Once more, [with reason] there is a lot of talk in the States about the right to bear arms.
There are those who say that mass shootings are the result of freely obtained weapons and those who say that guns should be freely available for self protection.
I think I have a solution?
First of all, banning weapons doesn't exactly work very well. Here in Ireland we have gun control but rarely a week goes past without some kind of gang or drug related killing. Those demanding gun control laws always overlook the embarrassing little fact that those who want to use guns for violent purposes aren't exactly law abiding citizens. Gun control disarms the ordinary bloke but doesn't affect the criminal.
Then there is the argument that if people carry guns they are less likely to be attacked as they can defend themselves. Going on the assumption that the "bad guys" will have a gun, legal or otherwise, then there is a certain logic to this. If I intend to rob someone am I going to pull a gun on them if there's a chance they'll just pull theirs in return?
And, of course, there is the good old American Constitution and its "Right to Bear Arms". Granted that was written back in the pioneering days when the indigenous natives and native wildlife weren't too friendly [with good reason], but would that little gem be placed into a modern constitution? I doubt it.
And here comes my little solution to the problem.
Let all guns become freely available. Let there be no restrictions or licences. Anyone who wants can carry a gun.
Aha, I hear you cry, what about the mass shootings?
Simple. Let the guns become freely available but have heavy restrictions on the purchase of ammunition: the American Constitution mentions arms but doesn't mention ammunition?
So the Constitution is satisfied. All can bear arms. The self-defence brigade are satisfied – the intruder now knows there is an excellent chance he'll face a gun but is that gun loaded?! And it's very difficult to carry out a mass-shooting if you have no ammunition. If I intend to rob, I now know there is an very high probability I'll be staring down the business end of a Glock, but is that Glock loaded? Would I take that chance?
I would have thought this would be an obvious answer?
But then I'm just a humble bloke living in the backwoods of Wicklow.