Chinese State Media: ‘Gun Ownership Out of Control in U.S.’

DENVER, CO - JANUARY 9: Second Amendment activist Joseph Gabriele of Littleton, Colorado gathers with other activists in support of gun ownership on January 9, 2013 at the Colorado State Capitol in Denver, Colorado. Lawmakers are calling for tougher gun legislation after recent mass shootings at an Aurora, Colorado movie …
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China’s state-run Global Times on Monday used the weekend’s shootings to argue that gun ownership is “out of control” in the United States and mass shootings are “shocking in a U.S. allegedly governed by law.”

That curious phrasing — criminals by definition do not obey laws, so their existence does not prove a nation is lawless — belied China’s desire to use mass shootings as a way of slapping back at Americans who criticize Beijing for such horrors as the persecution of the Uyghur Muslims and the erosion of Hong Kong’s autonomy. The authoritarian Chinese Communist Party (CCP) calls every nation with more freedom “lawless” to justify China’s heavy censorship, politicized justice system, and ruthless suppression of dissent.

For obvious reasons, the CCP has serious problems with the private ownership of firearms, so it attacked America’s Second Amendment with gusto in the Global Times:

The right to bear arms is enshrined by the US Constitution. No official statistics are on record counting how many guns there are among the US people, but the number is generally estimated to be hundreds of millions. Who own these guns? Are certain people prepared to use them as murder weapons? These issues have not been tracked or supervised effectively. Various criminal motives exist in American society. From the perspective of gun murders, the US is beset with crises.

Private gun ownership is a tradition from the early days at the founding of the US. In a modern society, the problems created by this tradition have already exceeded the benefits. Crime is one of the increasingly prominent modern diseases in several societies in the 21st century, and the spread of guns enables crime to unleash greater killing energy.

American society has already seen serious problems caused by the private ownership of guns, but their massive number has contributed to an enormous inertia. Many interest groups have benefited from it and some ordinary people have truly gained a sense of safety. To change this habit which has lasted hundreds of years, tremendous political courage and a rearrangement of interests is required. 

The Chinese paper called it a “fact” that the U.S. cannot handle guns and bemoaned the victims of crime as “helpless” because they can’t demand stricter gun control laws. “Everyone must accept the risk that a shooting may occur at any time anywhere,” the Global Times asserted.

“The US acts as the world’s guard but turns a blind eye to its own human rights defects. People are forced to get used to a US where both modern and barbarous elements entangle in a weird way,” the editorial concluded, coming back around to the point of the exercise, namely the CCP’s contention that Westerners who criticize its appalling human rights record are hypocrites.

As usual, Chinese state media demonstrated its familiarity with the arguments of the American Left in its latest gun control broadside, from muttering about “interest groups” that benefit from private gun ownership to claiming that gun rights advocates think mass shootings are “the price a democratic country must pay and should not be viewed as a serious governance flaw.” 

Left unmentioned is that China is no stranger to violent crime, despite all its praise for authoritarian power — it just puts considerable effort into burying crime reports to make itself appear more placid. China even has school massacres, the most recent of which occurred in September.

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