By Shane Kastler
I’m writing this in the wake of the Las Vegas massacre, but I could write this article after any mass shooting because the reactions from the anti-gun crowd are always the same. Their logic is flawed, extraordinarily simplistic, and dangerously "statist" in nature. Their thinking goes something like this:1. Guns killed people. 2. Government should take guns. 3. People would be safe. In reality, what happened was: 1. Lunatic killed people. 2. He used guns to do it. 3. Guns can be used to either murder or to defend. Below are five reasons why gun control doesn’t work.
- Gun Control Empowers Murderers. Strict gun control measures do nothing but empower murderers of all different kinds. Be they lone nut assassins, mass shooting perpetrators, or terrorist cells. The more likely a killer is to face resistance, the less likely he is to provoke hostilities. Would people packing guns have been able to prevent a massacre like what happened in Las Vegas? Probably not. A psycho shooting down on a large crowd from a 32nd story window is nearly impossible to prevent. But the point, the principle, and the question is if the government should have the right to disarm good citizens and thus empower bad ones. Maybe Vegas-style massacres cannot be prevented. But this doesn’t mean other murders could not be prevented; and taking guns from honest people only empowers dishonest ones.
- Gun Control Criminalizes Self-Defense. This fact is often overlooked by the gun control advocates of the world, who seem to think EVERY solution to EVERY problem involves the government “doing something.” In actuality, the government “doing something” is what causes many of the problems we face. Why should laws exist that would criminalize a person’s attempt to defend themselves and their family? The more laws that exist on the books, the more likely the government will use such laws to prosecute and even incarcerate those who have committed no act of aggression against anyone. Furthermore, crooked governmental agencies would have yet another “law” with which to persecute their political enemies. If politicians will use the IRS to punish their enemies. They will use gun laws also.
- Gun Control Creates a Violent and Unnecessary Black Market. Some would argue that economic reasons such as this are unimportant. Instead we should consider how many lives would be saved by eliminating gun violence, through gun control. But this reason speaks to both the economic issue and the violence issue, as the two go hand-in-hand. One of the inevitable results of making something illegal is the rise of a black market that will continue to sell the product. Any gun that is made illegal will sky rocket in price underground; and will lead to crime, violence, and mayhem far worse than if such guns were simply sold legally in the open market. If you think that making guns illegal will make them go away, then you are living in naivety. If you say that making them illegal to manufacture will make them go away, then you are underestimating the ability of people to produce things underground. In all honesty, guns are not that hard to make if you have a minimal amount of mechanical ability. One simply needs a barrel, a trigger, and a firing mechanism. And the government should not be allowed to determine who can and cannot make or own such devices.
- Gun Control Gives Government More Power. Some people like the idea of government having more power. Usually these are people who either possess political power themselves, or who blindly assume those in political power only want to protect them. The truth is much murkier than this. There are plenty of both good and bad people in the world. Which means there are plenty of both good and bad people who work in government. The state, by and large, already has far more power over the individual’s life than they should. Gun control simply “ups the ante.” It gives even more power to those who already have power, thus creating an opportunity for greater coercion and corruption.
- Gun Control Makes the World a More Dangerous Place. Bad people will always have access to guns. All the gun laws in the world will never change that. Should good people be denied access to defend themselves with the same weaponry as the criminals? And should the government have the power to hamstring those who wish to defend themselves and their families? The more governments seize control of self-defense mechanisms, the more power that is given to both governments themselves and to criminal enterprises.
Tragedies like the one that happened in Las Vegas are horrific and sad. There can be no good reason for such indiscriminate murder on such a mass level. Emotions are bound to be raw, and the visceral responses to such crimes will be over-reactionary and dangerous. Gun control is only good for those who are in power and can increase the control they have over people’s lives. Citizens have a right to defend thermoses and this right should never be infringed upon, no matter what tragedy occurs. If person “A” shoots person “B” then person “B’s” friends do not have a right to tell person “C” that they cannot defend themselves from person “A’s” next violent act. Gun control is unconstitutional and immoral, and it should be rejected by all freedom-loving citizens of the world.
Shane Kastler is Pastor at the Heritage Baptist Church, Lake Charles, LA and Co-Host; "Church & State" KELB Radio, 100.5 FM. He blogs at The Narrow Road.