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'God-given' arms absolutes must go page 3
William Dowling's op-ed: Obtaining a gun is too easy in America.

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Date published: 1/13/2013


I am told by one gun-happy Second Amendment thumper that many totalitarian states first gained power by banning guns. Wow. Apparently any attempt to restrict guns must automatically lead to dictatorship. Ignore the multitude of countries that restrict gun access and have not teetered anywhere close to this illogical progression and instead accept that only Hitler or Stalin would deign to restrict your kill-power. I hear the Nazis also taught math to grade schoolers. Surely advanced math must lead to mass submission as well.

We lose nothing when we regulate handguns and assault weapons. Those who argue otherwise are delusional. Many nations peaceably allow for long arms with nowhere near the proportional death toll from gun violence that we accept as normal in America. Four out of five non-criminal handgun incidents not involving the military or law enforcement are accidental shootings. It is therefore four times more likely, if your handgun is used against another person at all, that it will be against an innocent victim rather than an aggressor. Ergo, your gun does not make you or those around you safer. Guns in the home and on the streets simply do not make any of us safer.

But I own a gun. I must be a hypocrite. Well, I disagree. I don't pretend that my gun is for personal or home defense. My rifle is kept disassembled in a locked case with trigger and chamber locks as well. It is not even kept on my premises. It is, along with the ammunition for it, kept in a separate location in a locker at a firearms club. My 4-year-old son could not possibly stumble upon my firearm while searching for his Christmas presents.


I welcome any and all legislation that would require me to justify my ownership, storage, and use of my firearm. Such regulations would protect me, those I love, and my community from irresponsible and dangerous owners. And they would in the long run stave the violence upon the innocent that unrestricted gun proliferation has wrought.

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William Dowling lives in Locust Grove.