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Common Sense and Sensibility

11 Apr

Common Sense and Sensibility

At least 31,940 people died from gun injuries in 2011.

34,367 people died from Motor vehicle accidents  in 2011.

No one knows exactly how many cars there are in America But, there are approximately 250 million registered vehicles on the road today. That figure includes all types of vehicles and approximately 16 million new vehicles are sold annually.

No one knows the exact number of firearms owned by private citizens in the US but In 1995, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives estimated that there were about 223 million firearms owned by individuals. It’s been almost 20 years since then and that number has surely increased. There can be no definitive answer however, because most states don’t require registration.

But it can be construed that collecting automobiles and firearms are two of America’s most famous and popular pastimes and that they are also equally as dangerous and deadly to not only the Americans that purchase and use them but also to Americans who do not.

To which I submit that the uniform regulation of automobiles in this country has long been in practice and yet has made little if any impact on the availability of automobiles to Americans. We require their registration and visible license plates that allow law enforcement officials to identify the owner immediately with the use of a computer database.

Automobile users must be of legal age and properly licensed. They must take a written test and a practical test to demonstrate that they know how to use the vehicle. They must even take an eye test to prove that they can see where it is they want to go.

They must be able to prove citizenship and residency and purchase mandatory liability insurance in the event that their automobile is responsible for damage to another’s property or person.

We even have federal rules and regulations that apply to the conduct of the driver and occupants of the vehicle requiring the use of seat belts (for their own protection) and limiting the use of phones and alcoholic beverages etc.. inside the vehicle.

We even require users to seek different and additional licenses and take additional competency classes and tests if they desire to use vehicles not considered to be average automobiles (i.e. motor cycles and trucks)

And if a licensed driver abuses or misuses their vehicle…it can be taken from them and they can have their license to use a vehicle suspended or revoked indefinitely.

And yet with all of this regulation automobiles have not been confiscated en mass and Americans have not lost their right to purchase an automobile, nor purchase as many as they would like, nor purchase whatever kind of vehicle they would like. And our extreme regulation of automobiles has not caused us to be  invaded by other countries nor has it led to the takeover of our country by a communist, fascist or totalitarian regime.

And do only outlaws now drive cars?

The current gun control proposals before the House and Senate ask Congress to  expand background checks, improve school safety and combat gun trafficking.

These are bad things? These proposals will sound the death knell for our Constitution? Background checks, school safety and trying to stop gun trafficking is the slippery slope that leads to… where?

…perhaps a better life for our children?

Recent statistics show that there were over 16 million gun applications in 2012. If they were all approved, that would be enough weapons to stock a member of NATO’s armed forces nearly five times over. The system has received over 156 million applications since 1998 and the US has the highest gun ownership rate in the world.

And yet gun advocates and owners are still angry, outraged, belligerent and confrontational even though no government entity  in the history of the United States has ever asked for them to give their guns or their rights to own them, back.

All I know is…If they showed up for their driver’s license and road test with all that anger and attitude…the motor vehicle officer probably wouldn’t give them one until they learned how to show and demonstrate the proper appreciation, reverence and respect for the deadly weapon they were asking to have access to.

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