By now we all know that America’s most popular rifle, the AR-15, is not the killing machine that the left wants its acolytes to believe it is. It is a semi-automatic .22 caliber rifle. It has capabilities comparable to the types of rifles that tend to be given to 11-year-olds as their first introduction to guns. The only thing that’s true about the AR-15 is that it was invented toward the end of World War II as a military weapon (at first). Its purpose was to give soldiers a light weapon with low recoil.
But the AR’s that are on the market today are not automatic machine guns. Those are illegal. And the term ‘assault rifle’ doesn’t mean anything. That’s Hollywood-ese for ‘really cool looking gun.’
But this aspect of the gun debate is not going to get us anywhere because even if leftists manage to ban the AR-15, the next big killing will be done with shotguns, (which are much more deadly by the way). And the killing after that will be done with pistols. This process will continue until they eventually get to all firearms.
The point is, against an unarmed crowd, even a kitchen knife can cause mass casualties. And that’s exactly what the left wants- unarmed populations of people who can be terrorized by the weakest possible weapons.
So it would behoove us to look at something more meaningful in our efforts to stop mass violence. We should look at people and the cultures they live in.
Of course, we know that Canada has more guns than the U.S. They have more restrictions on smaller weapons like handguns, but they have many more rifles. This is largely due to the fact that Canada has a fairly recent frontier culture, like the US. Canada also has large swaths of open land and is a fairly harsh environment. It’s a place where rifles make a lot of sense for recreation, hunting, and for protecting cattle populations from predators. But Canada has seven times fewer gun-related acts of violence than the US.
Anti-Second Amendment people will tell you that Canada still has higher rates of gun violence than countries that have strict gun bans. That is true- but in countries without guns acid attacks, knife attacks, and attacks on crowds of people using automobiles make up for what those populations lack in weapons access.
It might be useful to take a moment to reflect on the horror of being attacked by a person flinging a jar of acid and having nothing to defend yourself with. If we did away with the 2nd Amendment, you could start the countdown to the acid attacks.
In 1945, the United States had only a few laws on the books intended to control gun sales. There was a national registry and a prohibition against selling guns to violent criminals. Short of that anyone could purchase and use guns.
Rifle safety training and competitions were held at high schools, and it was common to see teenagers with rifles slung over their shoulders walking to, from, and around schools.
Imagine seeing that today. People would be sent into a blind panic. By 1950 there had been only one mass shooting. It took place in 1949 in Camden New Jersey. The shooter was a mentally disturbed person who shot and killed 13 people after his front gate was stolen. It was a rare event that was many years in the making and was later referred to in the media as the “Walk of Death.”
Other than the Camden shooting the crime spree of Al Capone’s gang in the 1930s was the only major spate of gun violence the country had experienced. Defined as a shooting of four or more persons by a single individual, mass shootings were practically unheard of.
Today, in America, there are roughly 1.5 mass shootings every day, and this has been the case since at least the mid-2000s. What’s the difference between our culture now and then?
For one thing, there are more people than ever. History has long shown that wherever people live in close proximity, more violence occurs. Another thing the media rarely makes note of is the fact that mass shooters are overwhelmingly prescribed either anti-depression or antipsychotic medication. In fact, more killers are on pharmaceuticals than use guns. So, if you’re looking to blame killings on technology, guns are not the only viable target.
~ American Gun News