A December 28 New York Times editorial declares Europe more courageous than the U.S., when it comes to putting more firearm limitations on law-abiding citizens in the wake of terror attacks.
The central focus of the editorial is a body of new gun controls which come up for a final vote next year.
According to the NYT, the new controls will “extend bans on semiautomatic assault weapons to more models, institute medical checks for gun buyers, tighten sales on the internet and track the resale of guns to foil black-market dealers.” Of course, many of these controls already exist in European nations like France, where would-be gun buyers are already required to “pass a background check which considers criminal, mental health and health,” according to GunPolicy.org. These checks failed to stop the January 7, 2015, firearm-based attack on Charlie Hebdo and the November 13, 2015 firearm-based Paris terror attack. These two attacks combined resulted in the deaths of 142 innocents and there is no reason to believe that expanding France’s background check system to the whole of Europe will somehow make a difference in the behavior of criminals and terrorists.
Yet the NYT is elated over the gun control expansion. The editorial board opines, “Europe’s move against high-powered weapons adapted from the battlefield stands in contrast to the evasiveness of Washington political leaders on the obvious need for more gun control.”
The editorial board does not mention the draconian gun bans and registration schemes that swept through European nations in the late 20th century nor the steady march of new gun controls that followed those bans and schemes. The board does not stop to ask why the bans themselves failed so miserably that they must now be extended and why universal background checks–so lauded by leftists in the U.S.–have proved to be no hindrance to a determined attacker. (The same lesson can be learned in the U.S. where states with universal background checks–states like California, Colorado, and Washington state–have witnessed numerous high profile attacks and mass shootings with the background checks in place.)
Yet the NYT finds Europe more courageous and suggests their adoption of gun controls that have already failed is proof of a “braver stance” than witnessed in the U.S.
AWR Hawkins is the Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and host of “Bullets with AWR Hawkins,” a Breitbart News podcast. He is also the political analyst for Armed American Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.