Sadly, the world woke up over the past few days to hear about the tragic shooting in Las Vegas. The crisis leadership at the scene must be at full tilt due to so many crime scenes revealing themselves. We will see many more days and weeks of news relating to this shooting alone, with an inevitable rise in deaths as time goes by. So much individual talent has been wasted by one person’s act, never to be realized. Predictably, the whole issue around the Second Amendments ‘Right to Bear Arms’ is yet again debated ad nauseam, mostly by people who don’t understand the pro’s and cons.
The fact is, the US as a collective will never give this right up, whether it be the correct thing to do in some people’s eyes or not. Even after this mass killing, I believe that it will not even dent the resolve of most Americans to keep it. So, where should the discussion realistically now go? How does a country as large as the US manage and keep safe approximately 310 million firearms of various types and sizes; all of which have the ability to destroy.
Many would say that, with that many firearms, any control is too late, but I think that time and effort will be better spent managing and improving the future access to firearms. One of the mainstays in what could be an improvement in firearm allocation and crime reduction would be to implement a national register at federal level. In this one act, some degree of effective monitoring of firearms (balanced with the rights of US individuals to possess them) would contribute to a more responsible approach. Hand in hand with this move, a set of enforceable sanctions at State level should ensure that firearms owners inform the authorities when they sell, swap or destroy them. And of course, the much-debated need to have better State level method of undertaking due diligence; the very process that would prevent people like Stephen Paddock hoarding some very powerful assault weapons (news reports at the time of writing state at least 42) in his home address. This last point supports a much-vented view that firearms don’t kill, people do.
The last point that I would make is that none of the solutions that I have heard from across the pond relating to the safe allocation and keeping of firearms actually threatens the Second Amendment; an Amendment that actually doesn’t legislate for individuals to bear arms, just to raise a militia. You will have many more points of view as to how to maintain the safekeeping of firearms in the US, but clearly now something has to change. Is there really anything wrong in asking for a restriction in the number and types of weapon balanced with what the applicant is going to use the weapon for? Is it not reasonable to ask for the mental wellbeing of individuals prior to issuing it? Isn’t it the human right of every other citizen in the US to live without the fear this type of danger? Or shall we just wait for the inevitable?
I look forward to your comments
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Brett Lovegrove is an Associate of nStratagem and a past Head of Counter Terrorism for the City of London Police. nStratagem has a great deal of experience in helping leaders and organizations through their security challenges. Contact us for a discreet discussion.
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