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Why hunters should be leery of gun bans
Feb 12, 2013 4:00 pm
I’ve never owned a so-called “assault rifle” or a hand gun. I do my deer hunting with a muzzleloader and occasionally a 50-year-old 30-30. I hunt squirrels with a .22 and turkeys with a 12-gauge shotgun.
So why should I, as a hunter, feel uneasy as I follow the ongoing debate about “gun control?” After all, the gun-control advocates don’t propose banning MY guns, do they?
No. Not yet.
But, Second Amendment and self-protection issues aside, my concern is that banning a particular type of gun won’t deter the crooks and crazies, and each failed ban will lead to restrictions on more types of firearms. That will inevitably include guns used for hunting.
Does anyone really believe that someone insane enough to shoot little kids in a schoolroom will dither over what type of gun he uses?
If he can’t get an assault rifle, for example, he could choose a 30-30 deer rifle like mine. It’s capable of firing seven high-powered shots in as many seconds. Or he could use a 12-gauge shotgun that can hold up to seven shells and, like the 30-30, takes mere seconds to re-load.
At close range a 12-gauge is one of the most lethal weapons on earth. The point man in my infantry company in Vietnam had a choice of carrying an M-16 rifle or a 12-gauge pump shotgun loaded with buckshot. He chose the shotgun. It’s more effective in close quarters, such as a shadowy jungle trail – or a movie theater or classroom.
If I thought banning a particular type of gun would save lives I’d be for it. But it won’t, any more than banning a particular model of car will deter a drunk driver. There’s proof of it:
Several years ago the poster-gun for the anti-gun faction was the “Saturday-Night Special,” a generic term for cheap hand guns used in many inter-city shootings. We were assured that if those particular guns were banned, urban shootings would diminish.
Saturday Night Specials were rounded up, mostly through feel-good “gun buyouts.” The result? Criminals upgraded to better guns and kept shooting. Chicago, which has some of the nation’s strictest gun-control laws, last year recorded 503 fatal shootings. This year’s body count stands at 45.
Some gun-control proponents claim that the problem is due to “easy access to guns.” Preposterous. That’s like blaming traffic fatalities on “easy access to cars.”
Most rural kids of my generation grew up in homes in which “access to guns” was as easy as opening a closet door. We’d come home from school, grab our guns and a handful of shells, and go hunting. We had unfettered access to guns, but we didn’t go around shooting people. Such random acts of violence were unthinkable back then.
What’s different now? A societal breakdown of morals and values, and in many homes a total absence of parenting. That, along with a cesspool of “entertainment” violence.
The Colorado mass shooting occurred in a theater during a movie about a mass shooting. The crazed shooter was dressed as the movie’s crazed villain. Think there might be a connection?
Kids play graphic, gory video games in which the goal is to see who can slaughter the most victims. They listen to “music” that glorifies drugs, violence and criminality.
Might some or all of that nudge a crazy over the edge? Who knows? No psychiatrist is capable of plumbing a “motive” in the poisoned mind of a monster capable of shooting children.
But common sense tells us this: if a lunatic is determined to shoot someone, he’s not going to quibble over ballistics. He’ll use whatever he can get his insane hands on – including a hunting rifle or shotgun like the ones in my home. They’re just as lethal – and in some situations more-so – as any of the scary-looking guns on the proposed ban list.
That’s an inconvenient truth that gun-control advocates either fail to comprehend or refuse to acknowledge as they push for a Band-Aid solution to our national nightmare.