Can More Gun Laws Stop a Lawbreaker?
The MSM, various politicians, and the usual celebrity suspects didn't even wait a day before calling for more gun laws after news of the Connecticut shooting broke across the airwaves. However, they're all overlooking one important point -- Connecticut is already ranked as the 5th most stringent state in the land regarding gun laws.
And to be clear, this ranking doesn't come from just anybody. Rather, it comes from the Brady Campaign Against Gun Violence, which scored Connecticut the 5th "toughest" in 2011.
For example, in Connecticut you have to have a permit to purchase a handgun, a permit to own, and you have to register your "assault weapons" with the state. Additionally, "no person shall possess an assault weapon unless that person possessed that firearm before October 1, 1993, and received a certificate of possession from the Connecticut State Police prior to July 1994."
Even legally owned assault weapons can only be possessed in one's home "or other property owned by that person," or while "on the premises of a target range" or similar facility. The weapon can be possessed while on the "premises of a shooting club," or while attending "an exhibition, display or educational project about firearms." Or while transporting the firearm to any of these places or to a licensed dealer. Yet even in lawful transport, the weapon must be locked in a trunk or container in such a way as to be "inaccessible" to the driver or passengers of the vehicle.
These are stringent laws, yet neither criminals nor evil people worry about adhering to the law when they embark on the commission of crime. Thus 20-year-old Adam Lanza used guns that weren't in his name (they were in his mother's) to commit heinous crimes. He took them, when they weren't his to take; he used them, where they weren't supposed to be used and in ways they weren't supposed to be used; and he took innocent lives in the process. It's hard to ascertain just how many laws he broke to commit his crime.
Yet as Bob Crook, executive director of the Coalition of Connecticut Sporstmen put it, "The laws here are pretty strict, and they're working. But I don't know any law that would prevent someone from committing...these offenses which are clearly psychologically based."