Would You Ban All Guns If You Could?
I am not someone who would ban all guns if I could.
One of my brothers is a sports shooting enthusiast and has a range in his backyard and whenever Louise and I go back to Michigan we stay with him, and if we're there over the weekend we're always in the backyard shooting.
And the major downside of that, by the way, is that when you're done shooting, your hands are covered with lead powder which means that every time you go out shooting you probably lose a half an IQ point.
But that said, no, I wouldn't want to ban them.
I have respect for people who use guns for sporting purposes like my brother does.
I have respect for people who use guns for hunting - and I'm a vegetarian! And have been since I was 17 years old.
So no, I don't think that guns should be banned.
I think that we should have rational gun policies.
There are people, ranchers and whatnot, who actually need weapons.
There are a lot of people in particular jobs where concealed carry is a reasonable thing.
There are people who live in areas where they feel that they need a gun to defend themselves.
I'm not opposed to guns - I'm opposed to stupid gun policies.
We are 4 and a half percent of the world's population. We have 44 percent of the world's guns.
The reality is that most Americans don't want to own a lot of guns.
There are many Americans who own one gun, or two or three guns, but people who are owning 40, 50, 60, 100 guns, that's a very, very small percentage of Americans.
The percentage of Americans who feel that their manhood is not complete if they don't have a very large weapon with a very large magazine, it's a very, very small percentage of people.
But the gun industry has the power through the NRA to buy legislators, now that the Supreme Court has said that it is okay for an industry to own individual politicians, the power to own Ted Cruz - they gave him $360,000, Marco Rubio got $176,000 - this is just the top 20 recipients of the gun lobby from last year.
Marco Rubio $176,000, Paul Ryan $171,000, Ron Johnson $165,000, Rand Paul $155,000, Pat Toomey $79,000, Ryan Zinke $79,000, the list goes on and on.
By the way, they're all Republicans, the top 20 recipients of gun money.
Because the gun industry, just like the fossil fuel industry, is a corrupt industry.
The weapons industry in the United States is making money off Americans killing each other.
My position has been for decades, and I continue to hold this position, that we should be as rational about guns as we are about cars.
Cars can kill people and in the 19-teens we put laws into place when cars started killing people to minimize the probability of that happening.
Number one: if you own a car, it's got to be registered: from the time of manufacture until the time of destruction there's a clear chain of ownership.
Number two: if you're going to use a car, you have to demonstrate you know how to use it safely. There's a driver's test.
And number three: if you own a car and you're going drive a car, you have to have liability insurance.
Those three things should be applied to gun owners. Very simple, very straightforward.
And then let the insurance market take care of this.
If some some guy wants to buy five AR-15s and a thousand rounds of ammunition, let his insurance company decide if he's going be a risk.
With your liability policy on your car, if you get a drunk driving conviction, your price is going go from $200 a year to $2,000 or whatever. I've never had a drunk driving conviction, I don't know this from personal experience, but my understanding is that it explodes the price. It makes sense, right?
So there you've got an actual marketplace that is actually having some impact on what's going on.