Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Bump In The Night

So, it was a really exciting moment last week when the National Rifle Association suggested it might be open to a ban of bump  stocks. In case you have missed the last week or so, bump stocks are replacements for the standard stock on a semi-automatic rifle that takes the recoil and returns it back to the firing process. Just like that, you've got nearly a machine gun. And even though machine guns are generally not available for civilian purchase, bump stocks are. As a matter of fact, in the days after the mass murder in Las Vegas, there was a bump in the sales of bump stocks. That is consistent with the surge in gun sales that have accompanied most every mass shooting here in the good ol' USA.
As the week ended, the NRA backed off the idea of a ban. “We don’t believe that bans have ever worked on anything,” Chris Cox said on Fox News Sunday. “What we have said is very clear: If something transforms a semi-automatic to function like a fully automatic, then it should be regulated differently.” 
Oh. Bans have never worked on anything? Somebody should tell the "President," especially as it applies to travel and so forth.
Does this mean we surrender to what Bill O'Reilly described as "the price of freedom?" Do we have to surrender our bodies the same way we surrendered our lungs to second hand smoke? 
Wait a second. That was a ban that worked. When I sit in a pizza joint inhaling a slice of pepperoni, I don't have to inhale a lungful of cigarette smoke that I did not order. And then when I head on over to the grocery store to pick up a few things, I won't expect to get a plastic bag in which I would carry my purchases home. Blah, blah, blah lack of convenience but the birds thank me and the gallons of fossil fuel that gets saved is an additional relief. How about that? Saving lives by banning something. 
We had a ban on assault weapons. When it expired, mass killings went up. More to the point, when Congress allowed the ban to expire, more people died. From being shot with assault weapons. It's a little like supply and demand. Except that this equation doesn't seem to be fueled by common sense. But I guess it doesn't make sense that the National Rifle Association would help us out on this one. Maybe we can get a study going that suggests that bump stocks cause cancer. 

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