Introducing the Thoughts and Prayers Act

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Captain's Blog - Stardate 21518.8

This is my second blog about gun violence today. I cannot get it off my mind, I’m a quick text-typer, and I have a long commute.

I’m done. This has gone on for far too long. I am fully convinced that this must be the result that the NRA leadership wants. When you compile these recurring actions with white terror groups, evangelical hate speech, Fox News, and the fear and smear campaigns over the past forty years, what some may call the southern strategy, the fact that it is easier for me to own a gun than a motor vehicle must be by a strict design. 

If that's true, there must be a reason. Looking at the rhetoric that surrounds so many of the NRA positions, it seems that they are hoping for: stricter immigration laws, stronger sentencing for offenders of color, less funding for education and increased funding for the military while encouraging the use of weapons which may lead to an uptick in military enlistment… Gosh…I wonder if any of these policies are being considered… (For new readers...that's sarcasm.)

I am sick and tired of thoughts and prayers from congress and leadership. Guess what…if there is a God, you’ve been sending thoughts and prayers for years and at this point one of only two things is possible:

  1. God has heard you and decided that there are better things to do than answer them.
  2. God has already given you the tools for you to make grown up, adult, difficult, and necessary decisions and is sending thoughts and prayers back to Earth that you will do your job and make them. 

I'm betting on number two. So, at this point, I will accept only the following thoughts and prayers. Introducing…The Thoughts and Prayers Act.

The Thoughts and Prayers Act

  1. Immediate and permanent ban on the sale of AR15s and all automatic and semiautomatic weapons in stores or gun shows or between private citizens.
  2. The immediate ban on the sale of all firearms to:
    1. Those deemed mentally ill via comprehensive medical exam
    2. Violent offenders
    3. Domestic abusers (married or not)
  3. Required written and skills tests, like with driving, before the purchase of a firearm. Proof of passing this yes must be renewed every five years. 
  4. Required liability insurance for ANY OWNER OF A FIREARM. This insurance must be presented when purchasing ammunition.
  5. Required background checks for all gun purchases, including individual sales and gun shows.
  6. Any gun sale that is carried out without the required testing, insurance, background checks, and other reasonable processes will incur a fine and possible jail time for both parties. 
  7. A reasonable cap on ammunition purchases within a year.  
  8. Any firearm whose primary purpose is offensively (as opposed to defensively) taking a human life shall be evaluated by a bipartisan task force. 
  9. Ammunition for automatic and semiautomatic weapons will no longer be sold in stores, at gun shows or between individuals. Failure to comply with this will result in a fine and possible jail time. 
  10. Bump stops are to be permanently banned from sale in the US immediately. 
  11. Those who already own automatic and semiautomatic weapons are expected to keep these weapons separate from their ammunition and safely locked. Any one of these firearms that are used in any form of human violence, the owner will be considered an accomplice for that violence and face charges accordingly.
  12. A deposit program for automatic and semiautomatic weapons will be established. Owners will have two years to return these weapons and be reimbursed for the value of the weapon. After the two years, they may still be turned in for a tax credit. 
  13. A non-compulsory registration system that comes with discounts and awards for members. The RRA, or Responsible Rifle Association will be a group dedicated to gun safety education, proper and responsible gun use, and the transparency of the gun lobby. This is encouraged but not mandatory. 

So, come at me with reasons these do not make sense. And no, as anyone who has stood in line at the DMV will tell you, inconvenience is not a good enough reason.

"Bad people will still do bad things" goes out the window when you look at...oh I don't know...all of our laws! Look at ALL the rules we are supposed to follow when driving. Still confused? Read my previous blog.

Hunting is not a good enough reason to own a semiautomatic or automatic weapon. Now, I don't hunt, but if you can't kill an animal without raining a barrage of bullets at it...perhaps a new hobby rather than a new weapon should be considered.

What else ya got?

 

Please note: I am not anti-gun ownership, responsible gun owners, or the sport of hunting. It's not my thing, and I am saddened when people are hunting animals to extinction, but that's another topic. I believe that these ideas are common sense stuff that responsible gun owners are doing anyway. However, clearly common sense alone isn't enough. So, let's figure this out.