The Barney Fife Answer to Gun Violence

For several years now Chris Rock has had the answer to America’s gun violence problem. Just in case you aren’t aware about 10,000 of us are murdered each year by guns that are both legally and illegally gotten.

Since there is little interest in stopping the manufacture and sale of more guns Rock says the answer is making the cost of bullets too high to waste on innocent by-standers.

“You don’t need no gun control. You know what you need? We need some bullet control. Man, we need to control the bullets, that’s right. I think all bullets should cost $5000. $5000 for a bullet. You know why? ‘Cause if a bullet costs $5000, there’d be no more innocent bystanders. … Every time someone gets shot, people will be like, “Damn, he must have did something. He put $50,000 worth of bullets in his ass!” Niggas will say “I would blow your fucking head off–if I could afford it! I’m gonna get me another job, I’m gonna start saving some money, and then you’re dead man!. You better hope I can’t get no bullets on layaway!”

Seriously, that really isn’t just a joke. It does have a certain logic to is. One of the dangers pointed out in the Aurora, CO shootings is that the shooter had amassed an ammo dump of 6,000 rounds of ammunition. Most of it he purchased quite legally, in bulk quantity, over the Internet and with no background check needed; just a credit card and a shipping address.

The Supreme Court has ruled that the individual citizen has a Constitutional right to own a gun. It has also ruled that various governments have the right to place restrictions or conditions on gun ownership. What is left open is the question of ammunition. Does a citizen have a right to own enough ammo to wipe out a small village? Does a citizen have a right to buy ammo in such amounts without having to undergo a background check? Should ammo be taxed to drive up the cost where amassing such fire power is just too expensive? Should, like Barney Fife, we each only be permitted one bullet?

So, maybe Chris Rock is correct. The answer may not be gun control. The answer may be simply, bullet control. Let’s just make it too expensive and legally difficult for another mass murderer to walk into a public arena and spray massive numbers of lead projectiles into the assembled crowd.

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