Monday, October 24th, 2016

Do we get Swiss army knives, too?


Glenn Reynolds has an op-ed in the New York Times regarding communities adopting laws requiring gun ownership.

Experts don’t think the Kennesaw ordinance, which has never actually been enforced, did much to change gun ownership rates among Kennesaw residents. And, given that Greenleaf’s mayor has estimated that 80 percent of the town’s residents already own guns, the new ordinance can’t make all that much of a difference. But criminals are likely to suspect that towns with laws like these on the books will be unsympathetic to malefactors in general, and to conclude that they will do better elsewhere.

To the extent that’s true, we’re likely to see other communities adopting similar laws so that criminals won’t see them as attractive alternatives. The result may be a different kind of “gun control.”

Ann Althouse asks,

What if you don’t want to own a gun? If you think individuals have a right to own guns, shouldn’t you think they have a corresponding right not to own guns? The right of free speech includes the right not to speak.

She points out that there is a great debate over whether the 2nd amendment guaranteeing the right to bear arms is a collective right, given to the states to organize a militia as necessary, or an individual right. She asks, “Don’t you have to adopt the collective right view to believe people can be forced to possess guns?”

I suggest perhaps a broader view of the Third Amendment might be in order to keep the state from ordering Grandma to buy a bazooka.

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