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posted: 1/17/2013 4:40 AM

No easy answers on gun control

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No easy answers on gun control

Continuing school shootings has ushered in a wave of voices either demanding a total ban on gun sales or tighter restrictions on persons buying guns. Neither proposal would be the ultimate solution.

A total ban on guns would be tantamount to the prohibition era when alcoholic beverages were banned and that didn't work.

There are no easy solutions on gun control. Some guns will always fall in the hands of people with poor judgment; some will in the hands of mentally disturbed people.

Italy and England present the most diverse cases on gun control. The Italian government allows its citizens to own guns but requires endless forms to be filed just to buy one. Those few that do persevere to own one will have more forms to file each time they go to a shooting gallery or buy ammunition, making it traceable to the serial number of the gun they now own. Using a gun during a burglary there presents another legal challenge. An Italian has to make a snap decision how he can legally shoot a burglar. They can only shoot if the burglar is facing them and presents a danger. but are not allowed to shoot him if he decides to run out of the house.

England presents the strangest case of all on gun control issues. British households are not allowed to have guns. In turn British policemen are unarmed and criminals there are also unarmed. One would expect low crime rates there as a result of all this but it has proved to not be the case. In spite of an almost gun-less society England's crime rate per 100,000 actually exceeds that of the U.S. There seems to be no easy answer on the issue of gun control be it pro or con.

Walter Santi


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