I just can't get the Newtown gun tragedy out of my mind, and have been doing a lot of thinking, and came up with an idea. See what you think.
We've all heard of the pink guns manufacturers have used to appeal to women buyers.
I also read discussions on whether military-style weapons are actually any more dangerous than conventional hunting rifles. I think they are, simply because people prone to violence are attracted to the image that comes with military styling. In fact, there's a big business in accessories to customize guns, often to make them look more military.
Follow me over the fold to see where these 2 ideas lead.
I want to ban high capacity magazines, and everything designed primarily for killing people. But with a Republican-controlled House, and a right-leaning Supreme Court that has already struck down gun control laws (D.C. v. Heller, etc.), I think we may have a very difficult time getting anything passed.
So what else to do.
This doesn't appear to infringe on the 2nd Amendment at all. But what does it do?
- It makes guns easier to spot, which may help people spot an attacker sooner.
- It makes it easier to tell who's not the police in a confrontation (which may include officers not in uniform).
- It also makes repurposing police equipment for civilian use more difficult.
The intention is to make guns as unappealing as possible to those who have fantasies about acting out military style attacks (kind of like requiring cigarettes to be in plain packages with health warnings). Hopefully this will reduce sales, of the military style weapons especially. If enthusiast magazines are filled with pictures of pink guns, and catalogs have only pink guns, and the local gun store has only pink guns, I think this might dampen the interest of those interested in guns for macho military fantasies. People with these fantasies might be turned off if all they can get is a pink gun. Of course this doesn't do much about all the guns already out there, but we have to start somewhere. Since many of the recent mass shootings have used recently purchased guns, it may not take all that long for this to start having an effect.
For those that want a gun for legal purposes like hunting, target practice or self-defense, a pink gun will work just as well as any other. If anyone tries to recolor their pink gun, that could be an offense (as evidence of an intent to commit a crime).
Is there any danger in making a real gun look more like a toy, by making it pink? Note that toy guns are already marked in orange, so we can't use "Hunter Orange" on real guns. So "Safety Pink" seems perfect (then, I'm not sure whether toy guns should follow, with the exception of that orange barrel marker, or would be better off left other colors). I think the color might actually do more discourage sales, so I think it may have a positive impact. Of course, if it encourages children to play with them it may not (boys might ordinarily be more attracted to guns, but also more turned off by the pink color), but any parent who leaves guns lying around accessible to children is already irresponsible. And I've heard no such concerns about the pink guns already marketed to women.
I can just see the gun rights peoples faces when they're told they can only get pink guns. Hopefully they'll refuse to own a pink gun, and sales will tank. If we propose this, the more negatively they react, the more that means the policy may actually reduce sales. I'm hoping those with macho fantasies of mass killing or those not smart enough to realize that guns are not toys may not be the brightest, and might be most turned off by the un-macho color.
Can you see Dick Cheney out there hunting with a pink gun? Priceless.
I edited this diary to add pictures (above) with an example of what I'm suggesting (though it may be too late for many people to notice). I added the actual Bushmaster ad above that Gawker reports has been running for 2 years (a Bushmaster was used in the Newtown massacre), and the same ad with the gun recolored in pink. I don't know, but even in pink, that gun looks menacing to me.
Note that my rendering of pink may not be the best possible pink. But in real guns also, the industry might not give us an ideal feminine pink, because guns aren't normally painted (but I did find one example that was, a Hello Kitty model). I'm not sure how the guns currently on the market for women are colored, but many guns are "colored" with bluing (using bluing salts); there are other processes, some using ceramic coatings, to make guns in other colors (for example camouflage). I'd guess they could do at least as good as the pink guns currently marketed to women, since they've already demonstrated that capability.