AUSTRALIA has an answer on how to stop gun violence. The answer surfaced after a shooter massacred 35 people and injured 23 in a cafe in Port Arthur in 1996. In the 18 years before Port Arthur, 13 mass shootings happened. Since the government and people passed new laws there have been ZERO mass shootings. What actions did they take?
1. There were two buyback programs and two
uncompensated amnesties resulting in the
surrender of 1,038,089 illicit firearms.
2. There is uniform gun registration.
3. Repudiation of self defense as a legitimate reason to
hold a firearm.
4. Guns are to be locked up.
5. Ban on private sales and civilian ownership of semi-
automatic rifles and pump action shotguns.
In 2015, gun deaths in the USA were 11.2 per 100,000.
In Australia, the rate was 1.2 per 100,000.
(The source of the above evidence is Maggie Fox, www.nbcnews.com, 13 March 2018)
Recently, I had a conversation with an Australian living in the USA. I commented that Australia did something right after Port Arthur to significantly lessen gun violence. Craig responded with words like “There is no place for this craziness in Australia.” He asked about the Second Amendment as he sees it as a major problem in addressing gun violence. I agreed and explained some of the reasoning for the amendment.
The take-away from the conversation and Maggie’s article is laws make a difference. The NRA’s near total anti-regulation stance is anathema to common sense proposals. Their stance can be called “Gun Anarchy!” Starters are: universal background checks, domestic violence restraining orders, raising the age for the purchase of an assault rifle and limiting the magazine size. None of these laws would prevent a responsible person from gun purchases. I would argue that numbers 1,2,4 and the ban on assault rifles are within our Constitutional parameters. Also, take a look at a previous blog titled OMNIBUS GUN VIOLENCE BILL, all of which can be adopted within the scope of the Second Amendment.
The Australians have demonstrated a path. We can learn from their compassion. Now we need to elect leaders who will demand similar actions.