6/00 Safe Streets And Cities

Safe Streets & Cities
Larry Pratt

I suspect that most of you have heard of some city announcing a gun “buy back” scheme to “get guns off the streets.”

Well, of course, I agree that we do not want guns on the streets. We want them in the pockets and purses of the decent people of our country who otherwise without the ability to defend themselves are more likely to be victims of crime.

And before I go any farther, let us be clear about the word game involved in the term “buy back.” How can a unit of government buy back something it has never owned? If we are not careful, these politicians will go from buying guns back to just taking them back.

After all, we are saying that guns ultimately belong to the government if we accept the implication of “gun buy backs.”

This was one of the talking points I discussed with Memphis Councilman Brent Taylor when he called to discuss the gun buy up program his fellow councilmen had voted to kick off on Mothers Day.

Similar to other gun grabbers, the Memphis City Council, save one — Brent Taylor — wants to get guns off the streets. They assume that this will make crime go down, since any gun out of circulation has to result in less crime.

The problem with the Memphis Council’s collective logic is that the guns they would like to see out of circulation are never going to get surrendered. The criminals will hang on to their pieces no matter what is the law. Really.

In order to encourage citizens to be carrying guns on the street, Gun Owners of America launched a pilot project in Memphis. The Safe Streets and Cities Fund is being tested there to see how many people will take the training required to get a concealed carry permit in Tennessee.

Major establishments that provide the training are getting the word out that a rebate of up to $50 is available for those taking the training course.

Let’s hope that in the months ahead, the balance of power will shift away from the criminals and toward their potential victims.

Maybe someday a municipality will see the need for an armed citizenry. Then, rather than trying to scam the people’s guns out of their hands they will erect a sign such as this one in my dreams:

“Welcome to Memphis. Thank you for packing.”