Everybody agrees that to reduce the improper use of guns, especially handguns, we must keep them out of the “wrong hands.” The “wrong hands” consists at least of known felons, unknown persons who are mentally unstable and children. And, apparently, Mr. Shuba of Dayton, who was convicted of murdering his wife.
Consider the fellow whose loaded gun with a chambered round fell out of his holster in the movie theater that was later found by children, and the family in Yakima that kept an operable weapon unguarded in a garage, enabling one boy to accidentally shoot his brother.
How do we prevent these incidents?
Nobody dares answer this question in a comprehensive way, because every answer puts a burden on gun owners.
Guns must not be accidentally lost in movie theaters. Why bother to carry one in? Who is going to determine who at this moment is becoming mentally unstable and dangerous and who possesses a gun?
How can we prevent guns from falling into the hands of felons? All these questions are answered if we track ownership and transfer in all cases and make gun owners responsible for injury caused by their guns.
The NRA argues for keeping guns out of the hands of mentally unstable people, but they have never presented a comprehensive plan to do so. Why? Because they can’t without agreeing to comprehensively track weapons ownership and weapons transfer.
Nobody asks NRA spokesmen the natural follow-up questions whenever they are interviewed: What is your recommendation that addresses your concern about mentally unstable people possessing firearms? How do you propose to keep firearms out of the hands of felons? What program do you recommend so that children do not get their hands on firearms?
Firearms owners should ask themselves how they want this done. Stop criticizing and make a recommendation that is actionable.