BATF PROVES GUN LAWS WORK
Stunning enforcement refutes "loophole" phobia
Sting puts teeth back in dozens of forgotten critical laws
Bloomfield Press News-
In a blistering front page expose, The Arizona Republic unequivocally demonstrated Sunday (2/11/01 "1,500 firearms seized in 15 months") that the nation's gun laws are excellent, and that prudent enforcement can and should lock up thousands of known criminals flagrantly defying the law.
Long-time reporter Dennis Wagner's unusually accurate gun coverage fails in only a single aspect, its spin. The article conveys an urgent sense of need for more gun laws, and is perfectly timed to back such proposals by left-leaning lawmakers. The more apparent conclusion -- that the gun laws are excellent and obviously sufficient if enforced -- is never mentioned.
"You can lock these people away forever or even put them to death for these crimes, what would a reasonable person add to that?" asks Alan Korwin, author of numerous books on gun laws, and operator of the web site gunlaws.com. "Thank goodness we're finally getting action on the enforcement front," Korwin says, adding, "how about investigating why it took so long, and if it will continue? Nothing cuts down crime better than cutting down the criminals."
A reduction in all forms of gun crime is likely after the arrests, Korwin says, but the paper confusingly reports these have not been made yet. "Gun crimes will continue to drop enormously if this kind of enforcement continues and the criminals are taken out," he says, but warns that "if new laws are touted as the answer, and that replaces enforcement as it so often does, the public at large is the loser."
The report gives the impression that scores of flagrant felony violators were identified and might be arrested, depending on the will of the U.S. Attorney's office. An unspecified "few" arrests have already been made.
Despite the few arrests, the story claims ATF agents raided more than 20 private homes. Civil libertarians should be up in arms (pun intentional) if that many homes were stormed by government operatives and no charges were brought against the occupants.
Korwin is reserved however about charges by gun-rights activists that ATF is tricking people or enforcing the laws unfairly, calling such claims unsubstantiated at present. "If government agencies are systematically raiding people at home in abuse of their powers, those agencies should be excoriated or dismantled, and their leaders imprisoned," Korwin says.
"Every crime committed in this sting carries long jail terms, with no loopholes," Korwin continues, "so you have to question the logic of people like the reporter and the anti-rights advocates who seek more laws, instead of more enforcement. Is there really something else they're up to?"
"Of course," says Rick DeStephens, vice president of Brassroots, a Tucson-based civil rights organization quoted in the story. "The only real goal on the part of the government agents and the anti-rights crowd is to disarm Americans, and create a government monopoly on the use of force."
The fact that Americans are still free, free to buy firearms from one another, is what's really under attack here, Korwin says. "The honest people buying and selling is not an issue, not a crime and not a problem, as we can plainly see from the story," he says. "But the laws the left wing proposes will focus solely on you and I. They can't focus on the criminals because that's already in place. Honest people are all that remains."
"The call for even more laws is a naked attack on fundamental liberty. The leftists seek an increase in government, for a problem that's already got a solution, at the expense of personal freedom. If you want the attack on crime to continue, the mass media, authorities and attorneys must continue to focus on more of this excellent enforcement."
The timing of the article is terrible for people working to defeat a glut of new infringement laws being proposed by leftists, and comes at a time when ATF is seeking to grow from increased tax funds. The idea of deliberately publicizing law enforcement to influence legislation is unpopular to many, but is not illegal at this time. It's not clear why agents might enforce a new law when so many existing ones were ignored for so long.
It's generally recognized that laws do not stop people from committing crimes, because written rules in a book somewhere, signed by someone sitting in a chair, cannot directly affect anyone's actions. All a law lets you do is attack a suspect afterwards with the full weight of society's punishments and controls.
Whatever the legislature might succeed in enacting now, fueled by this glamorous mass media support instead of common sense, does nothing to make you safer or stop criminals. The legwork by our law enforcement officers, there for all to see, acting judiciously under our huge and excellent body of criminal laws, is our last and best hope of stopping heathen gun runners.
If we had this quality of law enforcement on a routine basis you wouldn't see a felon within a hundred miles of a gun show. Think of the dramatic reduction in crimes we would enjoy. The public should rise up and demand more of the same, instead of being herded into supporting laws that merely grant more powers over us, to "authorities" and bureaucrats.
One of the few errors in Wagner's piece is reference to a .50 caliber rifle as a cannon, which it is not. Government forces have cannons, and numerous weapons larger than .50 caliber, which is half an inch. American citizens have generally been restricted since 1938 to bullets one-half inch or less in caliber.
Alan Korwin BLOOMFIELD PRESS "We publish the gun laws" 4848 E. Cactus, #505-440 Scottsdale, AZ 85254 602-996-4020 Phone 602-494-0679 FAX 1-800-707-4020 Book orders http://www.gunlaws.com