Gun Control: Soak, Wash, Rinse, Reject -- And It Still Stinks

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guns Asperger Syndrome

Every time there's a horrific mass shooting, and sometimes when there's a single random killing, there's a momentary blip on the heart meter over sane gun control laws. A voice or two calling out for reasonable gun regulation.

This past weekend's Isla Vista, California, massacre has once again brought out the cry for gun control. Despite a vast majority of the US population agreeing with this, Congress will continue its spin cycle and do nothing. The latest voice to attempt the seemingly impossible is Sen. Peter King (R-N.Y.)

Huffpo:

Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.) joined the charge of politicians calling for a review of gun control legislation on Sunday in the wake of a gunman's deadly rampage on the campus of University of California, Santa Barbara.

“This tragedy demonstrates once again the need to keep guns out of the hands of the mentally ill,” he said.

Boy, haven't we seen that so often before? But don't worry, you NRA enthusiasts and right-wing gun nuts, nothing is going to come of this. It's just another case of "soak, wash, rinse, repeat." Wishy-washy, wishy-washy.

Just asking, what is so hard and so wrong with a common sense law regarding guns? We do have some regulations, so it's not a totally foreign concept. We refuse sales of certain automatic weapons, we don't allow people to carry guns openly in many places and we don't let ex-felons purchase guns. Why not a simple bill which might weed out unstable or unqualified citizens from getting them. It would still protect citizen's 2nd Amendment rights. Call it a sanity clause -- but with a loose interpretation of sanity.

In this case, maybe a better word might be a responsibility clause. Anyone of legal age who wishes to get a gun to join the state militia (that's the 2nd Amendment) or even wants a gun for their own personal protection (a very loose interpretation of the 2nd Amendment), needs only to pass a proficiency test to show they know how to safely handle the gun or rifle. At the time of licensing, DGS (Department of Gun Safety) would also assess any overt signs of mental or emotional instability which would not prohibit the applicant from getting licensed. If and only if the inspector feels there is a problem the applicant will be directed to get a mental evaluation stamp from a certified health specialist before the license would be approved.

Now before you go thinking that's an abuse, let me confess that my younger brother has Asperger Syndrome. He was diagnosed years ago. He's the kindest, finest person you'd want to know. Yet, you would only need two minutes talking to him to know there's something a little off. He's still capable of living on his own, he worked for 25 years for the City of Los Angeles, and he's self-supporting. But truthfully he should not have a weapon of any kind.

This brings me to the Santa Barbara area tragedy. The shooter was reportedly diagnosed with Asperger Syndrome, so obviously I'm a bit familiar with it. Why was he sold weapons? That truth is, because there's no rule against it.

Despite that, with the dearth of meaningful  restrictions on who can buy a gun, this ill young man went twice to a gun store and plopped down money and bought weapons. That was it. And that's really the sum total of gun control in our nation.

We make people get and renew driver's licenses ever few years for the privilege to get behind the wheel of vehicles, classified as deadly weapons. So what's the harm in doing the same with guns? The only ones who should fear this regulation are those who shouldn't have guns in the first place.

Oh, just as a side argument for this sanity  or responsibility gun licensing-- my brother, when he was younger, decided he wanted to learn how to fly. He paid his money, took flying lessons and passed the flying test. But he was denied a license. Why? Simply because the certifying instructor noticed his slightly different behavior (the Asperger Syndrome) and reported it the the FAA. They interviewed my brother and had him meet with a licensed psychologist. It was determined that he was emotionally unqualified to deal with the stress of flying.

That was the right move. And this same logic and reason should be part of a congressional bill. Let's not stop gun sales. Let's stop gun sales to those who might be unqualified to handle the stress and responsibility. What I propose is not new, nor is it a fail-safe system. Some people will fall through the cracks. But it's sure going to make it safer for all of us.

Watch this distraught father of one victim from the recent shooting. He wants two things-- Congress to get off their asses to do something and he really wants equal rights for all of us -- the right for us to live even if it trumps some interpretation of our right to bear arms.

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  • MrApple

    We meet again. Keep up the good fight.

  • http://lwdgrfx.com/ Lucian Dixon

    "The media" ??? .Who...us???
    [looks around] .No media here. You can read more about us on, logically enough, our 'About' page.
    http://thepoliticalcarnival.net/about/

  • http://thepoliticalcarnival.net/ GottaLaff

    "But don't worry, you NRA enthusiasts and right-wing gun nuts," No. There's no bias in the media...

    Psst! We're not "the media." We're a blog. We're a liberal blog. We're a very biased blog. That's what blogs do. That's what we do.

    As for the rest of your rant, we've covered all of that in other posts.

    Thanks for dropping by.

  • some other guy

    "But don't worry, you NRA enthusiasts and right-wing gun nuts," No. There's no bias in the media...

    " It would still protect citizen's 2nd Amendment rights. Call it a sanity clause -- but with a loose interpretation of sanity." THIS RIGHT HERE IS WHY SANE GUN ADVOCATES ARE CONCERNED. Who will be the one 'loosely interpreting sanity?'' Could this turn into the angry neighbor anonymously calling Child Protective Services on their neighbor because they had an argument about the property boundary and he parks too close to his driveway? It very well could. All is needed is for someone to ''Report you" and then you are "in the system" forever.

    "...weed out unstable or unqualified citizens" Right. And who decides that?

    "needs only to pass a proficiency test to show they know how to safely handle the gun or rifle." This is already happening now.

    "If and only if the inspector feels there is a problem the applicant will be directed to get a mental evaluation stamp from a certified health specialist before the license would be approved." Wonderful. A government office with government employees deciding with a pre-determined agenda, who is and isn't "Sane." Maybe that guy who keeps insisting on his Second Amendment Rights is just a little bit too zealous. Maybe he should be given a closer 'evaluation' as to his 'competence'?

    "The only ones who should fear this regulation are those who shouldn't have guns in the first place." See what I mean? Millions of reasonable, responsible gun owners 'fear this regulation'. And according to THIS author, WE should not be allowed to own guns.

    "We make people get and renew driver's licenses ever few years for the privilege to get behind the wheel of vehicles, classified as deadly weapons." Right. Another Straw man Argument. "Renewing a drivers license" means checking the box as to whether or no you want to reuse the same picture or take a new one. There is no "Test" to renew a drivers license.

    "nor is it a fail-safe system. Some people will fall through the cracks. But it's sure going to make it safer for all of us." Ah, yes. "Some people" will fall through the cracks. Some who should be allowed, will be denied. And some who should be denied, will be allowed.

    But that's worth the risk of installing a select group of government employees who are like minded individuals (like minded with this author) and we can all live safer lives. The ultimate "End Justifies The Means" scenario where a select demographic will be singled out as offensive so that they can be more closely monitored.

    This doesn't bother anyone?

  • http://thepoliticalcarnival.net/ GottaLaff
  • Chris

    How many more lives will it cost before liberals realize that gun control does not work ? Gun free zones are a magnet for deranged murderers. It is no wonder the highest murder rates occur in the most anti-gun states.

  • Jason Perry

    Here we go again....WHAT, specifically is "sensible"? Does California require background checks for firearms purchases?....YES! Does California require a 10 day waiting period for handgun purchases?...YES! Does California limit handgun purchases to One per month?...YES! Does California limit magazine capacity?...YES! Does California limit the model specif "types" of handguns that may be purchased? ....YES! Does California have all the other restrictions on where and in what manner a firearm may or may not be carried?....YES! This kid jumped through EVERY HOOP that the State of California...one of the most strictest firearms laws state in the union....has to offer. WHAT FURTHER restrictions do you propose? SPECIFICALLY....don't just say "Common Sense" of "Reasonable". That was the excuse you gave for all of the above.

  • TexTopCat

    I have no problem with denying gun purchase to mentally ill people, however, these mentally ill people still need protection, so who provides that protection? Does being mentally ill obligate the police to provide protection by some "special relationship"? Does being mentally ill require residency in a mental facility? Does there need to be a guarantor appointed?
    Now, the other problem with our plan is that no where was there "due process". We need never to deny any right to a person without a court action where the accused is given the right to present a good defense. So, have a court declare the person as not able to meed the responsibilities of owning a gun, appoint a keeper, and order the police to provide 24/7 protection detail.