What if a municipality or some other polity were to decide that, in the interests of public safety, residents could own only a limited number of pistols, which happen to be the guns most frequently used in violent crimes? Gun owners could still own that particular type of product, they just couldn’t own as many of these guns as they chose, which would mean that there would be less guns lying around either to be stolen or used impulsively by the owners themselves. Maybe such an approach would be declared unconstitutional, but maybe not.
Can Laws Cure America’s Obsession With Guns?
Michael Weisser

For anyone we’ll versed in guns and gun culture, this just sounds ignorant and pointless. It’s like telling a mechanic that they can only have SAE wrenches in 1/4" increments.

The issue is that not all handguns are the same, and it’s relatively uncommon for a person to to own several of the exact same type unless they are a collector of that particular kind.

You’ve got subcompact, compact, full size, and even large frame handguns. That’s just the overall size! Then there’s the caliber of ammunition they use, which are all very different. A .22 is seldom relied on for defense as it is too weak to stake your life on. Meanwhile, a .44 Magnum and several other hunting calibers are usually too large for daily concealed carry. Then you’ve got to take into account the guns design and intended purpose. Target shooting models are not useful for defense or carry, as they’re usually full size and feature bells and whistles that get in the way. On the flip side, you can generally hunt with a large revolver, but not one with a barrel shorter than 4". So to you, two revolvers may look the same, they may even use the same ammunition, but to the owner, the one with a 2" barrel might be their carry/defense gun and the 4" barrel one is required for hunting.

All I’m saying is that there’s a ton of nuance that is lost on critics because there is no single gun that can be all things to all people. they are literally as different as the dozens of wrenches a mechanic keeps in his toolbox.

As for how to actually improve things, because it can and should be improved, it’s my belief that background checks are a great starting point. But you can’t just mandate universal background checks without putting together a comprehensive action plan as to how it would work, how it would be enforced, and so on. It shouldn’t cost people anything either, meaning undue hassles or money. That comprehensive nature is what has been lacking in previous proposals, and that is why they have been opposed.

But you have to address the fact that NICS is outdated and unreliable. It uses paper forms, telephone operators, and it’s just ridiculous. Why not invest in modernizing NICS into a secure web portal (open to the public) and possibly even release mobile apps capable of scanning the barcodes on the back of many ID cards as a means of making universal background checks viable for regular people? No new legislation is needed to revamp the system. Get on it.

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