If there’s one thing I know for sure about the gun control debate, it’s that none of the sides are absolutely right.In a country of 350 million people from hundreds of thousands of different cultural backgrounds, you aren’t going to find a solution that appeases everyone. Rather than discuss this point, I’ll direct you to this very well written piece on the complication of legislating gun control.
But that doesn’t mean we can’t take baby steps in one direction or another to at least try to make things a little bit better. I have one such idea for making things just a little bit better.
For the purposes of this discussion, we are going to ignore assault weapons and even hunting rifles. We are going to simply address handguns.
Now, the argument FOR handguns is personal protection. Some people feel a God-given, or 2nd Amendment given, right to bear arms for the purpose of self-preservation. The problem is when people use that purchasing opportunity to go on the attack instead, sneaking into a school or restaurant and rattling off as many shots as they can before using the last one on themselves.
So if the true purpose of a handgun is PROTECTION, what can we do to make it a purely defensive weapon?
The answer, is to make it non-lethal.
A non-lethal handgun could cause immense amounts of pain. It could render an attacker helpless. It might even knock them out. Either way, it would be powerful enough that if you were attacked and got off a couple of shots that hit your assailant, even an MMA fighter would be down long enough that the police could be called, or at least for you to flee to safety.
We could make these guns available anywhere, no background check at all. Shooting someone would be the equivalent of hitting them with a baseball bat and we could treat it as such.
Now sure, you are still mostly defenseless against a group of trained and heavily armored assassins carrying AK-47’s into a French bistro. But you are less likely to get anything ore than a major headache if some guy goes nutso in a movie theater.
We need to get a few minuscule wins if we’re going to get any real compromises underway. Maybe this could be one.