A new study from the University of Pittsburgh confirms what defenders of the Second Amendment have been saying all along: When it comes to gun violence, law-abiding firearm owners are the least of the problem. The study was limited to Pittsburgh, but the numbers are slanted enough that they undoubtedly cast a light on a national truth. What the researchers found was that in 80% of gun crimes, the gun itself belonged to someone else.
“More than 30 percent of the guns that ended up at crime scenes had been stolen, according to [epidemiologist Anthony] Fabio’s research,” wrote the Washington Post. “But more than 40 percent of those stolen guns weren’t reported by the owners as stolen until after police contacted them when the gun was used in a crime.”
The article pointed out that theft wasn’t the way criminals in Pittsburgh were getting illegal guns; the study indicates that many of the owners of the “stolen” guns did not respond to police inquiries. The author says that this could be a sign that many of the guns were sold as straw purchases – a person with a clean background buys a gun to turn around and sell it to someone who couldn’t pass a check themselves.
In both of these cases, though, the kind of gun control Democrats are always yelling about would do absolutely nothing. Straw purchases are already illegal. Theft is already illegal. Closing the so-called gun show loophole isn’t going to do anything. Banning individuals on the terror watch list from buying guns won’t change it. Nothing short of an all-out ban on firearms sales would make a difference, and that’s not in the cards. Even if it was, we cringe at the thought of the black market disaster we would have on our hands.
The truth is, our society’s problems with gun violence stem from root causes far deeper than the weapons used to carry out the crimes. Until we seriously address issues of mental illness, gang warfare, illegal immigration, and cultural rot, this problem isn’t going away. The liberal war on guns isn’t just a threat to the Bill of Rights; it’s a distraction from the very efforts that could save lives. Of course, considering that the vast majority of homicides are committed in cities that have been utterly ruined by Democrat Party policies, it’s no wonder they’re so eager to deflect the blame.