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We saw it coming: after the horrific shooting on the mosques in Christchurch, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern warned the public that gun laws would change. The deed has been done.
Today, New Zealand began the process for banning “military style semiautomatic weapons, assault rifles and high-capacity magazines.”
These are the kinds of actions that government takes when people are afraid. Their decisions are knee-jerk reactions instead of ones giving serious consideration to the comprehensive question of mass shootings. We’ve seen our own anti-gun lobby try to capitalize on mass gun shootings and continue to argue that the guns are the problem, when we know that any person with a certain level of skill can turn handguns into weapons of mass destruction. But logic and common sense play no role here. Here is one comment from Ms. Ardern:
‘One of the failings of our system, of course, is that we can have a range of weapons that are of this power or caliber and simply not know how many there are.’ She said the buyback could cost as much as $140 million to implement. ‘That is the price that we must pay to ensure the safety of our communities.’
There is nothing safe about taking guns away from law-abiding citizens.
Her goal for the buyback program, of course, is to make sure that they get every single gun turned in, which is an impossible task. They will increase penalties for those people they discover have disregarded the gun ban. Currently penalties range from a fine to three years in jail.
According to Gunpolicy.org, there are between 1.2 and 1.5 million guns in circulation, and no national registry of guns. That is something for which to be grateful.
Since her party is in power and favors these changes, she believes the new law will be enacted by April 11, “with more changes to come.”
We have seen anti-gun groups insist that we only need to take people’s guns away to keep the public safe. And as many of us know, there is only one group that will be safe.