It’s not the weapon; it’s the criminal, stupid – Minden Press-Herald
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It’s not the weapon; it’s the criminal, stupid

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In recent days, the Crescent City has been making the news again. Has another hurricane drawn a bead on the Big Easy? No. The Saints leaving? Not yet.

The news item that has prompted the governor to send the National Guard back to New Orleans is the rapidly escalating crime rate, murder in particular. In a single incident this past week, five teenagers were gunned down in a dispute thought to be drug or gang related.

Anti-gun forces are undoubtedly already out, looking past the murderers at the weapons in their hands, screaming that if guns were confiscated, this sort of dastardly deed wouldn’t be happening.

Oh really?

In New York City, last week’s weapons of choice were knives. There were four fatal stabbings within a 24 hour period involving two women tourists who were together in Times Square, a Texas man who was attacked on a subway, and a local resident who was also stabbed on a subway.

New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, an avid anti-gun crusader, has caught flack from the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms (CCRKBA).

“I fully expect the mayor to start ranting about ‘crime knives’ and how the nation needs a law to stop ‘illegal blades’ from being smuggled in from other states with lax cutlery laws,” said CCRKBA Chairman Alan Gottlieb. “I say to Bloomberg, ‘It’s not guns, or knives, it’s the criminals, stupid!’

“While New Yorkers and tourists are bleeding from knife wounds,” he added, “Bloomberg is obsessed about guns. He’s mounted legally-questionable ‘sting’ operations in other states with private investigators and apparently interfered with on-going serious criminal investigations by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.”

“What this demonstrates beyond any doubt is that criminals will harm victims with whatever weapon they have at their disposal,” Gottlieb stressed. “Even if Bloomberg were able to disarm every law abiding gun owner in this country, which seems to be his goal, criminals will still be out there committing violent crimes with knives, clubs, bricks, or guns they take from cops. You don’t stop criminals by disarming their victims.”

Gottlieb further noted that if New York had a sensible concealed carry law like those now in effect in some 40 states where average citizens have a right to carry for their personal protection, this kind of thing would not be happening in broad daylight in downtown New York City. Instead of harping about guns, Gottlieb suggested that Bloomberg should be campaigning to overturn generations of restrictive, regressive and discriminatory New York gun laws to enable his constituents to fight back. Until he does that, he’s not part of the solution, he’s part of the problem, Gottlieb added.

While the situation in New Orleans and New York are different, there are similarities that bear noting. A gun can serve as a lethal weapon; so can a knife, a broken beer bottle or a baseball bat. Anti-gun advocates are blinded by these facts, focusing only on guns.

Law abiding citizens who stand behind our Second Amendment giving citizens the right to keep and bear arms have to be baffled and frustrated by this twisted way of thinking. Gun, knives and broken beer bottles are inanimate objects. It’s when they are wielded by criminals bent on inflicting damage to someone else that they become lethal weapons.

Glynn Harris Outdoor column is sponsored by D.C. Pawn in Minden