The National Rifle Association of America has launched an attack on Australia’s gun laws. The article There will be blood can be found on their website.
In discussing the John Howard-initiated buy-back after the Port Arthur massacre, the article says What occurred in Australia in 1996 was not just a stricter gun law—it was a mass confiscation. To paint it as the product of a national consensus is an insult to those Australians who were furiously opposed to being disarmed by their government.
There certainly were many people who were deeply upset by being required to surrender their pump action shotguns and John Howard courageously confronted angry gunowners to argue his case in Sale.
Many people feel that the gun buyback defined John Howard’s political legacy.
Nationally, there had been 13 mass shootings in the 18 years before the 1996 reforms. There had been none since. It’s difficult to get accurate figures on the mass shootings in America however one study suggests there has been one month since 2009.
The logic of the NRA, which opposes any restriction on the number or firepower of guns that the public can own, goes like this: Everyone should have a gun. This means that there will always be a good guy around to shoot the bad guy who has got a gun. Simply stopping people having guns isn’t the answer.
While the jury is still out on the Martin Place massacre in Sydney, it seems highly likely that the arrival of the good guys with guns precipitated the tragedy.
Most Australians are very happy with their gun laws and believe that restricting firearms is the best way to protect public safety.