I used to belong to a forum devoted to the SF/Fantasy literature genre in which a Republican activist once told me that if we (meaning Progressives/Liberals) wanted to enact gun regulations, we should offer something in compromise.  I've been thinking about this for some time now, that if we are going to be passing laws restricting the rights of one group in the name of public safety, we should begin passing laws that affect other groups -- also in the name of public safety.  Well, I'd say that all the recent laws restricting access to abortion and voting would more than adequately suffice for compromise, so I am proposing the following changes to gun regulations with a brief synopsis of why each is important below the "fold":

1.  No gun shops within 30 miles of a School Zone or other educational institution.    The reason for this should be obvious:  since school shootings are such a problem in the US, we need to move the access to guns as far as we can from schools to make it more difficult for someone to buy a gun and use it to shoot their school.  Nevermind that most school shooters already have their guns, or got them illegally some other way, won't somebody think of the children?

2.  All federally licensed gun dealers must take criminology classes and must have passed a forensics ballistics class in order to get or keep a dealership license.  Who better to help law enforcement track down rogue guns but the dealers who will no doubt see some of these guns pass through their inventories?  By having an understanding of ballistics and criminology, gun dealers can aid law enforcement officers in tracking down straw sales and stolen weapons.

3.  All gun buyers must be shown images of gunshot victims before they can buy a gun.  The images must be described to them if they choose not to look.  If women are forced to undergo transvaginal ultrasounds, and have said ultrasound described to them whether they want to or not, then gun buyers must be forced to witness the carnage caused by guns, and have the victims' wounds described to them if they can't bear to look.

4.  All licensed gun owners must have EMT training.  Again, this is a matter of safety.  Since guns are accidentally discharged, sometimes with fatal results, on a daily basis, then all gun owners must be certified EMT workers.  Think how many lives will be saved if the person who accidentally shot his child is able to prevent them from dying from their injuries!

5.  ALL gun sales must be made with credit card or cashier's check.  Since we know that guns are used in so many robberies, it does not make sense for gun buyers to use cash since they could easily be robbed on their way to make the purchase.  This would infringe on their right to own a gun after all!  Therefore, all gun purchases, both at dealerships and in private sales, must be made with a credit card.  If a buyer cannot get a credit card, a cashier's check may be purchased at any bank.  Note that only a cashier's check or credit card will be acceptable forms of payment, no money orders allowed.  Credit cards and cashier's checks have extensive fraud protections, therefore a gun buyer will no longer have to worry about being robbed before they can protect themselves from robbers.

6.  Owning a gun will require a minimum of 20 hours of safety instruction per year in a physical classroom.  Getting a concealed carry license will require 40 hours of instruction (i.e. an additional 20 hours) per year in a physical classroom.  How many stories do we see where someone has accidentally discharged their weapon (usually while "cleaning" it when loaded) and they claimed they were a responsible gun owner?  By staying up to date on the latest safety regulations, including proper handling and storage, gun owners can verify their responsibility with the completion of safety coursework for the duration of the time they own their weapons.  

Of course, I don't expect any of these to be introduced.  Just like I don't expect very many gun owners to go along with these for various reasons.  But I was careful to not restrict the actual owning of guns so as not to run afoul of the hallowed 2nd Amendment, just as the voting and abortion restrictions do not actually infringe on their respective rights.  It would also be childish and immature (IMHO) to propose such laws but that won't stop me from hoping that some good can come of the current trend to suppress rights in the name of public good.

Originally posted to anyman on Wed Nov 13, 2013 at 10:25 AM PST.

Also republished by Firearms Law and Policy.

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