Terrorists and Guns

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December 13, 2015 by Chris Kite

In the nine radical Islamic terrorist attacks on the US since 9/11, there have been 47 people killed. And of those 47 people, 44 were killed by guns. We have a gun problem in this country.

In an al Qaeda video posted on June 3, a terrorist calls on Jihadists to take advantage of lax American gun laws.

I know what the gun rights crowd will say because they’ve already said it. You can’t completely stop terrorists (or crime, or mass shootings, or mass killings, or murder) by making gun laws tougher. That is true. But it is also true that you cannot completely stop terrorists by tightening security on airline flights. It is also true that you cannot completely stop terrorists by implementing tougher non-citizen US entry checks. And yet, we decided that it was important to implement these changes to reduce the threat.

It is also true that some of the terrorists legally obtained the guns they used and things like expanded background checks would have done nothing to stop them from obtaining guns. And only some of the terrorists used semi-automatic assault style weapons, handguns, or high capacity magazines. But again, while you could not have stopped all of the terrorists with changes to our gun laws, isn’t it worth an attempt to stop some of them, or even lessen the damage they can do?

While it isn’t what happened, imagine if all of these terrorists had committed their acts on airplanes. We would most certainly be looking to change the way people are screened before they fly.

It only makes sense to put our gun laws under scrutiny. Expanded background checks seem like a no brainer. Banning high capacity magazines and assault weapons would almost certainly lessen the damage done by terrorists and mass shooters.

It is true that these changes would not eliminate all terrorism. But absolutely none of the laws in our country have been successful at eliminating all of the type of crime they are designed to protect us from. Don’t we owe it to United States Citizens to make an attempt to lessen the risk of death from terrorist attacks?

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