Chicago Equals Insanity

Albert Einstein once defined insanity as “doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”  Chicago’s gun laws fit Einstein’s definition perfectly.  In an effort to combat violent crime, Windy City liberals have succeeded in making law-abiding citizens defenseless against thugs who do not obey any laws.  But rather than change their strategy, Chicago’s leaders try more of the same.

Consider the hell on earth that is present-day Chicago.

In 2008 there were 511 murders, including 125 during the summer months; in 2009 the number was 453; and from January to May 2010, 164 homicides have been committed.  With violence this bad it has been suggested that the National Guard may have to be called out to quell the viciousness Chicago’s citizens have unleashed on one another.

However, the Supreme Court recently struck down Chicago’s 28 year-old gun ban as unconstitutional but the city wasted little time by imposing more draconian gun restrictions just days later.  The Chicago City Council passed a new ordinance that allows only one assembled and operable firearm in a household.  Any remaining weapons must be locked away while also decreeing that all firearms must be kept inside the house and can not be taken outside, onto the porch or in the garage.

In a press conference to announce and defend the new proposals, Mayor Richard Daley said of the new laws:  “It responsibly and reasonably balances previous Court rulings on 2nd Amendment Rights with our determination to protect our residents from violence and keep them safe.”

In addition, Mayor Daley cited, not the out-of-control violence in his city, but several strange facts on the supposed danger of firearms in the home:

  • A gun in the home increases the risk of unintentional firearm injury, suicide and homicide.
  • The danger of having a gun in the home is especially serious for children and adolescents. In states with more guns, young people are at higher risk for accidental gun injuries, suicide and homicide.
  • Women in states with higher levels of household firearm ownership are more likely to be murdered.
  • A long line of studies show that gun availability is a risk factor for suicide. Firearms in the home are associated with significantly higher rates of suicide, including among young people.

The mayor also expressed “great concern over the danger faced by law enforcement and emergency ‘first-responders’ when they enter a home in which there are guns.”

So Mayor Daley is not particularly concerned about the warzone his city has become. 

“As long as I’m mayor, we will never give up or give in to the gun violence that continues to threaten every part of our nation, including Chicago,” Daley said.  “I believe that enacting a new handgun law is the responsible step for us to take and the right thing to do. Without it, I fear for that there will be greater violence on our streets and in our homes.”

It is understandable that people have an inordinate fear of guns.  We live in a gun culture.  But firearms are the surest way for citizens to protect themselves in a society that is becoming more violent every day. 

A woman in Tulsa, Oklahoma recently defended herself from two “well known” thugs who broke into her home armed with knives, threatening to rob and sexually assault her.  She shot them both, killing one and critically injuring the other.  Had she not possessed a firearm, she would have been robbed, raped and God knows what else.  Officials in Tulsa wisely decided to file murder charges but against the wounded attacker in the hospital.  A state law allows such a charge if that person commits a felony and someone dies in the process.

The two assailants in Tulsa had no guns, but carried out the crime with other weapons.  Criminals are the problem, not decent, law-abiding citizens, and certainly not firearms. 

Oklahoma is demonstrating sanity by allowing citizens to defend themselves, without fear of prosecution, and going after thugs who prey on society.

If there is one indisputable fact about liberalism it is this: if carried to its fullest extent, it will always accomplish the exact opposite of its intended purpose.

Disarming law-abiding citizens will only lead to more violent crime, not less.  Chicago is definitive proof of that fact.

In times past, namely the Old West, guns were freely carried by law-abiding citizens.  But sadly, much of our perception of history comes from television and the movies.  The words “old west” or “wild west” would probably conjure up an image from a film, most likely a shootout scene with guns blazing.  Movies portrayed the era much differently than reality, however.

It might be surprising to many that there were very few murders, and other violent crimes, in the Old West.  Scholars who have studied the period have concluded that violence was quite low.  Dodge City, of Wyatt Earp fame, had its deadliest year in 1878, when just five murders took place.  One historians’ study found that there were only 45 murders in the five major cattle towns in the Wild West from 1870 until 1885, an average of just three a year.

Why was violence so low?  The answer is obvious.  It was never a good idea to violently confront someone with a six-shooter strapped to each hip.

But in a blatant form of hypocrisy, politicians have armed guards to protect them each and every day, then vote to strip citizens of their rights to own and possess firearms for defense.

The best idea to ensure that politicians look out after the personal well-being of the nation’s citizens comes from the late Harry Browne, two-time Libertarian Party presidential nominee, who once said that if he were elected president he would immediately order the disarming of Capitol police officers, who would remain unarmed until Congress repealed all federal laws that restrict a citizen’s right to keep and bear arms.  If citizens can not protect themselves, he said, then politicians had no right to such protection.

Mayor Daley, President Obama, and every leader in our cities, our states, and our nation’s capital should have to face the same fears the rest of us face.  Maybe then the insanity would end and laws that actually work to protect the citizenry would prevail.


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