Friday, June 17, 2016

Opuscula

I'm in favor
Of gun control -
PROVIDING . . .

CAVEAT: My First Born is a cop and while we often disagree, when it comes to gun control we almost are in complete agreement.

"PROVIDING" WHAT? Providing that the first guns to be controlled are those belonging to criminals.

Meanwhile, politicians of all stripes are getting in front of cameras to stake out their resolute positions on any form of gun control, even the most innocuous, e..g., having a three-day waiting period to acquire a gun for people on a terror/watch list.

UNFORTUNATELY I know of no way to prevent criminals from acquiring guns illegally. It is relatively easy, albeit sometimes expensive, to buy on the black market assault rifles with 30-round clips and semi-automatic pistols with 15 round clips; it is possible to buy multiple clips (magazines) and ammunition in 1,000-round lots.

According to a Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) agent, most illegally obtained guns come from inside the U.S., not, as some might suspect, from Mexico.

It is unfortunate that law enforcement cannot seem to prevent people on a government threat list from buying the same gear legally. As with the Muslims who carried out the 9-11-2001 attacks, one government agency won't talk with another agency; protecting their own turf at the expense of the citizens.

The guns used in San Bernardino, Sandy Hook, and Orlando all were "more or less" legally acquired. The weapons used in San Bernardino and in the Columbine shooting (Littleton, Colorado) were "semi-legal"; an adult bought the weapons - a "straw purchase" - and gave (sold) them to the shooters.

ON THE OTHER HAND guns , while "convenient" for terrorists and other crazies, are not the only weapon options. Knives often are the weapons of choice for personal attacks. Knives are popular worldwide and everything from a steak knife to a Bowie knife is easily obtainable.

Bombs - made from readily available materials - also are an option for terrorists around the world. The Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in downtown Oklahoma City was brought down, leaving 168 people dead and hundreds more injured when a diesel fuel-and-fertilizer bomb inside a box truck exploded. The bomber was mad at the U.S. government.

The website infoplease lists bomb-bearing vehicles from 1920. In Israel, Muslim terrorists angered PETA by sending a bomb-laden donkey to slaughter Israelis. PETA has less regard for the human lives lost than for the animal. A Wikipedia entry titled Animal-borne bomb attacks lists "incidents" where animals were used, or proposed for use, against an enemy.

According to the Boston Globe, “The Marathon bombs were constructed using improvised fuses made from Christmas lights and improvised, remote-control detonators fashioned from model car parts,” prosecutors wrote.
Also, prosecutors said, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev and his brother, Tamerlan Tsarnaev, appear to have crushed and emptied fireworks containing black powder to make explosive fuel for the bombs. Three people, including a child, were murdered and more than 260 others wounded.

A Wikipedia entry notes that Pressure cooker bombs have been used in a number of attacks in the 21st century. Among them have been the 2006 Mumbai train bombings, 2010 Stockholm bombings (failed to explode), the 2010 Times Square car bombing attempt (failed to explode), and the 2013 Boston Marathon bombings.
On Canada Day 2013, pressure cooker bombs failed to explode at the Parliament Building in Victoria, British Columbia.

In Israel, terrorists from the Palestinian Authority (PA) areas often use vehicles - cars, trunks - to murder Israelis: Jews, Muslims, and others indiscriminately. Suicide bombs remain a staple in the Islamists' choice of murder weapons.

Where guns are banned or severely restricted, terrorists simply select another option.

Wikipedia's Overview of gun laws by nation entry does exactly what the title claims.

Guns might be banned, but terrorists and other crazies will find a way to kill, maim, and otherwise disrupt our lives. Their options are limited only by their imagination and access to the internet.