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Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Fixing the Gun Problem

       I am sure this post will stir up some emotions.  Gun people seem to be for or against.  It is cut and dried and no middle ground. To me the best kind of personal security system is the one pictured above.  It will not be in a drawer when you need it and properly trained will react without your command or conscience being an issue.  Having spent thirteen years in the Army and ten years of it overseas I know what guns can do.  Before one gets emotional on me.  This plan does not restrict the right to own guns.  Not even the big magazines.  It creates a system of accountability and it makes those who want and have the guns pay for the programs to ensure their rights.  Send a copy of this to your Congressman.  If not you may get a law you like a lot less than this one.

               A Comprehensive Gun Solution

     To fix the gun problem America needs to deal with the real problem.  Today in America there is a lack of willingness to accept blame and to give everybody a break, especially criminals.  The gun problem needs to be dealt with by Federal laws.  The right to have a gun is given in the Constitution and should thereby be a Federal offense.

   Controlling the size or type of weapons will not reduce the crime level in America.  Several serial killers and mass murderers in American history never used a gun.  Jeffrey Dahmer, Ted Bundy, and Timothy McVeigh never used guns to inflict injury.  They fell through the cracks in the system back then and still would. 

    The gun industry provides jobs which are needed in America.  The problem is not what kinds of guns are available, but who and how people have access to them. The first thing that needs to be addressed is who has access to guns.  Then the punishment system needs to be modified to reflect the seriousness of owning and using guns.  There needs to be a set punishment for certain crimes.  They need to be enforced with no plea bargains being allowed.  You commit the crime you do the time.  My views may be harsh but they are fair if they are enforced without favor.  These laws all need to be Federal crimes and punishment done in the Federal prison system.

    Here are some suggestions that will go a long ways toward realistic solutions.

1.  Commission of a crime with a gun should be a Federal offense and carry a minimum five year sentence. Regardless if anyone is injured.  Just the presence of the gun at the time of the crime would require enforcement

2.  Shooting someone in the commission of a crime would carry a ten year mandatory minimum sentence.  If injuries are suffered by anyone the time should be adjusted to be comparable with the suffering of the victim.

3.  If anyone is killed in the commission of a crime the minimum sentence is life in prison without the chance of parole. 

    Number three may sound harsh but the victim who is shot does not get a second chance at life.  Knowing there is a set penalty for a crime might stop some from committing a crime.

4.  Anyone who possesses, uses, transfers a licensed weapon without a proper permit and title transfer will receive a minimum one year sentence.

      Number four means if a person with no background check, no permit to own a licensed weapon or with a criminal record is in possession of a gun they can be charged. 

5.  Threatening a person with bodily harm while using a weapon of any kind is grounds for a one year prison sentence.

     The second part should deal with gun ownership.  This nation was liberated from England with single shot weapons and it was preserved as a nation with single shot weapons.  Single shot weapons properly handled can save a life or shoot game to provide for the needs of the hunters family.  These are the kinds of guns that are guaranteed under the Constitution.   Guns that are muskets, shotguns, bolt action, lever action or pump action require a pause between shots.  Generally these are not the weapons chosen for mass murders.  They are often used in crimes of passion however.  These guns should not require a permit or a license of any kind.  This would preserve the rights granted under the Constitution.  Guns should be divided into two classes. The weapons mentioned above would be Class 1 weapons.  The weapons that follow in the next paragraph would be Class 2 weapons.

     All revolvers, semi-automatic pistols and rifles, and all automatic weapons should require a permit for ownership.  These would all be considered class two guns. The permit should require both a background check and mental evaluation.  It should be kept on permanent record.  All of these weapons should be licensed just like a car with a reasonable annual fee.  They should have a certificate of title and the title should be changed anytime ownership of the said weapon takes place.

    Anyone having three or more weapons should be classed as a collector. Collectors should be required to keep all their weapons under lock and key.  The weapons and the ammunition including magazines should be should be required to be in separate storage units each having its own key.

    Some of the funds raised by this program could be used to teach gun awareness and handling in the schools.  This would reinforce the understanding of why we have a second amendment.  It could be combined with an understanding of the American Constitution and history. The classes should also teach ethics and values dealing with the use of guns.

   Finally and mainly the funds could be used to put bullet proof doors on American Schools and classrooms.  A card lock system that restricts the entrance to any school except by a designated door should be put in place.  The system should be able to lock all classrooms from the main offices.  A system similar to those used in most motels and hotels in America should be installed.  This could be used to restrict intruders from entering a classroom without the proper card.

     This system does not take away any rights.  It does provide for a system of control and accountability as to who has weapons.  Penalties could be put in place for having a weapon without the proper paperwork also.  The system of permits and licenses could be put in place retroactively without violating the Constitution or the ex post facto laws.  Slaves were long term held property and their status was changed by use of the Constitution and all were freed.  Regardless of their standing before the war, all blacks received freedom.  This would be similar in nature.

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