72-year-old Joseph Manigault, 69-year-old Rose Manigault, 42-year-old Kenya Manigault or 15-year-old Faith Manigault because, frankly, they suck at their jobs.

So when people wonder why I’m quick to condemn them, this is the story I’ll show. These people were brutally murdered and the media that thinks they’re worthy to lecture us on morality not only harbors some of the most disgusting human beings imaginable but then ignore stories like this.

Again, it disgusts me.

NJ’s Governor Phil Murphy Thinks Poor People Shouldn’t Have Guns

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H/T Bearing Arms.

Governor Phil Murphy(D-NJ)like all DemocRats swear they are looking out for the little guy when in reality they are screwing the little guy.

We already knew that Governor Phil Murphy hated guns. His signing of a slew of recent gun control bills made that obvious in case anyone didn’t know. Of course, those laws didn’t stop a recent shooting in Trenton, NJ, but whatever, right?

What we didn’t necessarily know was just how much he hated poor people.

I mean, he may pretend he’s a champion of the little guy, but if that’s the case, why does he want so badly to make it too expensive for poor people to be armed in his state?

Gov. Phil Murphy is proposing to significantly hike fees for buying and selling firearms in New Jersey, a move that would raise the cost of gun permits and licenses for the first time in half a century and likely trigger a legal challenge from Second Amendment advocates.

Murphy, a Democrat who has already signed half a dozen gun control bills in his first few months in office, has publicly called for raising such fees.

The plan would raise the cost for handgun purchase permits from $2 to $50; firearms identification cards from $5 to $100; handgun carry permits from $50 to $400; retail gun dealer licenses from $50 to $500; and wholesaler/manufacturer licenses from $150 to $1,500, among other hikes.

Scott Bach, the director of the Association of New Jersey Rifle and Pistol Clubs, said the move was “intended to punish law-abiding gun owners for the acts of criminals and madmen and discourage the exercise of Second Amendment rights.”

“It also has the unintended consequence of denying that basic civil right to lower-income populations,” he said.

In some cases, the changes would nearly double the cost of purchasing a firearm, some of which retail for less than $200.

Muphy argues that it’s more expensive to get a license to own a dog in most towns in New Jersey than it is to get a gun.

I counter that argument by pointing out two facts. One, dogs are more expensive to upkeep than a gun and, as a result, tend to be owned by those with disposable income anyway. The second and most important counter, however, is that owning a dog isn’t a constitutionally protected right.

Anyone with half a brain can look at these measures to see they are going to hurt poor people the most. Even for someone looking for a nightstand gun, the cost will rise from a mere $7–still too much for a right, but manageable for most folks–to $150. That’s a lot of money, especially considering how long some people have to save in order to buy a Hi-Point at a similar price.

Meanwhile, the poor are those who are most likely to live in high-crime neighborhoods where their lives can be in danger simply for looking the wrong day down the street. These are also retired people who may have assets worth stealing but little actual income anymore.

In other words, Phil Murphy wants to make gun ownership in New Jersey only practical for higher-income folks. He’s made it clear he doesn’t care about the safety of lower-income people.

Oh, and what will these measures do to prevent crime? Nothing.

For him, it really is about not liking guns in citizens’ hands and little else.

Whoa: Americans Have Bought More Guns In the Past Two Months Than Our Military Has On Hand

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H/T Town Hall.

The DemocRats think if they wanted they could have door to door gun confiscation.

May was another solid month in gun sales, with over two millionbackground checks being run according to the FBI. Yet, Stephen Gutowski of The Washington Free Beacon also touched upon the Small Arms Survey, which showed that Americans own 393 million of the one billion-plus firearms in worldwide circulation. So, while we’re not the majority owner of all guns worldwide, Gutowski broke down some interesting aspects of this report. First, that in the last two months alone, Americans have bought more guns that our entirely military has on hand, and that Americans bought more guns in 2017 than every police agency in the world did combined:

…American civilians own nearly 100 times as many firearms as the U.S. military and nearly 400 times as many as law enforcement.

Federal Bureau of Investigation background check records suggest that civilians bought more than 2 million guns in May alone, which means civilians purchase more than double the number of firearms owned by police departments. The number of gun-related civilian background checks in May and April, at over 4.7 million, is greater than the number of firearms currently owned by the American military.

The FBI reported processing more than 25.2 million gun-related civilian background checks in 2017, which is more than the 22.7 million guns the Small Arms Survey estimates are currently held by every law enforcement agency in the world combined. Between 2012 and 2017, the FBI reported conducting more than 135 million civilian gun checks—more than the 133 million guns the Small Arms Survey estimates are in all the world’s military stockpiles.

The Small Arms Survey estimated there are about 1 billion firearms currently in circulation throughout the world. By its estimate, about 85 percent are owned by civilians and American civilians own nearly 40 percent of all the guns in the world. Researchers said worldwide firearms ownership was up since the last time they studied the issue about a decade ago.

He elaborated more on social media:

Stephen Gutowski


This, of course, makes is by far the #1 in civilian gun ownership in the world with the next closest being India at about 70 million. There are more civilian-owned guns in the US than their are people Most people, I think, understand that but don’t really grasp what it means.

Stephen Gutowski


Every law enforcement agency in America combined have about 1 million firearms in their inventory. That means American civilians have about 400 TIMES as many firearms as American police.

Stephen Gutowski


In May alone, American civilians bought somewhere around 2 million firearms. That’s twice as many firearms as every police department in America combined IN A SINGLE MONTH.

Stephen Gutowski


Similarly, the American military is estimated to hold about 4.5 million firearms. That means American civilians have 100 TIMES as many firearms as every branch of the American military COMBINED.

Stephen Gutowski


If you combine May and April’s gun-related background check numbers you get 4.7 million. That means the American public bought more guns IN JUST THE LAST TWO MONTHS than the entire American military has on hand.

Stephen Gutowski


Furthermore, the Small Arms Survey estimates all the world’s law enforcement agencies combined hold about 22.7 million guns. In 2017 alone, the FBI processed 25.2 million gun checks. The American public bought more guns in 2017 than every police agency in the world combined.

Stephen Gutowski


Between 2012 and 2017, the FBI did more than 135 million civilian gun checks. That’s more than the estimated 133 million guns held by ALL THE WORLD’S MILITARIES COMBINED.

All I can say is God bless our country and our Bill of Rights.

Czechs Hit Back Against EU Crackdown on Legal Gun-Owners: ‘Free Countries Don’t Disarm Their Citizens’

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H/T Breitbart London.

Even Czechs see the folly of draconian gun laws.

Czech president Miloš Zeman has put his name to a petition opposing an EU diktat which would clamp down on legal gun-owners and backed a constitutional amendment which would guarantee citizens’ right to keep arms for self-defence and protection of the homeland.

The directive on tightening control of firearms under the guise of counter-terrorism was approved by the European Parliament in mid-March, and would see the Czech Republic — which combines comparatively liberal gun rights with low levels of crime and extremely low levels of terrorism — forced to impose new restrictions or face sanctions from Brussels.

Center for Civic Freedoms founder Václav Klaus Jr., son of former president Václav Klaus Sr., complained that the governments of non-democratic and fascist countries disarm their citizens, not free countries.

The petition urges the Czech government and parliament to “reconsider and endorse and approve an amendment to the constitutional law on the security of the Czech Republic, enshrining into our constitutional order the right to legal possession of weapons for defence and internal and external security of our state “, and has already acquired some 170,000 signatures.

Breitbart London@BreitbartLondon

Czech Prez Calls for a European ‘Second Amendment’ for Self-Defence Against Terrorists 

Czech Prez Calls for a European ‘Second Amendment’ For Self-Defence Against Terrorists

Czech president Miloš Zeman has said Europeans should “have the courage to invest in our own guns” in order to guard against terrorism.

President Zeman — a eurosceptic critical of mass migration and a veteran of the Prague Spring uprising against the Soviet puppet government under Communism — has previously called for a European ‘Second Amendment’ along American lines, to deter terrorists.

“The level of international crime is growing because of Islamic terrorism,” he told the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe in late 2017.

“I am open and frank, and I do not use the phrase ‘Islamic terrorism’ lightly but, in the overwhelming majority of cases, it has Islamic origin. It is connected with genocide in Armenia.”

President Zeman added: “What can we do against international criminality? Invest in the police, invest in the army, and have the courage to invest in our own guns.

“My wife has a pistol. Of course, she passed all necessary tests, but now I am guarded by my wife, and not only by bodyguards,” he smiled.

“The Second Amendment to the American constitution says that everybody has the right to have a weapon — of course they must fulfil the necessary conditions and tests.

“We Europeans are a little more careful than the Americans, but after Barcelona and many assassinations, I think that the difference between Europeans and Americans is not so great.”

Follow Jack Montgomery on Twitter: @JackBMontgome

Time for a History Lesson About Gun Control

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H/T Town Hall.

Gun Control worked for Hitler,Stalin and Castro.

Advocates of “commonsense gun safety” measures have been promoting two major objectives.  One is universal background checks, about which the National Institute of Justice wrote “effectiveness depends on . . . requiring gun registration.”  Rep. Bobby Rush (D-IL) just introduced a bill in Congress that would do just that – create a national registry of all firearm owners.

The other objective is a ban on “assault weapons,” which have been defined in contradictory, bizarre, ways.  The American Medical Association has just reaffirmed its endorsement of such a ban, including the confiscation of all such firearms from Americans at large.

Why hasn’t Congress adopted these proposals?

Perhaps commonsense does matter.  Most guns are sold by licensed dealers, who are required to clear every sale through the National Criminal Background Check System (NICS).  Congress recently passed the Fix NICS bill because governmental units were often not reporting criminal records to NICS.  That’s why the Texas church shooter was able to buy a rifle.  His massacre was ended only by a citizen who shot him with an AR-15.

    It is doubtful that background checks for occasional private sales between law-abiding citizens would prevent any crimes.  Don’t hold your breath waiting for criminals to do background checks on each other.

    Similarly, the Parkland school shooting had nothing to do with the ability of law-abiding citizens to own semiautomatic firearms.  The FBI did nothing with the information that Nikolas Cruz threatened to carry out the murders, the local sheriff ignored his terroristic threats, and a cowardly deputy just stood outside while students were massacred.

    President Clinton did sign a law in 1994, which expired ten years later, banning “assault weapons.”  The law was not renewed after studies showed that it had no effect on crime.

    The federal NICS law, passed in 1993, prohibits registration of guns and gun owners.  Congress has repeatedly rejected gun registration based on bitter historical lessons.  Just before the 1941 Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, Congress forbade gun registration and reaffirmed the Second Amendment based on how the Nazis used registration records to confiscate firearms from their intended victims.

    Purportedly to fight violence in the streets, Germany’s Weimar Republic decreed gun registration in 1931, but warned that the records must not fall into the hands of radical elements.  Hitler seized power in 1933 and used those very records to disarm political opponents and Jews in order to render them incapable of any form of resistance.

    Political protest in France prompted Prime Minister Pierre Laval in 1935 to decree firearm registration and repression of the right to assemble.  What could possibly go wrong?

    The registration records were critical to the Nazis who overran France in 1940, imposed the death penalty for not turning in guns, and conscripted the French police to ferret out violators.  Despite the chance of being executed, numerous French citizens did not surrender their firearms.

    The very same Pierre Laval became the chief collaborator of the Nazis during the occupation.  The newspapers regularly reported the names of gun owners shot by firing squads.

    The brave French who had never registered their guns and retained them formed the basis for the Resistance.  To be sure, they never had sufficient arms, and prewar restrictions on “military style” firearms hampered their efforts, leaving them to resist with inferior weapons.  Yet they were able to commit acts of sabotage, gain intelligence, and sustain an underground movement to assist the Allies.  After D-Day, they engaged in open armed resistance.

    Such experiences are as old as humanity.  Tyrants, conquerors, and dictatorships of every breed disarm the subjects in order to dominate and exploit them.  Does that iron law of history mean anything today?

    No such conditions exist in the United States, due in no small part to our rights protected by the First and Second Amendments.  But history should teach us to be careful of what we wish for.

    Require registration of, or ban, guns arbitrarily called “assault weapons” or even all firearms?  Don’t bank on much compliance.  Impose felony penalties?  As the wartime French illustrated, many wouldn’t  comply even with the threat of the death penalty.

    Maybe it’s time to pursue real solutions to criminal violence and forget about a war on law-abiding gun owners.

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