A Pound of Prevention

Published June 22, 2017

The shooting incident in the Virginia ball park was barely over before politicians began crying for gun control. Governor McAuliffe of Virginia claimed that 93 million Americans are subjects of gun violence each day. He did correct this to say 93 Americans, which includes suicides (50%) with the balance mainly gang violence in large Democratic cities. However this mistake illustrates the casual regard anti-gun activists have for facts, causes and solutions. “Too many guns”, says McAuliffe, “Too easy to get without background checks.”

The shooter in Virginia came from Illinois, which has among the most strict gun controls. He possessed a Firearm Owners Identification Card (FOID), needed to possess or purchase firearms or ammunition. The guns were purchased legally, which would require a Federally-mandated background check. These requirements don’t seem to have any effect on gang members, so perhaps things need to be made more illegal. For criminals, guns are tools of their trade. No matter how many ordinary citizens are denied their right to “Keep and bear [carry] arms,” criminals will find a way.

The problem with anti-gun solutions is that their proposals affect many law-abiding citizens with little or no effect on criminals. In other words, a perversion of the slogan, “A Pound of Prevention for an Ounce of Cure.” How often do we hear “It’s for the children,” or “If this measure saves one life …” Children certainly do need to be saved, but most often from abusive or reckless parents, which account for the overwhelming majority of firearm incidents.

Since Cain and Abel, there have always been bad people who would inflict violence on others. Well into the 19th century, travelers in Europe and England were advised to travel in groups under arms. Members of Congress are proposing to grant themselves the right to carry concealed weapons, while ordinary citizens of Washington DC are denied the right to defend themselves in one of the most violent cities in the United States. In Chicago, a handful of robberies occur each week in the holiest part of the Loop, Millennium Park. On Wacker Drive yesterday, a motorist with a legal carry permit shot at (and missed) two assailants who tried to rob him while waiting in traffic.

Solutions to Gun Violence?

One solution is more guns in the hands of good people. Since a Federal court decision in 2013, Illinois residents have the right to apply for a license to carry a concealed weapon. Over 200,000 have availed themselves of this right. Illinois criminals have only about one chance in fifty of accosting an armed victim. With 30,000 armed robberies each year in Chicago, one would expect nearly 500 would be thwarted with a legal gun. Most, however, go unreported unless someone is killed or injured. While the courts have issued a similar decree against Washington DC, that city has issued no permits, in defiance of the courts. Congress is once again considering a measure which would require states recognize concealed weapon permits issued by other states, much as they must now recognize drivers’ licenses and marriage. Things are looking up.

In the Virginia ball park, only two law enforcement officers were on hand to confront the gunman in a timely fashion. Facing an high powered rifle with handguns is not a good situation, yet that’s what they did. In a situation like this, the gunman will forget his intended victims and devote his undivided attention to the people shooting at him. That probably saved the lives of up to 25 Congressmen until help arrived in force, after three and a half long minutes.

Another solution is to arm police guarding events or patrolling the streets with rifles, for example scary black semi-automatic rifles. Psychologically, these weapons leave no doubt who is in charge. On a tactical level, a rifle multiplies the effectiveness of that officer at least fourfold. He is a match for an assailant with a rifle, or any other weapon at much longer distances. The effective range of a handgun is only about 10 yards under combat conditions, whereas a rifle is effective to 200 yard or more. A man with a gun, knife, axe or machete is deadly to unarmed citizens, and it may not be possible to get within 10 yards in time to save them, or risk shooting bystanders along with the assailant. A trained rifleman can put three rounds inside a 4″ target at 200 yards in under two seconds. (An expert can do much better). When the chips are down, that means one less criminal with far less danger to his victims than pistol fire.

Who’s to blame for the violence?

Former DC US Attorney, Joe DiGenova, expressed his anger on the Laura Ingraham radio show, where he called out  Nancy Pelosi, Chuck Schumer, and Maxine Waters for directly inciting Sanders campaign volunteer James Hodgkinson to attempt the murder of Majority Whip Steve Scalise and many others on June 14 at the GOP charity baseball practice.  DiGenova declared that they had blood on their hands.  Evidence collected after the shooting shows that Hodgkinson was a fanboy of every Democrat talking point that implicitly called for violence against Donald Trump and Republicans.

Democrats appear to sanction, if not endorse the violent counter-protests at Trump rallies and against Trump supporters. They also sanction Black Lives Matter protests, which disrupt business and travel, often accompanied by violence and vandalism, and threats against the police, The Freedom of Speech is the freedom to voice your opinion, not to silence or intimidate others.

In a subscription article shared by California writer and author, Burt Prelutsky, on Saturday, June 18, 2017, BE AFRAID, BE VERY AFRAID, Mr. Prelutsky included these astute remarks about shooter Hodgkinson that are laced with Burt’s uncanny ability to combine noteworthy political commentary with doses of wit.   Mr. Prelutsky speaks of 66-year-old James T. Hodgkinson of Belleville, IL, as one who clearly belonged in Bellevue:

Although Hodgkinson was an avid supporter of Bernie Sanders, a cuckoo in his own right, Sanders isn’t responsible for Hodgkinson using Republican congressmen and their aides for target practice.  If I were to blame anyone aside from Hodgkinson, it would be Sen. Chuck Schumer, Rep. Al Green, Rep. Maxine Waters, and their lap dogs in the media who have conspired to make it appear that Adolf Hitler has come out of hiding and taken up residence in the White House.

And, after all, which of us has not at some time fantasized using a time machine to transport us back to the late 20s or early 30s and assassinating Der Fuhrer before he could launch the events leading to the deaths of 70 million people?

For months, the leftist rabble has devoted all its time to demonizing President Trump over his alleged ties to Vladimir Putin, ties that have been concocted out of whole cloth in order to rationalize Hillary’s loss and to bring down the duly-elected president.  The Democrats in Congress and their lap dogs in the media should be ashamed of themselves, but shame, along with honesty and integrity, are alien to their nature.

In addition to all that, I’m willing to wager that despite their calls for Trump’s impeachment, dullards such as Maxine Waters and Al Green couldn’t find Russia on a map.

Talk of bi-partisanship in Congress a pipedream?

Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., received a standing ovation following remarks that emphasized a connection between the two parties that prevails despite the frequent and intense partisan bickering.

“For all the noise and fury, we are a family,” Ryan said. “These were our brothers and sisters in the line of fire.”

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., praised Ryan’s speech and added, “We will use this occasion as one that brings us together and not separates us further.”

It took only one day for Nancy Pelosi to change her tune to suggest that Fox News was partly to blame for “a lot of the vitriol and invective” in politics, noting that a man who was arrested for threatening her years ago had been, according to the man’s mother, an avid Fox News viewer.  Pelosi also claimed that partisanship began escalating in the 1990’s, instigated by the GOP who relentlessly investigated President Clinton and eventually impeached him.  The most liberal of Democrats suggested that the divisive mood was recently escalated thanks to Trump when he flung crude insults at the media, Democrats, and member of his own party.

In this divided nation where President Trump is being challenged and confronted daily by those who will do and say anything to have him removed from office, there is a good chance that things will get worse before they get better, which is essential if this nation is to survive what would qualify as a treasonous act in another era — subversion of government with the removal of a duly elected president through nefarious means.

[Originally Published at Illinois Review]