Michael Bloomberg Makes Radical Anti-gun Push; Blames Trump for Shootings
Written by Selwyn Duke
Former New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg has never liked guns, except in his bodyguards’ hands, and now he’s made Second Amendment restrictions his first major policy proposal since launching his 2020 Democrat primary bid last month.
As the New York Post reports:
Michael Bloomberg vowed Thursday [Dec. 5] to reinstitute a federal assault weapons ban and require more rigorous background checks and licensing to obtain firearms if he’s elected president.
The billionaire former mayor … laid out the gun control agenda during an event in Aurora, Colorado — where a deranged man killed 12 in a movie theater in 2012.
In addition to the assault weapons ban, Bloomberg called for raising the age to buy a gun from 18 to 21, the same for purchasing booze.
He would also require every gun buyer to obtain a permit before making a purchase and require a 48-hour waiting period.
Background checks would cover private sales and gun shows, and domestic abusers also would be denied access to firearms, according to Bloomberg.
Trying to score campaign points, Bloomberg accused political opponents of looking “the other way” on murders committed with firearms. “As president, I will attack gun violence from every angle,” he said.
Bloomberg also “blasted President Trump for not taking up House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s bill requiring background checks for gun purchases,” reports the Washington Times. “‘Donald Trump seems to accept this violence and pain,’ Mr. Bloomberg said.”
Yet given some of his proposals, one could wonder if Bloomberg himself is serious — that is, about reducing the homicide rate. If the goal is simply to outlaw all firearms via incrementalism, however, the proposals make sense.
First, “assault weapons” is a propaganda term; the guns in question are merely small-caliber, somewhat high-powered, semi-automatic rifles (one round fired with each trigger pull) that generally have a military appearance. And they’re used in only about three percent of gun murders, most of which are committed with criminals’ weapon of choice: the handgun.
Moreover, since the rifles in question are more sizzle than steak, they’re not actually the most effective weapon for perpetrating the mass shootings in which they’re often implicated; semi-automatic, 12-gauge shotguns are more devastating against soft targets at close range. In fact, the 2012 shooter in Aurora, where Bloomberg trumpeted gun control, initiated his carnage with a shotgun.
As for background checks, all purchases made from licensed dealers — including at gun shows — require them. Only private individuals are exempted, such as when you sell a rifle to a neighbor.
Bloomberg also asserted that
“the nation’s gun violence epidemic hasn’t been solved because politicians have viewed it as a problem plaguing Hispanic and African American communities, thus not acting to solve the ‘nationwide madness,’” the Times also relates.
Yet you can’t prescribe a correct cure without first making the right diagnosis, and the truth is that this problem does largely plague black and Hispanic communities.
As the National Council on Family Relations (NCFR) pointed out in January, “Of the 12,979 firearm homicides in the United States in 2015, 81% occurred in urban areas (CDC, 2017).” Since approximately 80 percent of the population lives in cities, this wouldn’t be remarkable but for the fact that 68 percent of all murders occur in just certain urban parts of five percent of American counties.
As the NCFR puts it, “The disparity is even greater in certain geographies of large cities, specifically those that are more racially and ethnically diverse. For example, in 2014, in Philadelphia’s safest police district, which is approximately 85% White, no one was reported killed by gun violence. In the most violent district, with a roughly 90% Black population, there were 189 shooting victims and 40 deaths (Philadelphia Police Department, 2017).”
Also note that in NYC, 96 percent of gun violence is committed by blacks and Hispanics; and, nationwide, 92 percent of black homicide victims are killed by other blacks.
This is why the NCFR writes that the “White experience of gun violence is often vastly different from that of racial/ethnic minorities in urban settings.”
Dr. Thomas Sowell put it even more bluntly in 2012, writing that different areas’ murder rates have nothing to do with guns or gun control — people are the difference.
Whether within the United States or internationally, the best predictor of murder rates is demographics and geographic location (with the two factors intertwined). Sowell provides many examples, and I have presented others.
In fairness, Bloomberg’s plan does consider this: He suggests devoting $100 million to local programs in “hard-hit” communities to address the problem. Nonetheless, the localized nature of most murder, and crime in general, indicate the folly of his national, top-down, one-size-fits-all “solutions.” And, of course, Bloomberg appears completely oblivious to the spiritual and moral rot that lies at these problems’ heart.
What he’s not oblivious to is the politics. Bloomberg is pursuing an unorthodox campaign strategy, forgoing the first four primary states and focusing on the 16 Super Tuesday contests, and “nine in 10 Democratic voters” across these states support stricter gun control, reports CBS News.
That said, it’s a risky position to take into the general election. In fact, it’s widely believed that anti-Second Amendment stances cost ex-vice president Al Gore the 2000 election, when he lost to George W. Bush.
It’s especially risky for Bloomberg, whose radical anti-gun activism and Gotham elitism have brought accusations of hypocrisy. As comedian and longtime Bloomberg critic Jackie Mason quipped in 2016,
“If guns are not important and nobody should have a gun to protect himself, why does Bloomberg have 12 [armed] bodyguards? Why doesn’t he stand there with 12 rabbis?”
Of course, though, Bloomberg appears to believe in God even less than in guns. At least his bodyguards can have guns. God is something he only plays himself.
Courtesy of The New American