Some actual things you could do for gun control stuff

Most people would probably agree to some formation of the following:

Someone ought to be able to own a firearm to protect their home and family. And all of these horrible shootings that keep happening are awful, and we should try to prevent them from happening. We can’t stop them all, but we can at least try to make it more difficult for them to happen.

And if you do agree with that, here’s my proposal:

Background-checks. Yes, even for private sales. In an era of $100 smart-phones, there’s a way to do it. When you sell a car, someone has to fill in or file a registration. It’s not unreasonable.

One-way database. In the same way you can have a ‘hash function’ which can map from source data to a hash value (But *not* backwards!), you should be able to map from serial numbers to people. But not the other way around. If you really need to see if someone has a firearm, you can get a warrant to search their house. But if a gun is used in a crime, and the serial number can be read off it, we need to be able to figure out who that gun belongs to. I would want to appoint some kind of privacy advocate to protect this data as well. The idea of the cops running around after Hurricane Katrina happened, confiscating legal firearms of civilians is something that should be prevented from even happening, and made even more terribly illegal than it was already.

Providing a firearm to someone who then commits a crime means you are an accessory. And should be criminally charged. Improper storage or securing of ones firearm(s) which are then used in crime mean you are negligent, or possibly an accessory.

And yes, that means if you ‘lose’ or have your firearm stolen, you need to report it. And that means if you didn’t secure it you can be charged. And that means you need to check in on your firearm every, say, 6 months or so – no saying “Oh, I forgot I had it! Haven’t looked at where I keep it in a while…”

That also means when you’re doing tearful press conferences about how no one knew that your kid could go shoot up a school, it’s likely you’ll be wearing prison-orange. Because you probably weren’t properly storing your firearms. Because if you were, maybe your kid would’ve had a harder time shooting up that school?

As for the definitions of what these things are? (How would a ‘household firearm’ work? What does ‘properly stored’ entail? Etc.) I don’t know and I think that’s probably an important place for us to get to. But let’s start a conversation here.

What about firearm types? I don’t care about that. AR-15 or AK-47 or simple 9mm Glock. Honestly, that’s the wrong road to go down. The right road to go down is stopping people who shouldn’t be able to buy guns managing from buying or acquiring them somehow. And making gun-owners responsible for secure and safe storage of their firearms. That, honestly, is not unreasonable.

15 thoughts on “Some actual things you could do for gun control stuff”

  1. This is probably the first sane, acceptable argument for gun control that I can get behind. I didn't know people like you existed.

  2. It was cool until you held people who lost guns liable. If your gun is locked up and someone steals it BUT you don't know you should not be held liable for what they do with it. Also since when am I responsible for other peoples criminal activity. Thats like saying a women should be held responsible for being raped if she did not cover her body properly. If someone decides to steal my stuff I should never, ever be responsible for what they do with it.

  3. Why does gun ownership need to be anonymous? In many instances, a vehicle can do as much harm as a firearm and you need to register and re-register those every couple of years.

  4. What I'm trying to say is that if you do a bad job of being a responsible firearm owner and adequately securing your firearms, you should be held liable. We can debate what "adequate" means; I'm fine with that. And if you adequately safeguard and your gun gets stolen, you have to report it.

  5. Not anonymous; just one-way lookup. If you look up "Smith & Wesson s/n 123456789" you should get a name and address. But you can't say "Show me all registered firearms in New Orleans." Technically by design, and policy-wise, as administered by the privacy advocate.

    For the same reason the government can't look up how you voted. They don't need to know that, and only bad can come of it.

  6. I think it's interesting that the proposal seems too strong to some people, and too weak to others. That sounds to me like it could be a good starting point for discussion!

  7. I'd be 100% for all of this and I own several guns and have a concealed carry permit. In PA at least, you are supposed to do background checks even for private sales of handguns, but I don't know what the penalty would be for not doing it.

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  9. The problem isn't just conservatives trying to score points by falsely linking gun control to massacres. It's also liberals who aren't paying enough attention and think they're saying something about Wounded Knee.

  10. Sane and to the point. Its exactly like that in Switzerland where I hail from, with the exception of the one way hash (which I think is a very good idea). Here the Police does know what arms I own. I am obliged to store them safely. If I don’t, its my neck. If my house gets burgled and they are stolen, I must report it, or its my neck. If I stored them improperly, like leave them lying around in the living room, and was burgled it would also be my neck. If they were secured with a fingerprint lock and stored in my nightstand’s (unlocked) drawer, I would be OK. I am only allowed to remove them from my house for transport to the range, gunsmith, etc (unless I had a license to carry – which is very hard to get). I am not allowed to have them in the car unless I transport them (as the car is not an extension of the house in this country). When I transport them they have to be unloaded. But at home, its all on me, but I do have to take reasonable precautions of improper use. Just thought I share this.

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