Op-Ed in ‘The Hill’ Unintentionally Illustrates Logic Vacuum of Gun Control


School Shooting iStock-1282013865
America’s gun owners are once again penalized by the shortcomings of people who violate existing gun laws, and will ignore any new ones. IMG iStock-1282013865

Two sentences in the second paragraph of an Op-Ed in The Hill about gun control failures relating to the recent trials of James and Jennifer Crumbley—parents of Michigan school killer Ethan Crumbley—perhaps best illustrate the vacuum of logic within the gun control movement, guaranteeing that whatever restrictive laws anti-gunners adopt, they will always fall short.

Writing about the passage of the Public Act of 2023 in Michigan, Prof. Kimberly Wehle, University of Baltimore School of Law, asserts, “If that law had been in place in 2021, 15-year-old Ethan Crumbley might never have attempted the shootings because his parents — despite their shortcomings — may have complied with state law. Instead, they were found criminally liable for not imposing in their own home the very restrictions on gun access that Michigan lawmakers had neglected to enact.”

“If” is often called the “biggest word in the English language.” “Might” comes in a close second, probably in a tie with “may.” The sentence illustrates just how wrong—and perhaps wrong-headed—gun control proponents are about pushing restrictive laws and regulations, expecting people most likely to violate or merely ignore the law to suddenly comply. There is no reliable evidence of that ever happening in the history of mankind, dating from the slaying of Abel by his older brother, Cain, to the present.

Long story short, regardless of the number of times it is repeated, gun control proponents refuse to accept the reality that criminals and stubborn, stupid people do not obey every gun law. Indeed, they disobey most or all of them, figuring to not get caught. Based on what she wrote and how it is written, Wehle is an intelligent person with an interesting argument. She just happens to be mistaken.

The elder Crumbleys knew their son had behavior and emotional problems, but they bought him a 9mm handgun anyway, which he had in his backpack the day of the shooting in late 2021 at Oxford High School. Earlier in the day, when there was an opportunity to take the kid home, or at least check the contents of his backpack when he was in the school administration office, nobody did that, which pretty much underscores Prof. Wehle’s allusion to their “shortcomings.” A detailed examination of the family situation is found in the March 15 edition of New York magazine’s Intelligencer.

In the opening paragraph of her short essay, Wehle also used a term that has become the mantra among gun control advocates for which there is no strict definition: “commonsense gun safety laws,” whatever the hell this actually means. It apparently refers to whatever restrictive gun control legislation is at issue at any given moment.

The Crumbley parents were both convicted of involuntary manslaughter. Ethan Crumbley will spend the rest of his life in prison for the four murders he committed. It was not the absence of a law which allowed the crime to happen, and anyone with genuine common sense understands it. It was, instead, a combination of judgment lapses, ignoring warning signs and a violation of existing law—a juvenile possessing a handgun on school grounds, concealed in a backpack—which produced the Oxford tragedy.

First, let’s try to define what a gun prohibitionist might consider “commonsense gun safety laws.”

  • Licensing and registration of all guns and their owners.
  • Permits to purchase, issued by a government agency.
  • Limits on the number of firearms one might own or purchase in a single 30-90-day period.
  • Waiting periods of at least 10 days, and perhaps longer.
  • Minimum age of 21 years to purchase or own a firearm.
  • Mandatory “safe storage” of all firearms, perhaps subject to annual inspection by law enforcement.
  • Repeal of “shall-issue” concealed carry laws.
  • Repeal of state preemption laws.

These bullet points are just part of the gun control scheme, and it is questionable whether any would survive a constitutional challenge since there appear to have been no analogous restrictions at the time the Second Amendment was adopted. Simply put, they are all infringements on the right to keep and bear arms.

And even if some of them would pass the constitutional smell test, who honestly believes the people at whom such restrictions are aimed would actually abide by them? Convicted violent felons still have guns and use them in crimes, and they do not buy them at local gun stores, so they don’t bother with waiting periods or background checks, anyway. Habitually careless people would still leave guns lying around where a child might find them.

Essentially, the only people really encumbered by restrictive gun control laws are those who would likely never violate such laws in the first place. They’re essentially punished for the “shortcomings” exhibited by other people.

Until the gun control crowd understands and accepts the reality that the laws they push really only penalize the wrong people and violate their Second Amendment rights in the process, they’re going to be running in circles.


About Dave Workman

Dave Workman is a senior editor at TheGunMag.com and Liberty Park Press, author of multiple books on the Right to Keep & Bear Arms, and formerly an NRA-certified firearms instructor.

Dave WorkmanDave Workman


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