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View Diary: Firearms should be regulated like cars (166 comments)

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  •  Something else--liability insurance (23+ / 0-)

    If you have to buy insurance for a car, why shouldn't you be required to buy insurance for a gun?

    It would almost certainly cut down on straw purchases, and also eliminate what little excuse gun owners have for not knowing where their guns are kept.

    Romney-Ryan: America's Rollback Team

    by Christian Dem in NC on Fri Jan 04, 2013 at 03:51:09 PM PST

    •  Your suggestion is actually an excellent one (11+ / 0-)

      In fact, I think it can form almost the entire basis of a regulatory scheme. How to implement it and why is the subject of a diary I JUST published.

      http://www.dailykos.com/...

    •  you don't have to buy insurance unless (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      VClib, Joy of Fishes, ban nock

      you're going on public roads.

      •  Actually if you're going to get a loan on a car (11+ / 0-)

        most lenders require insurance to protect their collateral, regardless of whether it is driven on public roads or not. Also the insurance is to protect YOU, not the roads. Even on a private estate, liability insurance is important if you hit someone.

        Its only required by law if you drive on public roads.

        •  actually, that's not what I said. (5+ / 0-)

          the author wants gun laws mirror cars? fine. no federal registration, and no state regulation or registration at all unless its brought on public property.

          •  No, but we do have a system for insurance (6+ / 0-)

            that works pretty well for most cars.

            Honestly, if a gun lives in a private safe and never comes onto public land, is it really a problem?

            I actually think that a variant of what the author is proposing could work.

            •  I don't think a car needs to be insured and a (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              johnny wurster, gerrilea

              person doesn't need to be licensed to carry it on public roads. I see them all the time.

              There are just about now laws or requirements at all for carrying a car on public roads. As long as it's attached to whatever you are carrying it with and you are carrying it with a trailer of suitable capacity, you're good.

              How big is your personal carbon footprint?

              by ban nock on Fri Jan 04, 2013 at 06:15:15 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Well, lets add this into the mix: Homeowner's ins. (7+ / 0-)

                IF you have a mortgage, you MUST have insurance. Why? To protect the holder of the paper if the home is lost to accident.

                That's a material thing that isn't used to harm another (you don't take a house to a gun fight).

                Yet in the case of weapons, they not only STEAL MONEY from someone when they are killed (their life's net worth, particularly in the case of a bread winner), they steal the life itself.

                It seems to me if we are going to force insurance for inanimate things not used to harm, we should insure for things MADE to harm.

                202-224-3121 to Congress in D.C. USE it! You can tell how big a person is by what it takes to discourage them. "We're not perfect, but they're nuts."--Barney Frank 01/02/2012

                by cany on Fri Jan 04, 2013 at 06:53:26 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Bad example (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Remembering Jello

                  Whether I need title insurance or not is at the discretion of the mortgage giver, a private decision, not a matter of law.

                  We can have change for the better.

                  by phillies on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 03:34:23 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Not title insurance, homeowners' insurance (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    ebrann, radical simplicity

                    Title insurance is only to make sure the house is really mine and the bank's, in the event I go to sell it (title insurance is a must with all the foreclosures these days - my HOA foreclosed on a home 3 years ago and the idiots at the bank keep trying to serve the non-existent homeowner, because somebody STILL hasn't updated the title work - stupid because in public records it clearly shows the HOA is the owner).  

                    I'm required to carry liability, property and windstorm by my mortgage company - it protects me if somebody is injured on my property and protects the asset that I own with the bank in the event of fire or hurricane, so we can rebuild it and they get to keep collecting their mortgage payments.  

                    My mother has no mortgage, but I keep liability, property and sinkhole insurance on her house.  My insurance is $3,000 / year, her's is $800 / year (windstorm is the difference).  

                    If somebody trips and falls while working in / on my house or her house (or some crazy golfer beans one of guests in the backyard and knocks them out), our liability coverage takes care of any potential claim (and in Florida, one of the "sue me" states, you better believe a suit would be filed, even by the best of friends).

                    My dad owned two .38s and a shotgun (I have them now).  He had a CC permit, I do not.  I keep the .38s in a locked box, hidden in a "safe pocket" in my house (that's not locked but it requires moving a large item and taking out a hidden door to get to it).  I don't need to get to them quickly and I don't want anybody else to get to them easily.  My liability insurance is a little bit higher than it was before I brought them home and registered them in my name after he passed away.  My mom's GL went down a little bit after I cancelled his CC permit and removed them from her house.  The difference is less than $50 for each of us.  

                    My brother in law (an Iraq vet) used to work at a gun shop, before he got on with the Fire Department.  He told me I should trade in the .38s for a Lady Glock.  I do not feel the need.  I don't foresee ever using them - probably should just sell them, but since I can't guarantee that the registration would be updated, I don't want one of them being used in a robbery and coming back to me.  So I just keep them locked away where they can't be used against me physically or theoretically via paperwork / lawsuit.  

                    "Focusing your life solely on making a buck shows a certain poverty of ambition. It asks too little of yourself. Because it's only when you hitch your wagon to something larger than yourself that you realize your true potential." - Barack Obama

                    by Ricochet67 on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 05:54:03 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                •  Errr... the mortgage holder has the right to (0+ / 0-)

                  ensure that if the property they are still owed money for is destroyed, they can collect the money owed...

                  I really don't see the parallel with gun ownership here, unless someone has to take out a mortgage on a gun...

          •  So.... (4+ / 0-)

            You buy your gun at a store...then it goes on public property to get to your bunker..Therefore the gun was on public property ...register and insure...

            Do something...marinedefenders.com

            by profewalt on Fri Jan 04, 2013 at 04:33:06 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  Oh good grief. This is silly. (7+ / 0-)

            Guns aren't cars.

            Sometimes this acts to the bennifit of gun owners.

            For example, just like some miniscule number of car owners might benifit from never driving their cars on public roads, so too gun owners would benifit by being not being required to have their guns equipped with seat belts and air bags.

            Talking about regulating guns like other consumer products such as cars doesn't have to mean engaging in silliness.

            It just means that we recognize that guns are dangerous consumer products.

          •  How about this (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            DefendOurConstitution

            guns don't need insurance unless their range is such that the bullet can reach public areas.

            If you use them in the middle of a huge ranch ... no insurance.

            If you can shoot them up in the air and the bullet can land in a public place possibly injuring someone then liability insurance is necessary.

            Politics is the entertainment branch of industry. Frank Zappa

            by Da Rock on Fri Jan 04, 2013 at 09:53:52 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  and no licenses to own (0+ / 0-)

            My mom inherited my dad's car, and learned how to drive at a later date.

            We can have change for the better.

            by phillies on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 03:33:03 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

      •  You're talking about a tiny fraction of the use (6+ / 0-)

        of vehicles.  Sure there may be farm vehicles but they're far and away the minority of cars being used.  I'd guess 99% of vehicles travel on public roads at some point, and that would include harvesters, road graders, and other machinery that primarily doesn't work on roads.

      •  In OK (7+ / 0-)

        You do have to have "off road" or "black tag" insurance on any autos that aren't driven on the roads. Even if it's in pieces, and undrivable, you still need to tag it, pay taxes on it, and maintain insurance on it.

        I just renewed the black tag (for a 1940 something jeep that's being restored, and is currently in pieces scattered between 4 households) and paid up a year's worth of insurance on it (combined, it was about $100).

        It may be different in other states.

        All knowledge is worth having. Check out OctopodiCon to support steampunk learning and fun. Also, on DKos, check out the Itzl Alert Network.

        by Noddy on Fri Jan 04, 2013 at 06:01:38 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  No need for any sort of tag here (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          PavePusher, VClib, happymisanthropy

          put it on a trailer and move it wherever you want. Legal carry.

          How big is your personal carbon footprint?

          by ban nock on Fri Jan 04, 2013 at 06:18:22 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  TX requires tags for cars (3+ / 0-)

          and to get tags you must prove insurance coverage (by VIN).

          However, if the car does not get driven on a public road or street with an invalid registration (including down to buy the new tags -- and yes, this can be a huge pain in rural places) you are not subject to a fine or payment for registrations in the year(s) that the car is not used on the highway. Have to get the insurance coverage before you get the tags.

          Similar arrangements with firearms might be workable, but I'm not anything like engineer enough to figure out how they'd be written so as not to infringe the 2nd amendment (affordability, among other considerations; and if you're a keeper of antiques or a collector, that affordability factor hops up by an order of magnitude, now, for cars; if you did the same thing for firearms, what would be the result?).

          LBJ, Lady Bird, Anne Richards, Barbara Jordan, Sully Sullenberger, Ike, Drew Brees, Molly Ivins --Texas is no Bush league! -7.50,-5.59

          by BlackSheep1 on Fri Jan 04, 2013 at 06:21:35 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Car Insurance / Gun Insurance (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            ColoTim, caul

            Not many uninsured drivers in British Columbia (left coast of Canada).

            The liability insurance company is a quasi-governmental agency. The only way to get the annual license tab is to buy insurance.

            In the states, an automobile can't be conceal carry, and you can't hide it in a desk drawer. So enforcing an insurance requirement would be quite a task.

          •  if you're going on public roads, (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            PavePusher, VClib, happymisanthropy

            sure, you need tags and insurance.

            •  I have to prove my car insurance covers any (2+ / 0-)

              trailer I pull too in order to get tags for my trailer, which sits most of the time. I have a little popup camper (currently needing repair) and a 6x12 utility hauler that helps move the kids to/from new jobs, etc. Those trailers sit a lot.

              But the tags are cheaper for them than the fine for getting caught without....and I can renew tags in about 20 minutes' time, usually, so it's not that big a hassle.

              LBJ, Lady Bird, Anne Richards, Barbara Jordan, Sully Sullenberger, Ike, Drew Brees, Molly Ivins --Texas is no Bush league! -7.50,-5.59

              by BlackSheep1 on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 10:10:02 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

        •  no you don't, noddy. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          VClib

          you're paying a reduced fee so that you don't have to pay a higher fee if you deregister and then reregister.

          you do not have to register, though.  tell me your state and I'll show you exactly what the law says.

          •  here's the insurance section (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            VClib

            A. Every owner of a motor vehicle which is not used upon the public highways or public streets shall be exempt from the provisions of the Compulsory Insurance Law if the owner of the vehicle has filed an affidavit with the appropriate motor license agent which states that the vehicle shall not be driven upon the public highways or public streets during the uninsured period.

            motor vehicles law 7-607

            •  So, an affidavit has to be filed (0+ / 0-)

              And it probably has details about the vehicle (year, make, model, VIN).  

              So why not have gun owners, file an affidavit stating that they do not need insurance because their gun(s), listed by make, model, serial number, are kept in a secure, private location and are not taken on to public lands?  

              They would need to report any stolen guns, to protect themselves because they had no insurance on it and if it's used in a crime, it will come back to them unless they report it.  

              "Focusing your life solely on making a buck shows a certain poverty of ambition. It asks too little of yourself. Because it's only when you hitch your wagon to something larger than yourself that you realize your true potential." - Barack Obama

              by Ricochet67 on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 06:00:29 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Ricochet - gun registration isn't going to pass (0+ / 0-)

                in the 113th Congress, that's a line in the sand for gun advocates. We may see an assault weapons and large magazine ban (only on new sales), some improvement on the private sale exemption from background checks (often mistakenly termed "the gun show loophole"), and a better background check system. If we got all of that past the House, and signed into law, it would be a huge win for gun control. However, I am not sure we can pass all of that.

                "let's talk about that"

                by VClib on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 07:04:27 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Gotta start somewhere (3+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  ebrann, a2nite, radical simplicity

                  Let's get legislation passed first that everybody seems to be in favor of (no new assault weapons and large magazines - something like 74% of gun owners are OK with that).  Background checks also seem to be heavily favored, including the gun show "loophole" closure, so go for that.  Extended waiting periods for a THOROUGH background check - up to 30 days even - a lot of people don't seem to mind that either.  It's the ones who can't pass an intensive background check that are against it - the very people that we need to use it for.  

                  As far as I'm concerned, those who doth protest too much, are probably the people mostly likely to be denied.  

                  If you're an honest person, with nothing to hide, there's no reason to not want a thorough check before you get your permit, as long as the same applies to all applicants.  It's the only fair way.  

                  At the same time, if we can get those 3 things, we really need to work on enforcing the laws already on the books against people who use guns in a crime or to terrorize others - get busted for domestic abuse and you have a gun in the house?  Too bad, it gets taken.  After you pass anger management, get a mental health assessment, etc. you can apply to get your gun back, as if it was a new gun and go through the process above.  

                  If you inherit guns from a relative (hunters and others), and the deceased had a permit or hunting licenses, even if their guns were not registered, the heir needs to go get their own permit or licenses and register them.  No free passing down of guns.  I did this with my dad's 3 guns - he had a permit and 2 of them were registered with the county.  I didn't get a permit, but I did register them (all 3) in my own name, so they know I have them in my house.  Registration is easy in Florida, getting a permit is also relatively easy, but I don't want one.  I don't intend to carry them around or have them in my car like dad did.  I might take them to a gun buy back (they're .38s, not Glocks or anything like that), but I'd want to be damn sure they were not re-sold with my name still linked to them.  

                  It will take time, but eventually we'd get a lot of guns off the street being held by the angry and unstable.  Start gun & high cap magazine buy backs - some people, no matter how pro-gun they are, are willing to do this - recent events that triggered some towns to do buy backs have had pretty positive results.

                  A small step is better than none at all.  Kind of like the ACA - can't get 100% public option, but what we have is a start and it's better than nothing.  As time passes, it will be tweaked until I think we will finally actually have Medicare for All.  Same thing with gun registration - start somewhere and eventually, it will cover everything.  

                  "Focusing your life solely on making a buck shows a certain poverty of ambition. It asks too little of yourself. Because it's only when you hitch your wagon to something larger than yourself that you realize your true potential." - Barack Obama

                  by Ricochet67 on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 08:29:19 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

          •  I'm not ging to argue with you (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            radical simplicity

            I live here, I know what I have to pay. I know what I get fined and ticketed for.

            All knowledge is worth having. Check out OctopodiCon to support steampunk learning and fun. Also, on DKos, check out the Itzl Alert Network.

            by Noddy on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 06:37:03 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

    •  I wish I had a dollar for every time (20+ / 0-)

      I had this interview with a local citizen:

      Me:  How are you doing today, Mr. Jones?  Tell me, how did you get to my office today?

      Mr. Jones: I drove.

      Me:  Do you have a current and valid drivers license, and may I please see it?

      Mr. Jones:  I ain't got one.

      Me: How long have you been driving without a license?

      Mr. Jones:  I don't rightly remember.  I think they took 'em about 1986.  It might have been 1987 or so, I don't rightly remember exactly when they took 'em.

      Me: What did they take your license for?

      Mr. Jones: I had a DUI and no insurance.

      Me: If you got all that straightened out, how much do you owe the county?

      Mr. Jones:  Probably about $20,000 or so, I don't know exactly.  

      Me:  How many DUIs have you gotten?

      Mr. Jones: I don't rightly recollect right now.  Quite a few.

      Me:  Have you been without insurance since 1986?

      Mr. Jones: I ain't never had no insurance.  (This is a man in his 60s).  

      Me:  Aren't you concerned about going to jail?

      Mr. Jones: They treat me all right down there.  I do my thirty days and they let me go.

      Good luck on making insurance mandatory.

      The general who wins the battle makes many calculations in his temple before the battle is fought. The general who loses makes but few calculations beforehand. - Sun Tzu

      by Otteray Scribe on Fri Jan 04, 2013 at 04:04:26 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Heh. (6+ / 0-)

        There are some states that would string you up form an overpass with a story like that.



        Denial is a drug.

        by Pluto on Fri Jan 04, 2013 at 04:08:07 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Some states maybe, (10+ / 0-)

          but this is typical of mostly rural states (and counties).  They literally do not have room at the jail for characters like this, and when overcrowding gets too bad, the judge fines them and lets them go on their own recognizance.  Then the fine never gets paid because the offender has no job and is on SSI or Social Security.

          The general who wins the battle makes many calculations in his temple before the battle is fought. The general who loses makes but few calculations beforehand. - Sun Tzu

          by Otteray Scribe on Fri Jan 04, 2013 at 04:12:16 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Sounds pretty sweet, to tell you the truth. (8+ / 0-)



            Denial is a drug.

            by Pluto on Fri Jan 04, 2013 at 04:25:32 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  I dunno about that, but a rec for making me grin. (7+ / 0-)

              I am probably going to go to hell for that.

              The general who wins the battle makes many calculations in his temple before the battle is fought. The general who loses makes but few calculations beforehand. - Sun Tzu

              by Otteray Scribe on Fri Jan 04, 2013 at 04:34:52 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  I hope not. :) (7+ / 0-)

                WI had light penalties for unlicensed drivers up to very recently.  If memory serves, the law was changed following several instances of unlicensed drivers causing death and injury, and the change was supported by law enforcement.  Under the new law:  

                … a person convicted of OWL [operating without license] or OWS [operating while suspended] who, in the course of the violation, causes great bodily harm to another person: 1) must forfeit not less than $5,000 nor more than $7,500 if, at the time of the violation, the person did not know, respectively, that he or she did not possess a valid operator's license or that his or her operating privilege was suspended; or 2) is guilty of a Class I felony if the person knew.  A Class I felony is punishable by…  [continues with descriptions of fines and prison terms]
                https://docs.legis.wisconsin.gov/...  (bolding mine)
                A combination of stronger licensing laws & insurance requirements might not the whole solution for reducing gun violence, but I think they should be explored, along with the ideas that 43north and some others have put forward.

                I always prefer to believe the best of everybody, it saves so much trouble.

                by Joy of Fishes on Fri Jan 04, 2013 at 05:36:52 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  It is actually very easy to get a substantial (7+ / 0-)

                  liability insurance policy for firearm accidents.  Join the NRA.  Annual dues are not that expensive.  However, there is no insurance for sale anywhere for any price that covers illegal acts.  

                  Passing a mandatory insurance law is a guaranteed way to swell the already large ranks of the NRA.  

                  The general who wins the battle makes many calculations in his temple before the battle is fought. The general who loses makes but few calculations beforehand. - Sun Tzu

                  by Otteray Scribe on Fri Jan 04, 2013 at 06:31:48 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  I'm not worried ... (5+ / 0-)

                    ... about the NRA right now.  Perhaps I would be if I knew more.  But at this point I am thinking that the NRA would be happy with having increased demand for membership and insurance because it brings in more money, making them part of the solution.  Change in mix of membership could shift their focus back to safety and education.  And they surely would not be the only player - other insurers will step in to meet demand.  

                    As for illegal acts, we have criminal laws & we can build on programs that already exist, such as crime victim compensation funds.    

                    I am sure there are dozens of reasons any particular idea might not be feasible.  But I think we can find a solution if we work together.

                    Take care, OS.  It's always good to see you in these threads.

                    I always prefer to believe the best of everybody, it saves so much trouble.

                    by Joy of Fishes on Fri Jan 04, 2013 at 07:29:07 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  JoF, I was a life member until the crazies (6+ / 0-)

                      took over about thirty or so years ago. That was when I cancelled my membership. I can tell you that the main danger to the progressive cause will be the non-stop right wing propaganda mailings that go out to all members.  Some of it is very clever and appeals to people's deepest fears.  Those folks on the fence or who are naive will be sucked into the whirlpool of right wing nuttiness.  I am not in favor of anything that will push people to join the NRA.  There is far more risk of losing Dem votes than changing the organization.

                      The general who wins the battle makes many calculations in his temple before the battle is fought. The general who loses makes but few calculations beforehand. - Sun Tzu

                      by Otteray Scribe on Fri Jan 04, 2013 at 07:43:34 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

          •  There is an amusing German solution (4+ / 0-)

            They take the car as evidence, and hold it while your license is suspended.  After all, they need proof that you were driving the car.

            If it was the family car, and the teenager lost daddy's car, well, that is a purely family matter.

            We can have change for the better.

            by phillies on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 03:38:06 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Around here, you can get some rustbucket (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              happymisanthropy, Pluto

              for anywhere from two to five hundred dollars.  If you go by the county impound yard, the place is full of them.  And people actually buy them at the Sheriff's annual auction.  Guess what happens to them then?

              The general who wins the battle makes many calculations in his temple before the battle is fought. The general who loses makes but few calculations beforehand. - Sun Tzu

              by Otteray Scribe on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 01:21:57 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

      •  No way in California (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Otteray Scribe, Joy of Fishes

        The fine's 5K for a DUI here with a year suspended license and three year's probation plus mandatory classes once per week for a year about alcohol safety.

        The limit's .08.

        By your second or third DUI, they often will sentence you for it.

        They are not forgiving here, not one bit.

        Click the ♥ to join us on the Black Kos front porch to review news & views written from a black pov - everyone is welcome.

        by mahakali overdrive on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 09:05:03 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  I am not (0+ / 0-)

      required to buy insurance for a car.

      I am only required to buy insurance for a car that I am going to drive on public roads or public ways, which in MA include many "private" roads, and which I have therefore licensed.  

      Also, to own a car and have all those papers so that the car may be driven on my street,

      I do not need a driver's license.

      I just can't be the one driving it.

      We can have change for the better.

      by phillies on Sat Jan 05, 2013 at 03:31:47 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

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