I accidentally read a post at Wonkette today bemoaning the passage of a bill in the Arizona Senate that would allow citizens to carry guns at public events. Citing the recent shooting at a “Congress On Your Corner” event at which six people were killed and a dozen wounded, including Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, State Senator Linda Lopez (D- Tucson) cried to her colleagues, “have you no shame?” Such appeal to emotion may be effective if logic has been abandoned. Fortunately for Arizona, it appears that the rest of the State Senate has not.
Clearly the current, more restrictive law was no deterrent to a madman carrying out his delusional plan in the Tucson shooting. It stands to reason, then, that a less restrictive law would have had no effect on Jared Loughner’s spree. If you are determined to commit murder then violating a firearms law is the least of your considerations. So far, no net loss of security, no net gain, nothing to get bent out of shape about. This is where law-abiding citizens enter the equation.
If you are a law-abiding citizen, you are going to consider firearms laws. If carrying a firearm is not allowed in a public place, law-abiding citizens will not have them. So far, still no effect on the Tucson shooting. It is when law abiding citizens are allowed to carry firearms in a place where it has been clearly demonstrated that defending your life may be necessary that the outcome of the Tuscon shooting begins to look different. Something like this:
That’s a potential net gain of fifteen, in case you’re keeping track. Okay, fourteen if you count the madman but I think that’s a debatable point.