I’m fine with gun-free zones. Several places should require citizens to forgo their right to bear arms if they desire entry. Courts, for example, or police stations and jails. But for all of those places, the authority requiring that the zone be gun-free is also required to make sure that no guns can enter, through the use of metal detectors, screening, and other techniques. Even the staunchest second amendment supporter understands the reasons why people shouldn’t be allowed to carry in such places as Congress, for example.
But movie theaters?
When the government requires that such a place be held gun-free, they should also be required to take reasonable steps to ensure that it remain so, and that burden should be on the government, not the proprietor of the business. To make such laws and assume that people will follow them greatly affects the law-abiding populace, and leaves them vulnerable to attack from those criminals who simply do not care what laws have been enacted. Worse, for a criminal, these places become the safest targets; a sure bet that their victims will be unlikely to be able to defend themselves.
Gun control laws in this country have a very sordid history. I won’t go into the darkness of our distant past, but even the more recent laws, made with good intentions, were nearly always made as an ill-advised, knee-jerk reaction to an unforseen event. These laws were never thought through, and they have backfired more often than not. This can easily be shown to be true. In areas with the strictest gun control, violent crime rates have risen even higher than they already were, while areas that have issued more concealed carry permits see violent crime reductions.
Gun control advocates almost always revert to pointing out other countries (intentionally ignoring Switzerland), where violent crime is lower because guns are completely banned. We are NOT those other countries. Guns will never be banned here, and if the liberal goal of banning all guns were somehow reached, it would be a disaster for all of us. We’ve all seen how well prohibition has worked for drugs. Our porous borders alone would allow for a tide of guns to come into the country via the black market, were any such ban in place. This, in effect, would turn the entire country into a gun-free zone and, since the government would be unable to assure us that no guns are getting in, it would leave us all as soft targets for criminals.
As a country, we have got to start taking a more level-headed approach to dealing with crime and the misery it often leaves in its wake. We can no longer afford to react emotionally, against logic, and create laws that result with compounded tragedies.
Those are the real lessons that should be learned from the recent Aurora tragedy.